The material consists of a two minute video clip from the 1986 movie "Back to School." Rodney Dangerfield plays Mr. Mellon, a wealthy auto manufacturer in the film. In a college level class, Mr. Mellon points out to the professor and his fellow classmates that they need to consider more than what just appears in the textbook. Mr. Mellon brings up real world topics such as: politicians, unions, zoning, and other areas that need to be considered. This material highlights the difference between learning business in school and doing business in the real world. The professor insists that students only need to learn theory, but the students are more interested in how to deal with corrupt politicians and organized labor.
This video provides information about what actually is relevant and important in business situations. Theory is fine to start, but other areas need to be considered as well. The video presents a good example of how classroom information interacts with the real world.
Target Student Population:
The focus is primarily for undergraduates, more specifically as an introduction to business students. High school level is a possibility, depending on the depth and focus.
Prerequisite Knowledge or Skills:
There are no prerequisites.
Type of Material:
This is a two minute video presentation.
This material is best used for college level business courses; this can initiate discussions in lower level classes. The material can be included as part of a lecture, to initiate a discussion, for debates or homework.
The material is compatible with latest versions of Internet Explorer, Google and Firefox. A video viewer is needed, such as Flash.
Evaluation and Observation
The material provides a key example of how classroom based theory must be appropriately applied to real world situations
The material seems to be focused solely on invoking a humorous response, and may contain misleading or inaccurate statements about the business environment. Some viewers may not see this as 'serious' because it is from a humorous movie.
Potential Effectiveness as a Teaching Tool
The material would make an excellent addition to class lecture on discussion on the differences between theory and practice. the video can also be used to discuss business ethics. The value in the video is in comparing and contrasting real world experiences - from someone who has experienced the business environment - with classroom discussions.
The material may present a misleading view of the business environment and the regulations associated with certain business practices, especially given its date of release.