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The Learning Conference 2003

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Presentation Details


Knowing the World and All That is in It: A New Approach to Developing International Literacy Amongst College Students for Today’s Global Economy

Prof. David C. Wyld.

Those involved in business higher education today clearly face a fundamental challenge on how to deal with two intersecting trends. The first is that in response to the growing globalization and interdependency of the world economy, colleges are seeking to "internationalize" their business curricula. Increasingly, acceding to both the demands of prospective employers and students, along with the requirements of accrediting bodies, schools are adding both courses and majors in international business. Yet, at a moment in history where both business in practice and in education are becoming more global, the second trend rears its head. That trend is the unmistakable fact that today's American business students are burdened by being LESS geographically knowledgeable and LESS internationally aware than both their competitors abroad and their predecessors at home. This is at a time when knowledge of the physical and cultural dimensions of geography has been elevated to being a “critical business skill.”

Recent studies by both academicians and the National Geographic Society underscore the seriousness of what has become known as “Geographic Illiteracy” in the United States. This paper overviews these findings on the state of Americans’ geographic awareness – or rather unawareness. It then looks at the roots of the increasing lack of geographic knowledge, cross-cultural insight and world affairs awareness among students in the United States.

The paper then examines a potential groundbreaking solution - the International Literacy Curriculum being employed by an AACSB-accredited business school in the United States. It is based on the new book, INTERNATIONAL LITERACY: A GEOGRAPHIC BRIEFING FOR TODAY’S BUSINESS STUDENTS (ISBN: 0536746699). We will overview this focused curriculum and see the dramatic improvements in student geographic knowledge that can be garnered through its employment.


Prof. David C. Wyld  (United States)
Professor of Management
College of Business & Technology Department of Management
Southeastern Louisiana University

Dr. David C. Wyld currently serves as the Mayfield Professor of Management at Southeastern Louisiana University in Hammond, Louisiana. He is a widely published and cited for his academic and professional work on a variety of management topics. Dr. Wyld is the author of the new book, INTERNATIONAL LITERACY: A GEOGRAPHIC BRIEFING FOR TODAY’S BUSINESS STUDENTS (ISBN: 0536746699) from Pearson Custom Publishing.

  • Geography
  • Geographic Education
  • International Business
  • International Management
  • Curriculum
  • Pedogogy

(Virtual Presentation, English)