Title: Project outsource: providing students with project management experience using contractors

Authors: Herbert Remidez; Sri Beldona

Addresses: College of Business, University of Dallas, 1845 East Northgate Drive, Irving, TX 75062, USA ' College of Business, University of Dallas, 1845 East Northgate Drive, Irving, TX 75062, USA

Abstract: This article describes a service-learning assignment that incorporates independent contractors into the classroom. The assignment is designed to facilitate students learning technical and interpersonal aspects of project management through practice managing a project, and it involves students managing a distributed team member. Service-learning projects address the motivational shortcomings of traditional instructional approaches by having students develop solutions for outside stakeholders. However, traditional service-learning projects are limited by the skills of the students in the course. The project outsource assignment is novel in at least three ways. First, unlike many service-learning assignments, it is effective in online and traditional settings. Second, it provides students with practice managing a distributed team member. Third, incorporating skilled contract workers enables students to undertake a wider range of service-learning projects. The article describes the assignment, objectives, process, results, and transferability aspects of the assignment.

Keywords: project management courses; cooperative learning; instructional design; service learning; independent contractors; higher education.

DOI: 10.1504/IJIOME.2013.054293

International Journal of Information and Operations Management Education, 2013 Vol.5 No.2, pp.105 - 114

Received: 04 May 2012
Accepted: 06 Nov 2012

Published online: 18 Jul 2014 *

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