HBS exhibit celebrates 100 years of the case method


Before 1953, the typical HBS classroom was configured as a lecture hall with the instructor standing in front of students who were seated in rows arranged in straight lines. With classrooms designed specifically for case method teaching, Aldrich Hall represented the School’s continued commitment to this pedagogy. Mock-up classroom for Aldrich Hall, 1951. HBS Archives Photograph Collection, Baker Library, Harvard Business School

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Harvard Business School’s (HBS) Baker Library Special Collections announced today the opening of a new exhibit, From Inquiry to Action: Harvard Business School & the Case Methodan exhibition marking the 100th anniversary of the teaching practice. The exhibit runs through November 2022, in the North Lobby of Baker Library | Bloomberg Center on the HBS campus.

Since the 1920s, HBS has been an innovator in the development and refinement of teaching with the case method, helping to shape business education programs and business leaders around the world. Based on participant-centered learning, the instructional approach of the case method facilitates discussions about real-life problems encountered in business, preparing students for roles as leaders, managers, and decision makers. It also encourages students to plan a course of inquiry — to analyze, listen, compare other perspectives — and choose a course of action.