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GSERM: A Milestone in my Research Journey

Every year The University of St. Gallen offers 10 scholarships to GBSN member schools in developing countries to attend its Global School in Empirical Research Methods (GSERM). These scholarships are intended to encourage like-minded motivated scholars to learn and discuss research methodologies in their respective domains. I was fortunate to be one of scholarship recipients for participating at GSERM hosted by University of St. Gallen in Switzerland. I am pursuing my research in the area of accounting with specific focus on management control systems. I also work as assistant professor of accounting at Institute of Management Technology Nagpur in India. As a professionally qualified accountant form Chartered Institute of Management Accounting (CIMA), I used to work for an automobile major in India. My passion for teaching and learning behavioral aspects of accounting and control propelled me to take up a career in academia.

As a part of the program I took two courses in regression analysis at GSERM. The first course titled ‘Regression II Ð Linear Models’ was offered by Prof. Brian Pollins of Ohio State University. I had some prior background in statistics at graduate level where I had studied basics of regression analysis. Professor Pollins has excellent command over the subject. He discussed some advanced aspects of regression using matrix algebra approach. We were also made to use programming language “R” for in-class exercises and take-home assignments. It was for the very first time that I developed a deep understanding of concepts that work behind the regression equations. The course truly made me more and more curious about advanced topics and pushed me to read theoretical underpinnings very carefully. Another very useful course that I took at GSERM was ‘Regression II’ by Prof. Timothy McDaniel of Buena Vista University. Prof. Tim’s hand holding and patience helped us to dive deeper into advanced topics of regression analysis with confidence. His friendly teaching style also made many of us ask him lots of doubts and clarifications on our research data. Apart from regression I also picked-up some vital professional teaching skills from Prof. Tim which I’m now using in my classroom teaching at IMT. Both courses were based on intensive discussion and deliberation and effort was made by professors to strengthen the research foundation of participants. Moreover, there were workshop/preparatory lectures on “R”, matrix algebra and statistics for helping students to brush-up basics before attending the classes.

I lived in St. Gallen for over two weeks. It was a true “Swiss” experience in terms of hospitality. Not only the quality of teachers and participants but also the State-of-the-art campus makes the whole learning experience amazing. Support extended by Dr. Knopf Hans-Joachim, Sandra Thalmann, Carolina LeLaidier and other staff members was impeccable. From design of classrooms to meticulous planning of social events, GSERM journey makes you feel special. I made many new friends among participants. The networking opportunity was brilliant. The lovely cozy town of St. Gallen has so much to offer. I took out time from the busy schedule to enjoy things like city touring, bike riding, taking evening walks and making a short trip to mesmerizing Appenzell. I consider myself very fortunate to have been at GSERM 2017. I sincerely consider this program as being one of the milestones in my research journey.

Anil Kshatriya is an Assistant Professor of Accounting at Institute of Management Technology, Nagpur

It was a true “Swiss” experience in terms of hospitality. Not only the quality of teachers and participants but also the state-of-the-art campus makes the whole learning experience amazing.Anil Kshatriya, Institute of Management Technology, Nagpur