Instructor Insights

Advice for Educators: Partner with Practitioners

"I wouldn’t try to teach this course—even with all the work I’ve done in the field—by myself. The course involves so much material; you need a team."
— Joseph Hadzima

In this section, Joseph Hadzima advises educators interested in teaching a course like 15.S21 Nuts and Bolts of Business Plans to partner with practitioners in the field.

This course has a diverse audience; we have participants from MIT and from the community. That can be challenging, but the thing that unifies the course is offering practical examples of the concepts we teach. I’ve been fortunate enough over the years to have been involved in hundreds of companies, so I can speak about almost any of the course topics from some degree of first or secondhand experience. I think this makes the course more captivating.

If you are interested in teaching a course like this, and your background is mostly academic, I would encourage you to get some real practitioners involved in the course. Make sure they’re passionate about their ventures, because then you can provide the theoretical framework (which is key), and they can demonstrate how the theory plays out in practice.

I wouldn’t try to teach this course—even with all the work I’ve done in the field—by myself. The course involves so much material; you need a team.

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