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Learning From Steve Jobs & Greta Thunberg: How AI Is Leveling Up Learning At Business School

From developing a modern skillset to learning from global leaders. Learn about how business schools are implementing AI into their curriculums and how it will elevate your skillset

Thu Feb 29 2024

In the ever-evolving business landscape, staying ahead of the curve is crucial for success. Having a firm grounding in modern concepts will put you ahead of the competition and make you an asset in any workplace. 

An increasingly important part of the modern workplace is artificial intelligence (AI). 

As industries embrace AI and technology, business schools must adapt their curriculum to ensure students are well-equipped for the challenges of the future workplace.

Integrating AI into business school programs can not only prepare you for the future but it might also push the boundaries of your thinking.

Here is how one business school in Europe is bringing AI into the classroom:

Real-world relevance of AI in the classroom

One of the top advantages of business schools embracing AI is students developing skills that align with the real-world demands of the workforce. Many industries now leverage AI technologies to streamline processes, analyze vast amounts of data, and make informed decisions. 

In fact, according to a survey by MIT Technology Review, 84% of executives believe that AI will be a major competitive advantage for their business. 

By incorporating AI into the classroom, students can gain practical skills that are directly applicable in their future careers, making them more marketable and adaptable.

One institute that is leading the way in driving innovation and entrepreneurship is NEOMA Business School. The school, which has campuses in Paris, Rouen, and Reims, actively teaches students how to generate business ideas with AI in mind. 

Alain Goudey, associate dean for digital, is passionate about the integration of AI and how it can benefit both the students and the business school.

“Business schools need to evolve to integrate this type of technology—that’s what we’re trying to develop,” he says. 

Enhanced problem-solving and critical thinking

AI-based projects in the business school classroom may encourage you to think critically and creatively.

Understanding, interpreting, and leveraging AI tools may enhance students' problem-solving skills, preparing them for leadership roles where innovation is key.

Alain impresses on his students the need to make use of AI and incorporate it into their problem solving. This is especially clear in the MSc in Data Analytics class, where students apply AI when creating innovative, immersive tech projects. 

The students’ implementation of AI in their projects exists both in presentation style and ideas. Some students used ChatGPT to help them animate the discussion and liven the debate. 

One of the projects at NEOMA is SmartRoom—an AI-equipped room that analyzes students’ posture, visual contact, tasks, and participation in class to help avoid attention loss. 

Another is Project Luna: a gadget that gives pet owners a comprehensive view of their animal’s health to avoid potential illnesses.

Alain encourages creative presentations that incorporate AI, a skill that he says students can transfer to their workplace after graduation. 

Interactive learning beyond the business school classroom

The integration of AI-powered online databases takes learning beyond the confines of the classroom. 

These platforms can adapt to individual learning styles, providing tailored resources, quizzes, and assessments. Additionally, students can access up-to-date information and case studies, ensuring that their education remains relevant and current.

NEOMA has developed an online learning platform to encourage students to spend time navigating and working through the iLearning courses, rather than dedicating their time to on-demand streaming services, such as Netflix.

“Our biggest competitors in online education are content streaming platforms. To compete, we must maintain high quality and appealing content and pedagogy while maximizing the fun and experience of learning,” says Alain.

The business school’s new iLearning courses are taught in a gameplay-like format on their virtual campus. Using storytelling techniques not dissimilar to a Netflix series, students will be assigned a character and asked to make decisions and complete objectives.

A ‘deep fake’ AI version of Alain appears on this platform, teaching students navigating the platform about AI and what they need to know for their courses. 

Not only does their teacher appear in the AI world, but so do inspirational celebrities such as Greta Thunberg and Steve Jobs. These avatars elevate the learning experience and help capture the students attention, helping keep them away from Netflix. 

Skill development for the future

As AI continues to reshape industries, the demand for professionals with AI-related skills is on the rise. Integrating AI into the business school curriculum allows students to develop these sought-after skills, including programming, data analysis, and machine learning. 

Graduates equipped with AI proficiency are not only better positioned in the job market but are also more capable of contributing to and driving innovation within their organizations.

NEOMA has made edtech a priority since AI has started to proliferate, both in the classroom and in its virtual campus.

The AI-powered courses not only allow the business school to be an online competitor, but also give students the chance to understand and develop their skills in the future of work where they’ll spend a significant time working and interacting with colleagues online. 

Incorporating AI into the business school curriculum is not just a response to technological advancements; it is an investment in the future success of students and organizations, believes Alain.

Using AI can teach students to push the boundaries of their thinking, facilitate interactive learning beyond the classroom, and prepare students to navigate the challenges and opportunities of the global business world.