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Dorothy Leonard special report - Main - Moving Beyond the Classroom With Executive Education

 
12/16/2002
Keeping your executives current on the latest developments in their fields has to be a top priority of any organization. HBS professor Dorothy Leonard discusses the latest thinking in adult education, distance learning, and mentoring. PLUS: Coverage of the Adult Learning Workshop at Harvard Business School.
New Perspectives on Executive Education

In today's fast-moving business environment, companies lose competitiveness if their executives and employees can't keep pace with advancing knowledge in their disciplines. The good news: Great strides have been taken on research and technology to deliver new levels of adult learning. The less-than-good news: There is still much debate on what works, what doesn't, and little research into how face-to-face and distance learning can be combined into an effective hybrid program.

In April, Harvard Business School professor Dorothy Leonard brought leading experts on education together at the Adult Learning Workshop to answer this fundamental question: To what extent should the traditional face-to-face classroom experience serve as the model for online programs? Participants included MIT Senior Lecturer Peter Senge, a Founding Chair of the Society for Organizational Learning; John Seely Brown, Chief Scientist of Xerox Corporation; and Chris Dede, Timothy E. Wirth Professor of Learning Technologies at Harvard's Graduate School of Education.

Using materials from the workshop and an interview and working papers provided by Leonard, this report explores issues such as mentoring, coaching, distance learning and other components confronting the modern learning organization.

Mentoring—Using the Voice of Experience

Companies crave experienced executives—so why don't they do more to make sure that wisdom is captured in the corporate DNA? Harvard Business professor Dorothy Leonard discusses the differences between mentoring and coaching; why it can be difficult for "masters" to reach "novices" and who should be responsible for managing a corporate mentoring program.

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Marrying Distance and Classroom Education

Distance learning—extending the classroom over time and space using technology—certainly holds appeal for companies looking to keep executives on the cutting edge. In an interview, HBS professor Dorothy Leonard looks at the strengths and weaknesses of the online classroom, and how it can marry with traditional face-to-face teaching.


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Designing Hybrid Online/In-class Learning Programs for Adults

A working paper describing seven principles for designing so-called hybrid adult learning programs: those that combine aspects of face-to-face and distance learning. The paper, written by Dorothy Leonard and Brian DeLacey, grew out of the Adult Learning Workshop at Harvard Business School.

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Distance Learning: What the Experts Think

Video CameraSome of the world's most respected thinkers and practitioners on the subject of distance education convened at the Adult Learning Workshop at Harvard Business School in April, 2002. Here are some of their views, captured on video, on the opportunities and challenges over the next few years.
Lynda Applegate
Professor, Harvard Business School

Lynda Applegate

"I think the biggest challenges are trying to figure out how we can leverage this great opportunity to really think differently about the way we think about learning."
(2:20)
Click here to view video
Bob Halperin
Senior Vice President, Custom Programs, Harvard Business School Interactive
Bob Halperin

"One of the opportunities that I would point to is the use of e-mail as a potential killer application within the professional executive distance learning programs."
(4:07)
Click here to view video
Joel Podolny
Professor, Stanford Graduate School of Business
Joel Podolny

The best opportunity I see over the next few years is to introduce some of the electronically mediated learning technology into firms to facilitate a change process."
(4:29)
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Bob Fogel
Chief Executive Officer and President, Harvard Business School Interactive
Bob Fogel

"We have this tremendous opportunity to improve the managerial capabilities of millions of individuals."
(3:41)
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Chris Dede
Professor, Harvard Graduate School of Education

Chris Dede

"Weaving together those three kinds of interfaces to give people a real opportunity for lifelong learning."
(2:54)
Click here to view video
Peter Senge
Senior Lecturer, MIT


Peter Senge

"I think the real frontier is around simulation."
(2:41)
Click here to view video
John Seely Brown
Xerox Corp.
John Seely Brown

"The biggest challenge is to reconceive even what the challenge is."
(1:43)
Click here to view video


To see all videos, click here
(22:30)
Related Information

Working Paper: Transferring Expertise in Startup Companies: Forlorn Hope?

Working Paper: Exploratory Capacity and the Adaptive Organization

Case Study on Technology and Distance in Education at the Harvard Business School

HBS Working Knowledge: Manager or Mentor? Why You Must Be Both

HBS Working Knowledge: Learning in Action

HBS Working Knowledge: Managing to Learn: How Companies Can Turn Knowledge into Action

HBS Working Knowledge: 'Screen Language': The New Currency for Learning

HBS Working Knowledge: Virtual Communication

Adult Learning Workshop Web site