Academic journal article Academy of Educational Leadership Journal

Adapting the Marketing Educational Environment for Multi-Cultural Millennials: The Chinese Experience

Academic journal article Academy of Educational Leadership Journal

Adapting the Marketing Educational Environment for Multi-Cultural Millennials: The Chinese Experience

Article excerpt


Purpose of the Study: Marketing educators must adapt their teaching methodologies to reach technology savvy millennials. The task becomes increasingly complex when teaching multi-cultural millennial students for whom English is a second language.

Method/Design and Sample: A study was conducted with one hundred twenty-three Chinese millennials enrolled in an undergraduate, quantitative marketing class taught by the same English-speaking instructor during different semesters in the U.S. and in China. In China, the use of video lecture capture materials as well as face-to-face lecture provided the Chinese students with a blended course format. In the U.S., the class was taught using only face-to-face lecture. Upon course completion, the Chinese students were asked to evaluate their satisfaction with six specific aspects and the overall experience of the learning paradigm in which they were enrolled. Additionally, the students' course grades were compared. It was hypothesized that the Chinese students enrolled in the blended course would experience higher satisfaction and grades. All statistical comparisons of the two groups were performed using a one-tail t-test.

Results: Results demonstrate that the Chinese millennials in the blended class felt that repeated viewing of the video materials was necessary to facilitate learning, had higher performance, and were more satisfied with the marketing educational experience.

Value to Marketing Educators: This study is important to marketing educators who are striving to teach millennials in a culturally inclusive environment. As university classrooms fill with an increasing number of international students and as we prepare domestic students to enter the global economy, incorporation of appropriate technologies can aid marketing educators in enhancing the learning experience and in building intercultural competencies.

Key Words: Millennials; Blended; Chinese; Technology; Multi-Cultural


As noted by Hawes (2004), "Effective teachers must evolve to achieve success within a constantly changing environment." Part of the changing educational environment involves meeting the needs of the technology savvy millennials. Although the definition of millennial differs by source, generally millennials are considered those born in the 1980' s or 1990' s and in the 20-35 age bracket. According to a study by Zickuhr at the Pew Research Center (2011), millennials were found to be far more likely to own technology devices than previous generations. Additionally, millennials were found to take advantage of a wider range of functions on those devices. For example while most cell phone users were determined to use only two non-voice functions (photo and text messaging), a majority of millennials use an additional five functions (online, email, games, music, and video). Millennials were raised in a technology rich environment. Generally speaking, this generation does not consider computers or digital devices as technology. In fact, millennials may hold the opinion that technology is viewed as such only by those who were born before it was invented.

Technology pervades the way millennials learn, play and communicate. Their penchant for technology leads them to be active information seekers and information creators. They are multitaskers, collaborative, connected and social. The life of millennials is 24-7. Thus, the anytime, anyplace educational environment is well suited to their lifestyle. However, many advanced marketing classes, such as quantitative marketing research, are only offered in the traditional face-to-face environment. Through the incorporation of cooperative, discovery-based, active learning exercises along with much class participation and discussion, the face-to-face learning experience can be made more productive and rich for the new generation of learners. However, the exact same face-to-face pedagogy may prove disadvantageous for millennials who experience English as a second language. …

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