This guest blog entry was written by Articulate EVP of Sales & Marketing Mark Schwartz.
Imagine putting in a full day’s work and then having to go to school for more than 5 hours of classroom lectures one day a week. That’s a long day. For part-time MBA students at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin — and many other advanced degree students around the world — this type of schedule is required in order to complete the rigors of a part-time MBA course load.
Steve Crane, Associate Professor of Economics at Marquette, was asked by his associate dean and the director of the MBA program to seek alternatives to traditional classroom lectures as a way to reduce the burden of MBA students.
“Essentially, I was tasked with providing a solution that would enable students to learn remotely, at their own schedule and pace — without compromising on quality content or rigor. My research led me to Articulate Rapid E-Learning Studio Pro,” said Crane.
Crane converted his managerial economics class — a core curriculum course required for all MBA students — to a blended learning course consisting of a biweekly lecture supplemented with e-learning. Thirty-eight hours of class lecture material was transformed into 18 hours of engaging e-learning, thanks to Articulate.
“As a result of swapping direct classroom contact time for elearning, I expected more student requests for assistance,” said Crane. “I was surprised that this was not the case. I soon came to realize that in a traditional lecture, once you say it, it is gone, but with e-learning, the students can always access your commentary and examples, and can clear up many points of confusion on their own. In addition, the embedded Quizmaker self-test quizzes helped to both identify problem areas and offer clarification when the correct responses were revealed.”
Articulate software also provides flexibility to allow students to seek their own pace through a lesson. This ensures the best use of the students’ time. For example, the course requires a solid foundation of statistics and calculus. Since a third of the MBA candidates are engineers, they don’t require a refresher on these disciplines. But for those who need to learn or brush up on derivatives and basic statistics, the courses are designed so that lessons on these subjects are merely a click away.
“I’ve found the Articulate software very simple to use,” said Crane. “And the Rapid E-Learning Blog has really improved my e-learning course design and effectiveness.”
Overall, student feedback has been positive and Marquette’s College of Business is moving toward redesigning its entire MBA program to a blended approach. Crane’s experiences proved very useful in demonstrating how this can be done.
Add this success story to the recent University of Houston example of how they’re using Articulate, and it’s clear that Articulate can play a significant role in transforming education and the way people around the world learn.
I’d love to hear from other educators on how you are using Articulate software. Share your story by contacting me here.