Joelle Davis Carter, GWSB director for undergraduate programs, recently received a $3,500 grant from the Association of Business Communication (ABC) to fund research she is conducting with a GWSB undergraduate research student. Carter and junior marketing major Jiayi Wang co-authored “A Tool of Engagement: An analysis of undergraduate business students’ participation in case study competitions,” which was accepted for presentation at ABC’s national conference in Montreal in October. The grant, provided by the C.R. Research Foundation, the foundation arm of ABC, will fund additional research and travel to the conference.
The purpose of the study was to examine the ways that case study competitions may influence undergraduate business students’ engagement in academic and career development activities. Using a qualitative research design, undergraduate business students were identified and invited to participate in individual and focus group interviews. Data analysis techniques such as open coding and categorical development were employed to measure how case competitions can influence students’ career development and academic achievement.
Case competitions provide an effective forum for students to learn and test their oral communication skills. The competitions also challenge undergraduate students to work effectively in teams force them to develop coping skills to confront and resolve problems that often emerge when working in groups.
“Essentially these are the experiences our undergraduates can benefit from as they prepare to go into the workforce. Furthermore, communication skills, working with diverse people from diverse backgrounds and with different perspectives are examples of the ‘soft skills’ employers desire,” Carter said. “My hope is that this study will identify critical factors of student engagement so that GWSB can better assess, on a small scale, what we are doing well and how we need to grow.”
Posted by gwsb on August 30, 2011 | Filed under: GWSB News.