ADMN-2080H: Managerial and Market Research
Dr. Raymond D. Dart, School of Business
Knowing that Trent’s trademark value is a personal and transformative learning experience, Dr. Ray Dart worked hard over the summer to innovate his popular market research course, ensuring that his students could remotely log into Zoom each week and still be engaged and connected to each other while learning about the professional practice of focus groups, analytical interviews, and surveys.
While some students in the Managerial and Market Research course are in Dubai while others are logging in from India or Germany, Zoom, Blackboard and even a private Facebook group have helped students stay connected and engaged.
“At Trent, connection is central to our DNA,” says Professor Dart. “I’m certainly not alone amongst our faculty and staff in rising to the challenge of understanding and engaging our students as human beings in this era of social distancing.”
Facilitating learning across globe
In his course, which focuses on primary research and its use in problem solving and decision making in the business world, Prof. Dart knows that his live lectures can be at 3 a.m. for a student on the other side of the globe. He ensures those students can find the recorded lectures in Blackboard and also makes himself available during evenings if they need to chat by Zoom with any follow-up questions or clarifications.
Mixing up Zoom classes is important to “keep it fresh,” he says, so he offers lectures, breaks, breakout-room chats and frequently asks individual students to speak to the group about ideas or projects. He also created a class Facebook group, which he says is especially critical during remote learning as it cultivates a friendly learning community through jokes, memes and recipes.
The course projects easily lend themselves to technology. Students use video conferencing, for example, to conduct interviews or focus groups on modern issues such as better understanding work experiences throughout the pandemic. Using Blackboard, students can take their exams remotely while also accessing their grades, deadlines, syllabus and links to required readings.
Greater group work experiences
Multi-access learning, Prof. Dart notes, has also made taking classes on either of Trent’s two campuses more convenient.
One such student, Zoe Zaikos, a second-year Business Administration student at Trent Durham, says she is enjoying the course, especially learning about the psychology behind why people buy certain products and services.
Ms. Zaikos has also found it easy to get to know her classmates who she connects with through email, or posting a message on Facebook. “This has really improved group work,” she says.
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