Organization Management Journal


The discussion of threshold concepts is growing in the management education literature. These concepts create challenges for students and instructors since they act as barriers to learning. The reward for overcoming these obstacles is the opening of new ways of thinking that were not available before the student mastered the threshold concepts. We propose in this article that many students believe business education is “common sense” and do not understand that management is practice informed by theory. When students master the threshold concept concerning the “underlying game” of management, they begin to develop deeper and more meaningful understandings. From this perspective we demonstrate how we have used experiential exercises in an operations management class to facilitate active, social, and creative learning that exposes this threshold concept and moves the student through the preliminal, liminal, and postliminal stages of threshold concept mastery.