International Comparison in Business Education 商學教育的國際比較

(附中文) I am highly interested in international comparison in different topics because this is the best way to learn from others cultures and think about how we can improve our own countries. As a current MBA student, here I am going to compare the business education in Maastricht University, Harvard Business School and National Taiwan University in the hope of having some reflection on the education in Taiwan and the U.S.

Maastricht University in Netherlands

Maastricht University (MU) is famous for its problem-based learning, which has the spirit to learn business by tackling real problems.

  • Course setup: there are only 10-15 students per class, and in every class, a team will set the agenda and lead the discussion on a specific problem that companies are facing. The professor is only an observer rather than a lecturer or a facilitator.
  • For example, in a class of Global Supply Chain Management, the leading team projected a map of Kazakhstan to let students discuss on where to build the new factory to produce chocolate for the European market.
  • Pros: through the problem-based learning, students can simulate the real business environments to frame problems, set meeting goals and facilitate meetings – very similar to what I have learned in the management consulting firm!

Harvard Business School in the United States

Harvard Business School (HBS) is famous for its case method, which provides students opportunities to learn by reviewing and discussing on tons of cases throughout courses.

  • Course setup: each class, there are 90 students with diverse background and 1 professor facilitating the discussion.
  • Pros: the learning mostly comes from the perspectives provided by students with different experiences (ex: cultures, industries or positions).
  • Cons: as the framework and directions of discussion are provided by professors, students lose the opportunities to learn how to set meeting agendas, lead meetings and achieve goals successfully. Compared to the education system in MU, HBS might need to improve the training on this aspect and let students gain the critical capabilities in communication through a more effective way.

National Taiwan University in Taiwan

National Taiwan University (NTU) is the top one university in Taiwan, but most business classes are still in lectures rather than discussion.

  • In my opinion, business and management cannot be learned only through a series of lectures without any debate and disagreement. Moreover, in a semester lasting for three months, students might only review less than 5 cases, leading to a lack of connection between knowledge to application.
  • I believe NTU has pretty high quality faculty, so if they can adjust the teaching methodology to be more student-centric, then students must learn much more from the curriculum.

我對各個領域的國際比較都深感興趣,因為這是最好的方式來學習其他文化的優點、進而思考如何改善自身國家的弱點。身為商學院學生,希望能夠針對馬斯垂克大學、哈佛商學院和台灣大學的商學教育進行比較,從中學習與反思台灣和美國的教育。

[荷蘭 – 馬斯垂克大學]

馬斯垂克大學以其「問題導向式學習」聞名,標榜從解決實際問題中學習商業知識。每個班僅有10至15位學生,且每堂課都由一組學生針對企業真實面對的問題設定討論議程、帶領全班討論。教授的角色僅是一名觀察員,既不是講者、亦非討論帶領者。例如:在全球供應鏈管理課程中,領導小組將哈薩克的地圖投影在牆上,由學生們討論應該在哪裡設巧克力工廠以供應歐洲市場。通過問題導向式學習,學生可以模擬真實商業環境來定義問題、設定會議目標並引導會議討論,跟我實際在顧問公司工作的學習非常相似!

[美國 – 哈佛商學院]

哈佛商學院以其「個案教學」聞名,提供學生機會透過閱讀大量個案、參與課堂討論來學習知識。每堂課裡會有約90位背景相異的學生和一位帶領討論的教授。在課堂中,主要的學習都來自於學生:擁有不同工作經驗的學生貢獻多元觀點,讓其他人可以從文化、產業、部門等不同視角來重新檢視問題。然而,由於課堂討論的框架與流程由教授主導,學生喪失了學習設定會議議程、帶領會議並達成目標的機會。相比於馬斯垂克大學的教育體系,哈佛商學院應該要改進這方面的教育訓練,讓學生能夠有效地增進溝通技巧。

[台灣 – 台灣大學]

台灣大學是台灣最好的大學,但多數商學院課程仍然以老師授課為主。我認為商業與管理不能夠僅從一系列的講課學習、缺乏辯論與表達不同意見的過程。此外,在三個月的學期當中,學生通常只會有五個個案以內的閱讀材料,導致學生普遍缺乏知識與應用之間的銜接。我相信台大的師資真的很好,所以如果能夠調整教學模式、更加以學生需求為主,學生應該能夠從課程中學習到非常多東西!

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