Ruben Houweling, Professor of Labour Law at Erasmus School of Law, aims to make online lectures more interesting and interactive, with the educative series ‘Casa Loco’. On 19 February 2021 in EM TV, Houweling explained how this new innovative teaching method contributes to online education. Casa Loco has a three-layered function.
On a micro-level, the series offers episodes and clips portraying relatable real-life problems, to use in lectures. On a macro-level, the series provides a possibility to address interdisciplinary issues, for which the expertise of different schools and studies can be used. Finally, teachers from different disciplines are offered the opportunity to talk to each other at a multidisciplinary level about situations in which students from different backgrounds find themselves.
Series for the entire university
Houweling points out that Casa Loco is not just limited to his course of Labour Law or to Erasmus School of Law. This series is made for the entire university. “[This series] is for the university. I am using it right now for my course in Labour Law, but it can be used by students from Economics as well [,for example]”.
Investment in innovation
The biggest challenges any teacher faces, are limited time and money. Creating a drama series costs money and takes much more time than preparing a regular lecture, for example. Houweling: “Casa Loco, per episode, is approximately somewhere between 6,000 and 8,000 euros, so that is quite expensive. At the same time, what we are looking into right now, is how we can continue with lower costs, or how we can broaden the support. It would be great if Casa Loco would go national.” Together with psychologists of Erasmus University Rotterdam, the impact of the series is researched, as well as whether the investment is worth it. At the same time, Houweling believes that this innovative idea will pay for itself because of the good publicity it generates.