Monday, September 21, 2009

Busines Education and Research

Recently my research partners and I put the finishing touches on our papers for the 2009 DPE (Delta Pi Epsilon) Research conference to be held in San Francisco.

One of the papers has to do with the use of Grounded Theory approaches in Business Education research.

There has been little qualitative work done in the Business Education area. In fact there has been little quality work done in the Business Education area. But that is really a 'trick' sentence. The problem is that there really hasn't been a good definition of Business Education since "Office Education" went out of style.

My statement is about the field in general. This doesn't mean to say that there hasn't been good quality research work in the individual areas such as entrepreneurship, accounting, economics, marketing, etc. There have been good studiess in these areas.

But there haven't been good studies of the field as a whole.

When I look at the official research needs in the area I always feel as if I am looking at a list that master's students with very limited experience have devised as a starter for initiating their master's research.

It seems hard to find depth. It seems hard to find a logical, comprehensive stream of research leading to good theory and explanation of the field. It seems hard to find anything more than description.

I'm not the most 'qualitative' of researchers but qualitative research allows us to ask questions that are crucial at this moment in our professions history.

What is Business Education? What do Business Educators really do? think? experience? strive for?

What do our students experience? think? strive for? What do our students want/need from us?

Its my opinion that the field of Business Education is in danger of disappearing into technology (not business technology just plain technology) and fragmenting into its component parts - see what has happened to consumer education, economic education and marketing education.

In depth, good quality explorations of the area and deep, thoughtful discussion about our future and how we will attain that future are our only hope.

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