Bringing management reality into the classroom ‐ the development of interactive learning

Alastair Nicholson (London Business School, London, UK)

Journal of Management Development

ISSN: 0262-1711

Publication date: 1 August 1997


Gaps between theory and practice are most acute in the management aspects of education in manufacturing engineering. Techniques and technologies can be taught as principles prior to application, whereas the management processes and their complications have to be experienced to be sensed prior to a theory being needed. Analyses the various approaches which have been tried to bring practice and theory together. Shows that management reality in the classroom is not dependent on reproducing the complexity of detail, but rather the need to attempt to solve problems under the pressure of time, inadequate information and group interactions. Demonstrates how this reality can be recreated through an interactive classroom communication system applied to two classic problems in decision making and continuous improvement. The development of the method or theory thus emerges interactive with practice. States that the schemes have been most powerful in their use inside companies for managers to develop their own theories of their current work practices, habits and assumptions, following on from the experience of this educational process.



Nicholson, A. (1997), "Bringing management reality into the classroom ‐ the development of interactive learning", Journal of Management Development, Vol. 16 No. 6, pp. 438-451.

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Copyright © 1997, MCB UP Limited

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