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Do MBA students learn more from live-problem projects or client-consulting projects?

Although experiential education has become the pedagogy of choice among many MBA programs, little is known about how students perceive its various real-time, problem-based learning projects.

In their research, TL Hill, Dennis Paris, Dave Nash and Gary Blau found that MBA students participating in live-problem projects (LPPs) reported higher levels of learning than those in client-consulting projects (CCPs). Students in CCPs courses worked directly with clients, and may have felt that client expectations to deliver a professional-grade product interfered with their academic priorities.

Overall, both LPPs and CCPs were well-received. The researchers suggest LPPs may benefit students who are learning core concepts, whereas CCPs may be suited for students integrating concepts from the entire MBA program in capstone courses.