WBS undergraduate teaching wins European award

07 August 2015

Three WBS Operations Management academics have won an esteemed award at this year’s European Operations Management Association (EurOMA) Award Ceremony.

Mehmet Chakkol and Max Finne, both Assistant Professors of Operations Management, and Mark Johnson, Associate Professor of Operations Management, won The Nigel Slack Teaching Innovation Highly Commended Paper Award at the ceremony held in Neuchâtel, Switzerland.

The paper ‘Flip’ or not to ‘Flip’? Reflections on the Redesign of an Undergraduate Operations Management Course won the inaugural award at the 22nd EurOMA Conference held to discuss the theme of Operations Management for Sustainable Competitiveness.

Dr Johnson said: “We were delighted to have an opportunity to communicate our application of the ‘flipped’ classroom teaching method to the wider academic community. To win the award is recognition of all the hard work involved and the appetite to approach university teaching in different, engaging ways.”

WBS Operations Management academics at EurOMA Award Ceremony
Flipping great: WBS Operations Management academics (L to R) Mark Johnson, Max Finne and Mehmet Chakkol with their awards at the EurOMA Award Ceremony alongside Professor Andy Neely, President of the EurOMA (Far left)

Dr Finne added: “The paper is based on the experiences and data gathered while teaching the Operations Management module for more than 300 first year undergraduate students.

“Our aim here was to drive student engagement and further improve the already very good teaching outcomes of the module. It was based on technologies enabling recording, uploading and sharing short video lectures, as well as designing online tests used for the module assessment.

“Accordingly, we would like to give a big thank to the world class WBS eLearning team.”

The paper was an investigation into how the traditional classroom set-up has remained much the same, despite the huge advances in technology, and how to mix things up for students by ‘flipping’ the focus onto more student-lead activities. It places students at the centre of the learning experience and not just as passive recipients.

The researchers looked at how video, guest videos and other practices could be used to complement existing teaching methods.

Ten design principles are also offered in the paper, highlighting how best to establish a flipped classroom.

Dr Chakkol added: “We observed that combining online videos, practitioner lectures, in-class tests and group assessment has drastically increased the engagement and understanding of the subject matter among our students.

“In the WBS Operations Management Group we strive to bring innovative teaching methods into the classroom and believe that the ‘flipped classroom’ can be extended and applied to other modules as well.”

Dr Mark Johnson teaches Operations Management on the Full-time MBA, Executive MBA, Global Energy MBA and Distance learning MBA.

He also teaches Project Management, Supply Chain Management and Service Management: Transforming Service Organisations on the Executive MBA.

In addition to his teaching on Postgraduate courses, he also teaches Project Management and Improving Process Performance on a number of Undergraduate courses.

Dr Mehmet Chakkol teaches Supply Chain Management and Operations Management on a number of undergraduate courses.

He also teaches Supply Chain Management on the Executive MBA

Dr Max Finne teaches Project Management on the MSc Business suite of courses and Business Studies II and Operations Management on a number of Undergraduate Courses.

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