The Great Rotation: Experience-Based Learning in Business Education at a Distance in 2020


  • Tom Davis University of Pittsburgh
  • Debbie Good University of Pittsburgh
  • Kiersten Maryott University of Pittsburgh


Although the abrupt emergence of COVID-19 in March of 2020 was shocking, it was not without precedent, either in its disruption to society or in its acceleration of online learning within higher education. However, there were key differences in how events unfolded around the COVID-19 pandemic and the specific impact on universities’ experience-based learning (EBL) courses. This paper examines the virtual/remote adaptations of three EBL courses at the University of Pittsburgh’s Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business and College of Business Administration (“Pitt Business”) as case studies in identifying and extending best practices for EBL that have emerged during this difficult chapter in global history. The framework for analysis is a novel adaption of Moore’s theory of transactional distance in distance education overlaid on synchronous and asynchronous dimensions to form a thorough view of opportunities to strengthen EBL going forward, whether in person or remotely. Early indications suggest that increased context, consistency, and collaboration correlate highly to improved student satisfaction and outcomes in a virtual/remote environment.






Innovations and Future Directions in Education