12 May 2020 19:56 IST

ISB plans online and hybrid learning models to kick off academic year

PGP 2020-21 cohort to propel digital headstart module, operation JumpStartIndia@ISB and study treks

Indian School of Business (ISB), in light of the unprecedented Covid-19 crisis, is working closely with all its stakeholders in redesigning its educational programmes, which are aimed at fostering resilience, agility and social transformation, said Professor Rajendra Srivastava, Dean, ISB.

Online and hybrid learning models will soon be the order of the day, and a performance-driven approach will be the new narrative, he emphasised in a press release from the B-school. Dean Srivastava was speaking at a recent leadership event that was conducted by ISB for the incoming Post Graduate Programme (PGP) class. The session was focused on interacting live with the students about their queries and letting them know about the various initiatives that the school has taken to ensure that the learning curve stays on track.

ISB has been conducting leadership sessions for the incoming class with its senior CEO-level alumni and board members. In addition to this, the school is doing sessions with faculty, student management team and careers team with the students.

Building on this growing imperative, team ISB, after a series of discussions and brainstorming sessions, designed a new hybrid learning format that addresses the current challenges, balances the new learning process and augments new global insights and perspectives.

Blend of learning

Prof Milind Sohoni, Deputy Dean, ISB, said that the new programme delivery model is a blend of synchronous and asynchronous learning. Prof Sohoni said that the recently-inducted PGP class of 2020-21, has already started its learning journey through initiatives such as Operation Jumpstart and ISB Perspectives, which include webinars, online lectures and panel discussions by ISB faculty Board members, alums, and other eminent leaders from industry and academia. The new programme calendar additionally includes several other unique initiatives. In particular, he introduced the 10–week long digital headstart module (DHM) that will be starting from June 15, says the release.

The DHM will feature the four foundational/core academic courses; additional leadership development modules; learning events; alumni interactions and other co-curricular activities. He mentioned that this year ISB is embarking on an initiative to enhance practice-based learning for students. This initiative this year is called JumpStartIndia@ISB, wherein students will work on faculty-led projects to generate solutions to the most pressing challenges before the country on its road to recovery. The goal of these projects is to identify smart solutions that minimise the trade-offs in the short run and create a pathway to robust economic recovery in the medium term.

Classes from Sept 2020

Sohoni said that, once the lockdowns are discontinued and things are closer to normal, offline classes would begin on both ISB campuses in the first week of September 2020. He added that the PGP 2020-21 calendar would be 52 weeks long and would be interspersed with several other features including career preparation week; career advancement services, and experiential learning programmes.

He also said that the new programme is scheduled to begin on May 31, with the orientation week and leadership development programme (LEAD) running over the first two weeks leading up to the DHM.

He said that, rather than simply choosing to push back the programme schedule and wait for students to show up on its campuses to begin classes, ISB chose to restructure its programmes delivery model to include online and blended learning, increasing the programme duration, and adding several new programme features to enhance the value proposition for the incoming students.

Dr. Philip Charles Zerrillo, Deputy Dean, ISB said that study treks are another new initiative of ISB. Study treks would facilitate meaningful experiential learning, peer-to-peer learning, he said, and would be complemented with ISB perspectives module, where students will interact (online & offline) with ISB Board members, guest faculty, alumni on various aspects related to business management, he added. ISB will follow and implement all the health guidelines and physical distancing norms as mandated by the Government, underlined Dr. Philip.