Marketing Communication and Content Production

Gradia launched Marketing Communication and Content Production diploma programme with a new Chinese partner Shanghai Modern Circulation School, during autumn 2019. The programme ended on 10 January 2020 and was a joint effort with EduCluster Finland.

Students really liked the idea of learning by doing and having less traditional theory lectures

Entrepreneurship as a learning method

35 third-year business students aged 18-19, began studies in marketing communication and content production in October 2019 in accordance to the Finnish Vocational Qualification in Business. The programme highlighted entrepreneurship as a method in learning new skills and competences and gave a chance to complete one accredited Finnish module in business which 32 students achieved in January 2020.
As a part of the programme, students established so-called mini-companies and learnt the required competences by running those companies. Entrepreneurship is an efficient learning method. In addition to acquiring competence specific to business, students learnt so-called 21st century skills like problem-solving, collaboration and communication.

The programme was run by two Gradia experts, Ms Johanna Ärling and Ms Elina Maukonen, both working as business teachers at Gradia and Ms Anitta Peltola served as an evaluation expert together with a local working life representative.

Teamwork and hands-on exercises

Johanna describes that the training programme was based on teamwork and hands-on exercises. “Students really liked the idea of learning by doing and having less traditional theory lectures. In our programme, they had the permission to make mistakes and to learn from them. They appreciated the possibility of working in teams and sharing and testing their own ideas with working life representatives.”
“Naturally a different learning and teaching culture challenged us Finnish teachers but once students got used to collaborative, hands-on learning methods, the results were very good,” says Johanna who is experienced in running training programmes in China.

Enhancing employability

Although there are some differences, there are lot of similarities as well. “Both in Finland and China we all want our students to have a good chance to find a job after the graduation,” says Johanna. According to Johanna and Elina, Finnish VET qualifications are well applicable for the Chinese market. Finnish qualifications are competence-based and the competences are not dependent on national boundaries. “But since the Chinese are not familiar with competence-based structured qualifications there is a need to explain the system and contents carefully and make it easy to understand.”

Johanna and Elina say that they have learnt a lot by working as an expert overseas. “We have learnt about the Chinese business life, education and culture. Our experience helps us to develope the programmes even further to match the training with local needs."