Denmark: Unique collaborative learning system

EducationWorld August 2019 | International News

Many universities highlight the close interaction between students and faculty as a key element of their student experience. But the Copenhagen Business School (CBS) takes this approach to a whole new level. Each of the institution’s degree programmes has its own ‘study board’ made up of students and academics who collectively make decisions about curriculum design and delivery.

“A key point here is that each of our degree programmes is co-owned and co-run by students and faculty members,” says Gregor Halff, the university’s dean of education. “That means there is permanent critical debate… about how we should structure their education and the courses.” Halff adds that the students’ union also “permanently engages with faculty members… over curriculum design”.

This relaxed environment is generally most felt by international students, who make up 40 percent of postgraduate students on campus and aren’t used to “being able to call your professor by her or his first name”.

Meanwhile, CBS offers a broader range of subjects than most business schools, says Halff, with the presence of historians and philosophers on campus enabling students to “reflect critically… about the value of business, economics and the value of organisations”. “That spirit of engagement, that spirit of critical reflection, is very much part of what CBS is,” he adds.

Therefore, it’s no surprise that CBS is one of the top performers for ‘student engagement’ in the Times Higher Education Europe Teaching Rankings 2019. The institution, which makes its debut in the list this year, is ranked 45th overall and seventh in the engagement pillar, which is based on a survey of 125,000 students across 18 countries.

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