Global Business MOOC Unites Theory and Practice

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This fall, Georgetown’s McDonough School of Business will re-launch its highly successful Global Business in Practice massive open online course (MOOC) on edX.org with a new module on global branding. EdX is the leading nonprofit online learning destination, founded by Harvard and MIT. The self-paced course currently is open for enrollment and begins on Friday, November 17, though participants may join at any time.  

Now in its second year, Global Business in Practice is the only MOOC offered by a top business school to combine academic lessons on global business with the insights of global business leaders across several industries. The seven-week course is a partnership between the school’s Global Business Initiative, Georgetown’s Center for New Designs in Learning and Scholarship, and edX.

“Only at Georgetown McDonough can you find a course that combines rigorous academic lessons in global business and how they apply to the real world, as seen through the eyes of c-suite executives,” said Ricardo Ernst, professor of operations and director of the Global Business Initiative. “Our MOOC provides access to these lessons and insights to participants from around the world who can complete the course at their convenience.”

The inaugural offering of the course attracted more than 5,000 participants from 160 countries, with over 500 entries posted to the discussion boards and approximately 1,300 assessments taken.

“We congratulate Georgetown on the success of its inaugural offering of the Global Business in Practice course and for their continued work to deliver this in-demand content with a global reach, on a global scale,” said Anant Agarwal, edX CEO and MIT professor. “EdX learners come to the platform to gain access to courses that offer them the knowledge they need to advance their careers and improve their lives. By providing offerings that meet the needs of today’s rapidly changing global economy, like the Global Business in Practice course, Georgetown and edX are furthering our joint missions of increasing access to high-quality education for all learners, everywhere.”

From seasoned business professionals to those just starting their careers, the Global Business in Practice MOOC helps participants understand the latest issues facing today’s fast-paced global business environment. The MOOC includes high-quality lecture videos, poll questions, discussions, peer assessment exercises, and sources for further learning. Additionally, as a companion to the course, the Global Business Initiative runs a dedicated website for current global business issues, where Ernst shares weekly posts that compliment the MOOC sessions.

Participants learn from Ernst and his colleagues, as well as through interviews with prominent global business leaders, including Joe Baratta, global head of private equity for Blackstone; Mark del Rosso, president and CEO of Bentley Motors, Inc.; Fabrizio Freda, president and CEO of Estée Lauder Companies; Alvaro Fernandez Garza, CEO of ALFA; Franck Moison, vice chairman at Colgate-Palmolive Company; Stephanie von Friedeburg, vice president of corporate strategy and resources at International Finance Corporation; and Manuel Puig, vice chairman of Puig; among others.

Past participants have found the course to be impactful to their careers:

“I took your Global Business in Practice class on EdX, and wanted to thank you for creating  such a valuable resource, and then offering it at no additional cost,” said Nabil Najjar from the United Kingdom. “As someone who has recently launched a business and now trades internationally, it has been extremely useful.  I have taken several of these online courses, but this is the first time that I have felt compelled to write to the convener.”

“This is my first experience with online education outside of the workplace, and it has been incredibly positive,” added Jennifer Pembroke Johnson of Chicago. “The subject matter could not be more timely and the syllabus and structure offer a good cadence for thought and reflection.” She also mentioned that “leveraging outside experts from a diverse corporate community has brought the subject matter to life. They are diverse in their points of view as well as the application of the global business principles. I have enjoyed learning about the subject matter through their eyes.”

Learn more or sign up here.