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Introducing learning strategies to increase student engagement on a BA Event Management final year course

Introducing learning strategies to increase student engagement on a BA Event Management final year course

Krolikowska-Adamczyk, Ewa ORCID: 0000-0002-0739-2110 and Abson, Emma (2015) Introducing learning strategies to increase student engagement on a BA Event Management final year course. In: ABS Learning Teaching and Student Experience Conference, 28-29 April 2015, Park Inn by Radisson Hotel, York, UK. (Unpublished)

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The growing importance of student engagement has been highlighted in two recent publications by the HEA: Keenan’s (2014) Mapping peer-lead academic learning UK survey and Buckley’s (2014) UK Engagement Survey. A number of researchers such as Bonwell and Eison (1991) have found that active learning strategies (students acting in the role of instructors) can engage students because they are thinking about what they are doing and not just recording information. Increasing student ownership and control in other areas such as assessment (Irwin and Heppelstone, 2012) can also increase their engagement with learning.

A number of studies examine active learning on science and medical courses (e.g. Bernot and Metzler, 2014; Collins and Calhoun, 2014) however there are few papers which explore these strategies on a business degree programme and even fewer which cover Event Management courses. Event Management is a relatively new field of academic study with the first degree programme offered in 1996. Over the past 18 years, it has grown in popularity with 109 institutions now offering events-related subjects and 84 undergraduate programmes currently being offered in the UK (UCAS, 2014). We decided to introduce active learning strategies to improve student engagement on a final year undergraduate course: Contemporary Issues in Events Management on the BA Event Management programme.

The course has been running since 2005 however it has suffered from poor attendance and lack of preparation by students who do attend which Chad (2012) has noted as a growing problem. This has led to students becoming over-reliant on tutors’ knowledge in contrary to the course’s objective to facilitate the development of Events Management students into autonomous and life-long learners. The course learning outcomes require students to critically examine current issues affecting the events industry, evaluate different perspectives and reflect on solutions however this was not being supported through the course design.

A number of strategies were introduced in September 2014 to encourage student engagement. These included student-led lectures and tutorials to be created and delivered in groups. The benefits of group work as an effective learning strategy are well documented e.g. Burdett (2003) and Chad (2012). In addition, students were given some control over the course content and choice of assessment. Our paper will present this case study for discussion.

Item Type: Conference or Conference Paper (Plenary)
Uncontrolled Keywords: student engagement, active learning, peer teaching
Faculty / School / Research Centre / Research Group: Faculty of Business > Department of Marketing, Events & Tourism
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Last Modified: 04 Sep 2020 17:42

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