MBS Teaching Day: Inspiration for New Approaches to Teaching

Presentation during the MBS Teaching Day 2022 at Munich Business School

At the MBS Teaching Day event, teaching staff at Munich Business School had the opportunity to exchange ideas with each other and with external experts on various learning-related topics, gathering new, innovative ideas for their classes in the process.

“We’ve already achieved the first goal for today: we’re here together in person!” With these words, MBS Professor and Vice Dean for Learning and Teaching Dr. Patricia Kraft welcomed guests to MBS Teaching Day 2022, which was eventually able to take place in the MBS Lounge in early April following a postponement due to COVID-19. The aim of MBS Teaching Day is to enable professors and lecturers at Munich Business School to break out of their usual teaching routine for a day, discuss examples of best practice, and exchange ideas for tackling challenges, thus inspiring each other to embrace new teaching methods and formats. Communication and learning from others are core goals for the day. And, to help broaden the event’s horizons beyond the world of MBS, the program also features contributions from external guests.

Dr. Susanne Frölich-Steffen

After a brief talk on the topic of mindfulness from Prof. Dr. Schmidkonz, a member of the MBS Learning and Teaching Committee, followed by a guided breathing exercise to help attendees get “in the moment”, Dr. Susanne Frölich-Steffen took the microphone. Dr. Susanne Frölich-Steffen is an expert on innovative education concepts and has been coaching and speaking to higher education teaching staff across Germany for more than 15 years. “I see myself as a bee,” she commented at the start of her keynote speech. “I fly from university to university, carrying pollen with me on my knees, ready to pollinate individual institutions with new didactic ideas and inspiration.” In her speech, Dr. Susanne Frölich-Steffen discussed visionary approaches to teaching and learning, tracing an arc from teaching methods in circumstances dominated by the pandemic in recent semesters to promising teaching approaches of the future. She presented a series of examples for implementing customizable teaching methods that embrace and incorporate diversity, which also provided the perfect transition into the subsequent workshops.

For the rest of the morning, the teaching staff split up and had a free choice of three different workshops. Dr. Susanne Frölich-Steffen picked up on the catchword “portfolio” from her keynote, inviting attendees at her workshop to exchange ideas on the challenges of examinations and work together to develop potential solutions. In his workshop, Roman Rackwitz, CEO of Engaginglab GmbH and a lecturer at MBS, provided an insight into the practical applications of gamification and its potential in the context of learning. In the third workshop, Dr. Romy Hilbig, Head of Business Development /E-Learning at ESO Education Group, spoke about the use of digital learning data at the interface of data awareness and data ethics.

After an hour and a half discussing matters in these three groups, the attendees reconvened in time for the lunch break, equipped with a host of new ideas and insights:

“The workshop with Roman gave me new insights from motivation research, including how helpful it can be to visualize student progress (e.g., via knowledge trees, point systems, or levels like in computer games). Gamification offers many great opportunities to use our play instincts for better and more exciting learning.”

Prof. Dr. Sophie Hieke

“There is an abundance of ways to structure and design exams. It doesn’t always have to be a big final exam. What I’ll take away with me is that it’s not only the exam content that matters but that we should also devote more time to individual processes, steps and formats.”

MBS lecturer Johannes Hofinger

In the afternoon session of MBS Teaching Day, teaching staff took part in a BarCamp. This gave MBS teaching staff the opportunity to put forward their own issues from the field of teaching and learning, exchange ideas with their colleagues and advise one another, all in keeping with the session’s motto: “Show your ideas and challenges, peer consulting is key!” In addition to sessions on microbreaks (Núria Xicota-Tort) and the lessons learned from online teaching for use in classroom-based teaching (Prof. Dr. Katja Bubmann and Prof. Dr. Heiko Seif), students’ representatives also contributed with a workshop on inspiring teachers, which proved fascinating.

The day’s final highlight was an improvisational theater session – because, as Prof. Dr. Patricia Kraft so aptly put it, teaching and improvisation have a lot in common. Fastfood Theater München combined a handful of keywords and emotional states called out by attendees to create entertaining stories about everyday university life, providing plenty of laughs in the MBS Lounge.

After that, MBS Teaching Day was rounded off with a convivial get-together. Prof. Dr. Stefan Baldi, Dean of Munich Business School, drew a thoroughly satisfied conclusion: “Once again, MBS Teaching Day has shown me that we have a wide range of thinking here at MBS. Our knowledge runs through our university’s corridors. We create added value by sharing this knowledge with one another, thereby inspiring each other with new approaches and ideas. We did so very successfully today!”