Evaluating Content Dimensions in Entrepreneurship Education
24 Pages Posted: 8 Dec 2011
Date Written: November 30, 2011
Interest in entrepreneurship education is growing over the world, especially in innovation based economies, such as Denmark (GEM, 2010). However, we know rather little about the outcomes of entrepreneurship education, in particular with respect to which type of course content produces the best results (i.e. most high performing entrepreneurs) and how this affects different types of students. There is a great variety of different views in the field of research concerning the content and structure of entrepreneurship courses, but no comprehensive study has yet been done in which these competing views are clearly articulated as rivals and tested against each other. There is also a lack of programme evaluations that use control groups and have a longitudinal design (Gorman, Hanlon & King, 1997; Karlsson & Moberg, 2011; Matlay, 2008). Those that have this setup often experience methodological problems due to their conceptual framework (Krueger, 2009), or they have a view of entrepreneurship that does not take into account the advancements within research that have been made during the last decade (Sarasvathy, 2008). Thus, we clearly need to dig deeper into this field in order to create methods and models that allow us to evaluate the outcomes of different types of entrepreneurship courses.
In the beginning of 2011, the Danish Foundation for Entrepreneurship – Young Enterprise initiated a research project with the aim to further our understanding of the type of impact entrepreneurship education and different educational designs have on different types of students. Two longitudinal surveys, one with a focus on elementary- and secondary-level education and one with focus on tertiary-level education, will be performed and databases with students from all levels of the Danish educational system will be created. The surveys will use entrepreneurial self-efficacy (Mauer, Neergaard & Kirketerp, 2009) as a performance indicator, but in order to generate robust results the development of new measurement tools is needed. In this paper the initial phases of this project and the research design of these two surveys will be presented. The development of a new ESE scale and the results from the pilot surveys will also be presented.
Keywords: Entrepreneurship education, entrepreneurial self-efficacy, impact evaluation, curricular design, quasi-experimental design
JEL Classification: A2, I21, I25, L26
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