Yaghi, A. (2008). Using Petra Simulation in teaching graduate courses in human resource management: A hybrid pedagogy. Journal of Public Affairs Education, 399-412.
The Petra simulation project is a hybrid pedagogy developed to teach master’slevel courses in human resources management by incorporating traditional teaching with role-playing. PSP aims to improve students’ understanding of theories and applications of human resources management in the public sector through a semester-long series of learning activities inside and outside the classroom. During the semester, students form groups and work as teams to perform several tasks: (a) lead class discussion of human resources topics, (b) analyze existing personnel systems, (c) develop a personnel system for a mythical city—Petra— from the ground up and write recommendations for system implementation, (d) defend the constructed personnel system, and (e) complete two take-home exams. This paper reports on these activities, in which 40 master of public administration students have participated. Based on a survey with 19 close-ended questions, 82 percent of students rated the Petra simulation project successful and 77 percent believed it satisfied their learning needs. This study calls on graduate faculty to diversify their teaching methods in order to improve learning outcomes.