Insead links around globe

Previous Article Next Article Insead links around globeOn 1 Mar 2001 in Personnel Today Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos. JaneSommers-Kelly, managing director of Insead Online, explains how the businessschool achieved its blended learning approach to course deliveryInseadis generally thought of as one of the most respected educational institutions,with campuses in both Fontainebleau, France, and Singapore.  Setup 40 years ago, Insead now has 650 MBAs, 5,500 executives and 40 PhDs from 70countries worldwide passing through its doors every year.Alwaysat the forefront of corporate development, Insead has now taken its learningprogrammes one step further by announcing Insead Online. This acts as acomplementary service to Insead’s traditional face-to-face managementeducation, creating what is now called a “blended learning” approach to coursedelivery.Thedecision to go online was made after existing Insead corporate clients such asShell, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Sony Europe and Cable & Wireless, expresseda desire for their employees to have an online learning alternative.  As demand from these clients increased,Insead Online was created.  Instrumentalin this development was Professor Soumitra Dutta, Dean of Technology andeLearning at Insead.InseadOnline will provide Internet-enabled courses, or modules of about three hourseach, such as Professor Manfred Kets de Vries’ module on leadership.  This, and other modules  on topics such as Innovation, Web Strategiesand Financial Accounting, will complement Insead’s already successfulclassroom-based learning methods by building platforms and learning communitiesfor executive managers. A Learning Management System (LMS) will deliver, trackand assess student progress and performance throughout each module.Feedbackfrom existing Insead clients has highlighted a requirement for training to fitaround the busy lifestyles of managers. Creating Insead Online has met thisrequirement with the added advantage that it has fostered much closerco-operation between Insead Online and clients, as feedback is easier andquicker to receive. Iam hoping that we shall launch a series of online modules to a selected groupof corporate partners for starters and expect to involve more than 1,000participants during the first year. TechnologyproviderDocentwas chosen as the technology provider to make Insead Online a technicalreality. The Docent technology gives companies an e-learning platform thatmakes management-level education easily accessible. We chose Docent primarilybecause of the flexibility and adaptability of Docent Enterprise and Docent’slocal management. Managersaccess training modules via the Insead Online website. Insead Online isdeveloping the full functionality of this site using Docent Enterprise 4.7. Thesystem is run on a Windows NT Compaq server, giving Insead Online anarchitecture that is completely scaleable and able to meet Insead’s rapidlygrowing and evolving client needs. Corporatestudents can access Insead Online using most of the popular web browsers.Students register online for a number of learning events, including self-pacedcourses, attending virtual classes, one-to-one tutorials and traditionalclassroom activities.  InseadOnline is particularly enthusiastic about the possibilities created by itsvirtual classrooms. These work by allowing managers, dispersed across theglobe, to attend an online lecture given by a professor. Managers can see andhear the professor live over the Web, then participate actively by discussingtogether or asking questions about the lecture in real-time.“Weare very pleased with the system overall,” says Amit Jain, technical director of Insead Online. “We are notspecialists in technology, we are not technology developers, we simply had anidea of how we thought online interaction should be, and built a modelaccordingly. We want to enable people to learn whenever and wherever it suitsthem. Docent Enterprise 4.7 played an important role in helping us to achieveour vision.”Managerscan complete a three-hour finance module at home before going on  campus to participate in a week of classdiscussions and studies.  The cost, timeand travel implications are of obvious benefit to Insead’s corporate clients,as all are reduced compared to pure classroom-based courses. Whenregistered, managers can plan and select learning programs based on theirindividual learning styles and needs.  InseadOnline additionally offers learning recommendations to participants, such asrelated reading material to augment module content. It continually assesseslearners’ knowledge and performance to ensure that their learning objectivesare being consistently met.DocentEnterprise contains an important tracking feature used by Insead Online to helpin its assessment of participants.  Thissystem continually tracks students’ work-in-progress.   Additionalfeatures include assignment submissions, so a learner working on a case studycould do the research and analysis on any PC. When the assignment is ready forsubmission to Insead Online, the student simply logs on to  his or her “personal area” and uploads thefile. These personal areas are easily updated by the individual student, as andwhen the student chooses.SecuritySecurityis naturally a concern of Insead Online when it comes to holding personal dataonline.  Users want to know who can seetheir information and who has access to their personal profiles.  Whensomeone registers with Insead Online, the system administrator will grantaccess privileges to certain areas of the site.  These areas will be dependent on the status of the applicant. Forexample, professors are given access to learner profiles so they can trackprogress.  Learners are only grantedaccess to their own personal areas, ensuring they cannot see the  personal areas of others.Aselect number of corporate clients will have a taste of Insead Online’scapabilities this month.  Insead Onlinewill then be offered to all interested parties from May 2001.Verdict:learn when and where you wantUsingDocent Enterprise, Insead Online created an e-learning platform that makesmanagement-level education easily accessible, giving Insead the ability tooffer online learning modules.JaneSommers-Kelly says that Insead found the implementation of the technologystraightforward, with corporate students and professors finding the system easyto access and user-friendly. “As Insead Online allows managers to completemodules away from campus, the benefits to companies include time and moneysavings, as training can fit around busy schedules,” she says.Corporatestudents learn when and where they want. They have the option to attend livevirtual classrooms, and to speak with the professors live over the Web. Designedand delivered by: Docent, Docent UK and Ireland, Regus House, 400 Thames ValleyPark Drive, Thames Valley Park, Reading, Berks RG6 1PT, Tel 0118 965 3472, fax0118 965 3572, e-mail [email protected], read more