The main goal of Universities of Applied Sciences (UAS) is to focus on education, research and development, and regional development. The Learning by Developing (LbD) model (Juvonen, Marjanen & Meristö 2019) is very topical now in Haaga-Helia UAS because we are in the process of renewing our master curricula. This model emphasizes that successful actions require more cooperation among teachers, students and working life stakeholders. Raij (2019, 16-29) presents these in the didactic triangle of the LbD action model (ibid.: 22) and she concludes that “The team of teachers, working life representatives and students enable renewing working life by working together in research and development projects.” In this collaboration, not only the students benefit and learn. The current and future benefits of business and UAS collaboration is probably the highest during the thesis project according to the feedback from 91 managers (Jakubik 2018).
However, to achieve the mutual benefits there is an increased research oriented attitude is required from teachers/educators. Collaborative learning is the learning approach in the renewed master’s programmes at Haaga-Helia. Collaborative learning is based on four principles: “placing the learner at the center, emphasizing interactions, working in groups, and developing solutions to real challenges” (NMC Horizon Report 2017: 20). By solving authentic business problems together (Jakubik 2017) all participants benefit and learn.
Teachers as knowledge workers are motivated by purpose, autonomy and mastery. Their purpose is to help students to succeed, as Haaga-Helia’s slogan states Haaga-Helia opens doors to future careers. Teachers are self-directed and they require autonomy in their work. By giving autonomy to teachers results in increased engagement and extra efforts. Furthermore, teachers aim to continuously develop themselves, develop their ways of teaching for the advantage of students. This profession requires passion and drive toward improvements. Teachers want to do valuable contributions. The journey to development and mastery requires that teachers take the research attitude.
What are the benefits of the research attitude of teachers? The benefits are for Haaga-Helia, teachers and for students. Haaga-Helia benefits from publications and from earning an image domestically and abroad as a university, which delivers business value. Haaga-Helia promotes teachers’ research activities by providing conditions (e.g. supporting doctoral studies, conference participations, and publications of teachers) and creating forums (e.g. competence groups) for teachers to develop. Teachers who do research themselves able to benefit from research during their teaching. They become more convincing, more credible for the students as they do what they preach. However, walking the talk is not easy. We know that doing research is a continuous struggle, and it requires extra efforts. Finally, who benefits most are the students and their organizations because they receive quality education with real impacts.
Jakubik, M. 2018. Masters Bring Business Benefits – Proved by Finnish Managers. TOJET – The Turkish Online Journal of Educational Technology. Special Issue for INTE-ITICAM-IDEC, Volume 2, November 2018, pp. 65-77. Available: http://www.tojet.net/special/2018_12_3.pdf and https://www.researchgate.net/publication/330324340_Masters_Bring_Business_Benefits_-_Proved_By_Finnish_Managers Accessed: March 27, 2019.
Jakubik, M. 2017. Solving business problems together. Case: A master’s degree programme in Finland. Journal of Systemics, Cybernetics and Informatics: JSCI. Volume 15, Number 4, Year 2017, pp. 53-57. Available: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/319911026_Solving_Business_Problems_Together_Case_A_Master’s_Degree_Programme_in_Finland Accessed: March 27, 2018.
Juvonen, S., Marjanen, P. & Meristö, T. (eds.) 2019. Learning by Developing 2.0. Case Studies in Theory and Practice. PunaMusta Oy, Helsinki.
NMC Horizon Report: 2017. Higher Education Edition. New Media Consortium, EDUCAUSE Learning Initiative, EDUCAUSE Program. Available: https://www.unmc.edu/elearning/_documents/NMC_HorizonReport_2017.pdf Accessed: March 27, 2019.
Raij, K. 2019. Summarising the Basis of LbD for Further Development – Review. In Juvonen, S., Marjanen, P. & Meristö, T. (eds.) 2019. Learning by Developing 2.0. Case Studies in Theory and Practice. PunaMusta Oy, Helsinki. pp. 16-29.