Adaptive Behavioral Outcomes: Assurance Of Learning And Assessment
American Journal of Business Education
Business schools are currently being criticized for lacking relevance to the applied working environment in which students are supposed to be prepared to make immediate contributions and reasoned independent decisions in a fluidly changing market (Haskell and Beliveau, 2010, and Michlitsch and Sidle, 2002). While technical skills (accounting, marketing, finance, etc.) have comprised the core of traditional course subject matter, todays businesses also need graduates who arrive to work
... integrative skills such as adaptable decision-making in changing competitive environments. Teaching and assessing integrative adaptive behavioral outcomes is both a break from the norm and a challenge to those tasked with developing assessment standards and rubrics. Discussing the demand for developing and assessing adaptive learning skills in business schools is the easy part. Incorporating the development of these non-technical skills into curricula or programs of learning requires one to identify specific skills that require adaptive improvement, design specific pedagogy to develop the skills, and longitudinally measure student performance. In reality, many business curricula lack learning environments where integrative non-technical skills such as longitudinal adaptive behavior can be isolated and programmed for improvement. This manuscript identifies an experiential inductive-based teaching method that has been extended to account for longitudinal variation in adaptive behavior-based learning. It describes a holistic course pedagogy that builds on traditional theoretical knowledge, but then requires students to actively apply that knowledge using interdisciplinary decision-making that receives ongoing competitive market feedback. An assessment rubric is also suggested for linking to important AACSB Assurance-of-Learning objectives targeted at measuring behavioral-based outcomes related to applied adaptive decision-making behavior. Finally, methods are suggested in which adaptive behavioral outcomes can be integrated into other forms of more traditional pedagogy.