A model of enterpreneurship education

Table of contents: The Kazakh-American Free University Academic Journal №2 - 2011

Author: Feoktistova Yelena, Caspian State University of technologies and engineering in honor of S. Yesenov, Kazakhstan

Training of entrepreneurs, who are capable of successful management of sustained business in the conditions of the world economic crisis, is one of the priority trends of specialist training by universities, oriented for innovation development.

In spite of the importance and great significance of entrepreneurs training in the framework of the state, this issue is not developed enough, in our opinion, in the areas of program evaluation and curricula design in the sphere of specialists training for entrepreneurship and business management.

Based on the experience of an organization and running of the Kazakh-Korean Higher school of innovative entrepreneurship, in cooperation with Hoseo University – an institute of global importance which trains CEOs of many world famous and global companies with a well known Graduate School of Entrepreneurship, and also on the basis of literature analysis we made an attempt to design a model of entrepreneurship education.

In our opinion, entrepreneurship education depends on many factors: approaches to education, skills and capabilities necessary for the entrepreneur, means of stimulating entrepreneur’s creativity (questions, activities, and assignments), techniques and activities for class efficiency, etc.

Conceptualizations of entrepreneurship vary in nature. Entrepreneurship can be a way of thinking and behaving that is opportunity based and holistic in approach (Timmons, 1999). Then, entrepreneurship results in creation, enhancement, realization and renewal of value, not just for business owners, but also for all participants and stakeholders (Timmons, 1999). Entrepreneurs are individuals who manage the uncertainties of the entrepreneurial environment, and embrace the chaos and ambiguity of change. Entrepreneurship occurs in all firms, in all enterprises, and in all sectors, imposing demands for organizations and individuals to develop entrepreneurial skills to cope with this uncertain and complex business environment.

It is a widely held view that entrepreneurs are action-oriented and that much of their learning is experimentally based (Rae and Carswell, 2000). Furthermore, entrepreneurs ‘learn by doing’ and ‘trial and error’ as well as problem solving and discovery (Deakins and Freel, 1998; Young and Sexton, 1997).

Many programs for entrepreneur training adopt a learning approach that required cognitive flexibility (Spiro et al., 1991), where learning results from the interaction between people having different experiences and perspectives (Goldman-Segall and Rao, 1998).

A synergistic learning approach is sometimes chosen to entrepreneurs’ education because it offers a high potential for collaborative learning between participants (Siebenhuner and Hoffman, 2002). The synergetic learning approach is grounded in constructivist learning theory; that is, the learner is actively involved in the joint enterprise of learning with the educator and together they create new meanings (Atherton, 2003). This approach allows for the articulation and interaction between different perceptions, interpretations and arguments by the participants involved. These interactions might result in discovery of concrete solutions to problems, the development of new ideas and the resolution of complex decision-making scenarios, and is therefore an appropriate approach for discovering entrepreneurship.

Synergistic learning makes use of participatory methods. The following were used in the discovering entrepreneurship program by Kanji and Greenwood (2001):

- Cooperation, where all participants together determine priorities; the responsibility to direct the process lay with entrepreneurs and facilitators.

- Co-learning, where all participants shared knowledge and created new understandings and worked together to form plans of action.

- Consultation, where nascent entrepreneurs’ opinions were sought and existing entrepreneurs and facilitators analyzed and decided on the course of action.

- Collective action, where nascent entrepreneurs set their own agendas and then carried out the action without direction from existing entrepreneurs and facilitators.

The facilitators involved in the delivery had to be willing and comfortable with risk taking and ‘shifting goal posts’, and had to possess good communication and sound conflict resolution skills (Kanji and Greenwood, 2001), with an emphasis on being a co-learner rather than the expert.

Luke Pittaway and Jason Cope also support the idea that a holistic approach can be used in entrepreneurship education, but it needs to be developed that can present to some extent multiple levels of analysis. For example, this thematic model suggests that study on pedagogy at the level of individual programs is inherently embedded in a wider context of the institution and government policy on entrepreneurship education. Inevitably, therefore, debates about appropriate pedagogy sit within the context of what entrepreneurship education is understood to ‘mean’ or what entrepreneurship education ‘is’ or what it is trying to ‘do’ , axioms that are themselves guided by contextual factors. It is also inevitable that these contextual factors are further influenced by the wider society and particularly its culture.

It is also possible to understand entrepreneurship education systemically; in the sense of being able to identify contextual factors; inputs into system; educational processes; and, outputs. The systemic nature of entrepreneurship education is, however, complicated by the fact that there is little clarity about what the outputs are designed to ‘be’. This lack of clarity about the intended outputs leads to significant diversity surrounding the inputs. In this sense the idea of ‘entrepreneurship education’ as one thing would appear to be rather problematic suggesting further effort is required to begin the development of detailed taxonomies and typologies based on current international practice.

Thus, entrepreneurship education, as a research domain, while gathering some momentum has a great deal more to do to integrate understanding across the different levels of research endeavor and needs to be better linked into general debates on adult learning, management learning and role of HE in general.

It is important to mention that there are some differences between Business school approach and entrepreneur real world approach, which are reflected in the table.

Table 1. Contrasting learning approaches; the business school approach versus and the entrepreneur real world approach

It is necessary to point out that entrepreneurs’ training on the basis of both Hoseo University Graduate School of Entrepreneurship (South Korea) and East-Kazakhstan State Technical University Kazakhstan-Korean high school of innovative entrepreneurship (Kazakhstan) entrepreneur real world approach is used. Most of the professors of Hoseo University who give lectures to entrepreneurs are the owners and CEOs of real businesses; they have necessary experience and can share it with the students. It is very important, in our opinion, that future and present entrepreneurs can get real experience that can be applied in real business situations.

Basic entrepreneurship skills are reflected in table 2. The most important, in our opinion, is creativity. Timmons (1994) has argued that creativity should be central to entrepreneurship education provision, and the concept of creativity has been a constant focus of educational thinking and practice (Torrance and Rockenstein, 1988). Furthermore, Gibb (1996) proposes that certain basic stimuli for entrepreneurial behavior lie naturally within the culture, talk structure and learning environment in higher education.

Table 2. Discovering entrepreneurship: key entrepreneurship capacities

In Jonston’s (2000) opinion, systematic approaches to the development of creativity amongst higher education students appear to be limited, particularly in the UK. The consequence is that prospective lectures and students find themselves with little practical guidance to action.

To develop future entrepreneur’s creativity it is necessary to aim the education to:

- nurture capabilities of personal and team creativity;

- promote understanding of the nature and role of creativity within a student’s individual social and economic contexts;

- overcome barriers to the creative process;

- develop frameworks within which to evaluate creative, entrepreneurial opportunities;

- enhance communication and presentation skills; and

- improve team building and working abilities.

Entrepreneurship is the innovatory process involved in the creation of an economic enterprise based on a new product or service which differs significantly from products or services in the way its production is organized or in its marketing.

Personal creativity is a process of becoming sensitive to or aware of problems, deficiency, and gaps in knowledge for which there is no learned solution; brining together existing information from the memory storage or external; defining the difficulty or identifying the missing elements; searching for solutions, making guesses; producing alternatives to solve the problem; testing and re-testing these alternatives; and perfecting them and finally communicating the results.

Without such action there can be no entrepreneurship. It is proposed that one key to unlocking the potential of entrepreneurship within an individual member of society, and the degree to which their personal creativity exists or can be stimulated, may be through appropriate educational interventions. The above definition suggests that such interventions should focus on the nurturing of innovation and creation, towards commercial application, through the heightening of personal qualities of reflecting, doing, valuing, feeling, behaving, and relating to others. They would aim to sensitize potential entrepreneurs to the value of a disposition to personal creativity as related to entrepreneurship, and develop skill in using creative techniques in relation to business idea generation and problem-solving. This contrasts quite sharply to traditional higher education curricula that emphasize sequences of instruction and examination in bodies of subject knowledge, and their associated methodologies, frequently organized within established disciplinary frameworks and leading to a university degree in a given subject of subjects (Johnston and Morrison, 1997).

In the present article we would like to share the experience of entrepreneurs’ training on the basis of MBA international program which was started with contract concluding on December 29, 2008.

Graduate School of Global entrepreneurship at Hoseo University was started in March, 2005.

The purpose of this school is to teach a systematic theory on starting new business and foster entrepreneurship to raise global talents for starting new business and consulting through special courses.

The goals of Graduate School of Global Entrepreneurship are promoting global entrepreneurship, raising global consultants for starting new business and the scope of study, support the activities of starting new business, promoting the capabilities to coordinate with overseas enterprises and concerning organizations.

Kazakhstan-Korean Higher School of Innovative Entrepreneurship at East-Kazakhstan State technical university in honor of D. Serikbayev (EKSTU) was established in April, 2009.

First master students were enrolled on September 1, 2009.

According to the contract and the agreement between the universities, the students study during their first year at EKSTU with participation of Hoseo University professors. They come to EKSTU to deliver lecturers three times a year. During the first year EKSTU organizes advanced training in English and Korean. At the end of the first year master students have to complete master dissertation on the topic of some business venture and with successful completion of studies get a diploma of master of management from EKSTU. During the second year the students of EKSTU study at Hoseo University and present a business plan of a start-up venture.

Professor Hong Kim, the dean of Graduate School of Global Entrepreneurship conducts lectures on the discipline of Innovative Entrepreneurship.

His lectures are a great stimulus for future entrepreneurs to start new businesses. They can obtain new ideas from the lectures and come up with their own new ones.

The contents of the lectures include:

- The questions every entrepreneur must answer: Goals, strategies, capacity;

- How to write a great business plan;

- How entrepreneurs craft strategies that work;

- Milestones for successful venture planning;

- Strategies vs. Tactics from a venture capitalist;

- Bootstrap finance;

- Commercializing technology what the best company do, etc.

REFERENCES

1. Atherton, J.S. (2003) ‘Learning and teaching Constructivism’ [Online] UK, available at http://www.dmu.ac.uk/~jamesa/learning/constructivism.htm, accessed 26 March 2004.

2. Deakins, D. and Freel, M. (1998) ‘Entrepreneurial Learning and the Growth Process in SMEs’, The Learning Organization 5(3): 144-55.

3. Gibb, A. (1996) ‘Entrepreneurship and small business management: Can we afford to neglect them in the 21st century business school?’, British Academy of management 7: 309-21.

4. Goldman-Segall, R. and Rao, S.V. (1998) ‘A Collaborative On-line Digital Data Tool fro Creating Living Narratives in Organizational Knowledge Systems’, in System Sciences 1998. Proceedings of the Thirty-First Hawaii International Conference, 6-9 January, available at: http://orion.njit.edu/merlin/ publications/publicmain.html, accessed 25 May 2006.

5. Johnston, B. & Morrison A. (1997) ‘Developing Undergraduate Creative Thinking for Entrepreneurship: A pilot Class’, paper presented at the International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behavior’s Enterprise and learning conference, university of Paisley, Uk, September.

6. Kanji, N. and Greenwood, L. (2001) Participatory Approaches to Research and Development IIED: Learning from Experience. London: International Institute for Environment and development.

7. Rae, D. and Carswell, M. (2000) ‘Using a Life-story Approach in Entrepreneurial Learning: The Development of a Conceptual Model and its Implications in the Design of Learning Experiences’, Education and Training 42 (4/5): 220-7.

8. Siebenhuner, B. and Hoffman, E. (2002) ‘Participatory Learning Process in the Development of Sustainable Products’, paper presented at the Towards Sustainable Product Design 7th International Conference, 28-29 October, British

9. Timmons J.A. (1999) New Venture Creation: Entrepreneurship for the 21st Century. London: McGrawHill.

10. Timmons, J. (1994) New Venture Creation. Chicago: Irwin.

11. Torrance, E. & Rockenstein, Z. (1988) ‘Styles of Thinking and Creativity’, in R. Schmeck (ed.) Learning strategies and learning styles. New York: Plenum Press.

12. Young, J. E. and Sexton, D. L. (1997) “Entrepreneurial Learning: A Conceptual Framework’, Journal of Enterprising Culture 5(3): 223-48.



Table of contents: The Kazakh-American Free University Academic Journal №2 - 2011

  
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