The Future of Action-Based Learning at Michigan Ross

Action-Based Learning at Michigan Ross has been a distinctive feature of the Ross curriculum for over three decades. Since MAP’s inception in 1992, ABL programs have grown to have a global reach and are now featured in almost every degree program. Each year, over 200 projects take place involving 1,000 students. The learning opportunity provided to our students and the impact on the sponsoring organizations is why ABL has sustained its importance for so long.

As Ross looks to the future and our commitment to remain a leader in this space, the learning objectives for ABL courses have been updated to better reflect and articulate the unique learning opportunity these projects provide. The new learning objectives are as follows:

  1. Define and solve problems to improve enterprise performance
    1. Define complex business problems, create and test hypotheses, analyze data, and deliver actionable recommendations utilizing frameworks learned in core courses. 
    2. Drive change and innovation within an organizational context.
  1. Think critically to identify opportunities and deliver impact
    1. Ethically evaluate tradeoffs of business decisions. 
    2. Be aware of bias and assumptions. 
    3. Consider the cultural context in which the project is taking place.
  1. Make decisions under uncertainty, ambiguity, and time pressure
    1. Plan, execute, control, and close projects successfully. 
    2. Navigate ambiguity, develop risk mitigation strategies, and adapt to unforeseen changes swiftly and effectively.
    3. Experience personal growth through intentional exposure to challenging opportunities, strengthening resilience through the process.
  1. Communicate persuasively to build leaders’ confidence and conviction to act
    1. Prepare and deliver compelling presentations and reports to stakeholders. 
    2. Develop negotiation skills and build consensus among team members and stakeholders.
  1. Work collaboratively in inclusive teams, with learning partners, and for your sponsor
    1. Lead diverse teams, manage conflicts, foster collaboration, and deliver shared success across learning partners, including sponsors and faculty advisors, through establishing and nurturing high-quality professional relationships.

For more information about ABL, visit the Ross website or contact Chris Tarnacki.

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