Humanities & Management, when NEOMA BS co-creates its courses / Interview with Xavier ENSELME, Preparatory class teacher at the Lycée Henri IV

Since the beginning of the 2018 academic year, NEOMA BS Master in Management students have had the opportunity to follow a comprehensive Humanities course. One of the programme's key modules is the "Humanities and Management" course. Comprising 5 sessions in the original format, this module has allowed students to take a closer look at various aspects of the notions of work. The sessions were developed in partnership with a preparatory class teacher. Xavier Enselme, a preparatory class teacher of Economics at the Lycée Henri IV, co-designed the second session that focuses on the economy and work. He takes a look back and shares his opinion on this experience.

1. NEOMA BS :  At a time when everyone is talking about continuity from preparatory class to business school, what does this mean to you and what are the different ways of making this continuity possible?

thumb Xavier ENSELME2Xavier ENSELME preparatory class teacher of Economics at the Lycée Henri IV : NEOMA BS is a pioneer in setting up an initiative like the Humanities and Management course. After all, according to the feedback I receive from my students, preparatory classes and business schools operate with a different rationale. Previously, students were not really concerned by this notion of continuity, but their expectations are changing, and now there is a growing need for a sense of meaning and continuity.
The forthcoming reform of the baccalaureate will provide an opportunity for a change of mind-set and approach to preparatory class work. The challenge is not simply to create a sense of continuity, but more generally to converge the way we work in preparatory classes and business schools. Indeed, all the teaching during the two years of preparatory class is oriented towards competition. However, in the Humanities and Management course at NEOMA, students are asked to do something that I believe corresponds more precisely to their expectations: oral expression, the ability to work in a groups, setting up projects, etc.

2. NEOMA BS : How was the course co-created with the NEOMA BS teachers? How do you think you complement one another and how is this expressed?

Xavier ENSELME : Here too, there are major differences between preparatory class and business school. In the preparatory class, the teacher is alone and the work is very individual. The way the Humanities and Management course is put together is very different. During the preparation of the module, everyone reads each other's work, shares their thoughts and then we are able to improve things. It's a great way to work! I am convinced that it is important to have access to the experience of other teachers.

3. NEOMA BS : According to you, how important are the Humanities or the human sciences in Business Schools today?

Xavier ENSELME : For me, it is essential that students are able to decipher the world around them. We give them a number of resources, thanks in particular to the topics covered in the Humanities and Management course through the selected authors or practical cases. In this way, we push their thinking on ethics, justice, equity in companies, or the question of teamwork…
These issues are fundamental for students who will be confronted with very practical questions of wage inequality and inequality in the treatment of people. It is good that they have considered such issues, even if it may seem a little theoretical to them at first.

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