Santiago Iñiguez de Onzoño and Robert Sullivan led a roundtable discussion on the “Future of Learning” at the 2015 AACSB Deans Conference in San Diego. To unleash the creativity in the room, attendees were asked to imagine that they had been given a highly coveted deanship position by NASA on the planet Mars, aptly named Mars University. At Mars University, there are no restrictions, no immediate stakeholders to placate, and no “this is the way it’s always been” naysayers to overcome. In such a place, how might learning be sought? What would the pedagogical tools there look like? From this wide-open setup, participants shared a host of questions and ideas for the future of learning. Understanding the learners themselves was a key theme that quickly emerged, including meeting the learners at their own level and better grasping their attributes, motivators, and goals. Correspondingly, a great deal of discussion was spent on the impact technology has already had and how it will continue to shape the way we learn. Numerous other themes emerged, but the general consensus was that the modern business school environment is a rapidly changing ecosystem, with numerous changing cogs that will continue to shape the way instructors teach and students learn. Having a better understanding of these changes and adapting appropriately will help ensure an efficacy of learning.
Special thanks to Bloomberg BNA for supporting the graphic recordings of the "Future of ... " sessions.