A Conversation with Joel Podolny: From Improving Content to Improving Engagement—20 Years of Lessons Learned

by | Mar 23, 2023

A central question during Joel’s tenure as Dean of the Yale School of Management and then Dean of Apple University was what makes one piece of learning content better than another—better at clarifying a particular point, prompting deeper reflection, or driving a desired change in someone’s behavior. Why is one fact, image, or story better than others that could have been chosen? When COVID hit, these questions took on added importance and urgency as it became clear that the teacher was becoming decentered in the learning experience, as reflected, of course, in the term remote teaching. And a new question arose: how does one best create collective engagement around learning content when the teacher is not as front and center to drive it? Taken together, these questions ultimately helped shape the vision for the digital platform of the company that he leads today, Honor Education. In this conversation, Dr. Podolny will share the lessons he has learned over the past 20 years addressing these questions.

Featured Speaker:

Joel Podolny
Co-Founder and CEO, Honor Education

Date: Thursday, April 6th, 2023
Time: 4:00 PM – 5:00 PM ET
Location: Butler Library, Room 203

About Joel Podolny

Joel is the co-founder and CEO of Honor Education. Prior to starting Honor Education in May 2021, he was Vice President at Apple and the founding Dean of Apple University, where he oversaw learning focused on leadership, management, and company culture for more than a decade. Before that, Joel served as Dean and Professor of Management at the Yale School of Management. He previously held professorships at the Harvard Business School and Stanford Graduate School of Business. He received his Ph.D. in Sociology from Harvard University.

About Honor Education

Honor Education is a teaching and learning platform for colleges, universities, and corporations, thoughtfully designed to drive collective engagement, equity, and curricular improvements in all educational settings. It was founded on the vision that all people should have access to a learning environment that fosters creative and critical thinking, community, and citizenry. For more information, please visit: www.honor.education

About PCoOL

The Provost’s Conversations on Online Learning (PCoOL) feature public talks by leading experts and peers on the future of education, specifically around online education. PCoOL events are free and open to members of the Columbia community with a valid University ID.

View past seminars and conversations at Columbia University on topics related to online learning on the Columbia Online website.