A new integrated case study is among the highlights of the recently updated Company Directors Course.

    Now in its 37th year, the Company Directors Course, our flagship program, has been updated for 2012-13.

    The course is a comprehensive and highly regarded learning program for directors, reviewed annually to ensure it retains currency and reflects leading practice for directors.

    Participants in the course learn what it takes to contribute to organisational governance and gain a thorough knowledge of the role and duties of being a director.

    A particular highlight this year is a new integrated case study, Vector International Limited. In the case study scenario, Vector has its initial roots in two bulk material transport family businesses originating in Western Australia, and was listed on the Australian Securities Exchange in 2001.

    The Vector case study is integrated throughout the course content. It builds to a crescendo in module 10, Learning into Practice, when participants tackle its issues as part of a simulated boardroom experience.

    Core facilitator Mark Coleman FAICD says in his experience, the case reflects what can happen in boardrooms in high-pressure situations.

    "We are looking to highlight that poor practice does exist — including poor director behaviours, such as not dealing with pressing issues as they arise," he says.

    "The case study does provide participants with the opportunity to recognise inappropriate practices and move themselves and their boards in a collegiate manner to raise the standards of director practice and performance."

    For the simulated board meeting in module 10, participants have to deal with issues and complexities as if they were directors on the Vector board under the same circumstances.

    To do this, they must draw on their own knowledge and experience, and the learnings of the previous nine modules.

    "We are ultimately asking participants to engage on the basis of what good practice would look like in these circumstances," says Coleman.

    Carmen Izurieta AAICD, senior education product manager in our Director and Board Development team, project-managed the update of the course for 2012-13.

    "The use of an integrated case study to support learning is particularly powerful," she says.

    "It provides continuity by developing threads through the various modules and across the breadth of the course, canvassing director duties and responsibilities, risk, strategy, finance, decision-making, board effectiveness and, finally, bringing the program to a close with an opportunity for participants to practically apply their learning."

    Other highlights for the 2012-13 update include:

    • Further profiling of our publication, Guide for Directors and Boards — delivering good corporate governance.
    • Updated case law examples to illustrate latest judgments.
    • Coverage of the Centro judgment, with a focus on reviewing and understanding financial statements.
    • Commentary on the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC).
    • Deepening utilisation of the Company Directors Corporate Governance Framework.

    To find out more about the Company Directors Course, please visit our website.

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