Enterprise education: towards a framework for effective engagement with the learners of today

Jason Turner, Gary Mulholland

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
128 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

Purpose: The aims of this exploratory research are to examine young learner attitudes towards enterprise education within the context of a University led initiative to construct a sustainable framework which benefits identified stakeholders. Design/methodology/approach: The research used self-completed questionnaires with 117 Business Studies students in Stages S4, S5 and S6 from secondary schools across Dundee and Business students from Years 1, 2, 3 and 4 at one University in Dundee, Scotland. Findings: The research reveals that respondents positively engage with enterprise education and felt that their project management, creative thinking, communication skills and confidence were enhanced by the activity of real-world business challenges. The findings support the notion that an enterprising spine embedded in the academic curriculum better equip the learner with the necessary hard and soft skills required for the employment market but not necessarily to be entrepreneurial. Research limitations/implications: A limitation of this research was the sample size, which although representative of the pupil and student cohorts associated to the various stages of education being studied at the particular time of data collection, and is suitable for an exploratory study, the research would have benefited from being both larger and complimented by more of a qualitative component beyond the inclusion of open-ended questions. Practical implications: As an exploratory study which informs a wider comparative study into enterprise education, the research examines learner’s perspectives and the measures they feel are required for effective engagement with enterprise education activities in schools and Universities. The findings should assist education providers deliver a better learning experience and the learners with improved enterprising and social skills, particularly the building of confidence. Originality/value: The research should prove useful to educational establishments who are considering the implementation of, or further engagement with, enterprise education and involvement with the business community and how such activities impact on their learners.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)801-816
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Management Development
Volume36
Issue number6
Early online date30 May 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 14 Aug 2017

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