Contrasting 4 Year Outcomes Associated With Introduction to Management Courses

Roldan / Journal of Management Education / November 2021

teacher facing a group of students

Management faculty members have had a longstanding interest in the design of the Introduction to Management Course as it presents an opportune point to provide students with the foundational skills for success in their Management Studies. Since many Management majors take these courses during their freshman year in the university, the courses are, intentionally or not, also settings for helping students transition to the university both academically and socially. This paper reports on a study of the 4-year outcomes associated with this potential of Introduction to Management courses to help with students’ transition into university-level studies. Specifically, it contrasts 4-year graduation outcomes among three different Introduction to Management courses taken by a freshman business student cohort of a large, public, university. The study results show a course that focused on life skill building was associated with better 4-year graduation outcomes than theory-driven and business overview classes. Contrary to expectations, the study indicated that there were no significant differences among students enrolled in the classes in terms of other important student characteristics known to impact graduation rates, including underrepresented minority (URM) and first-generation status, SAT or ACT scores, self-reported GPA, and exposure to university-level URM student success and achievement programs.