THE IMPACT OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP EDUCATION ON THE ENTREPRENEURIAL COMPETENCY OF UNIVERSITY STUDENTS. A QUASI-EXPERIMENTAL STUDY
University of Granada (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN15 Proceedings
Publication year: 2015
Conference name: 7th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 6-8 July, 2015
Location: Barcelona, Spain
Abstract:The implementation of the European Higher Education Area involves the incorporation of a competency-based educational model. The acquisition of entrepreneurial competence is considered one of the key competences by the European Commission and therefore it is one of the expected learning outcomes for university students. In this sense, the Strategic Framework for European Cooperation in Education and Training (ET 2020) of the European Commission sets out the strategic objective of fostering entrepreneurship at all levels of education and training.
The entrepreneurship competence is a composition of entrepreneurial attitude, skills and knowledge (European Commission, 2012). It is defined as the propensity to induce changes oneself, but also the ability to welcome and support innovation brought about by external factors by welcoming change, taking responsibility for one’s actions, to finish what we start, to know where we are going, to set objectives and meet them, and have the motivation to succeed. Entrepreneurship also includes planning, organizing, analyzing, communicating, doing, de-briefing, evaluating and recording progress in learning (European Commission Education and Training 2010 Work Programme).
Being generally accepted that entrepreneurship is a key element for social and economic development, policy makers in government and in the private sector have made this question a priority in their agendas and policies for action. The need to encourage entrepreneurship is all the greater in adverse situations and contexts, such as the recent economic crisis, which has caused severe damage to the business sector and employment.
According to the White Paper on Entrepreneurship in Spain (2011), entrepreneurial initiative is especially relevant for young people. Taking into account that these competencies can be taught and learnt, training activities aimed at developing the entrepreneurial capacity of young students are being conducted by most education institutions. Previous research has demonstrated the existence of a positive relationship between entrepreneurship education and entrepreneurial intention; however, some studies have obtained conflicting results. In some cases, the studies presented some methodological shortcomings.
Therefore, in this paper we intend to show new empirical evidence regarding the impact of entrepreneurship education on university students; in particular, we examine a sample of students of different degrees taught at the Faculty of Economics and Business Administration of the University of Granada (Spain). This research is based on a quasi-experimental design and the results will show how education training activities influence the entrepreneurial competencies of students. These findings may have important practical implications for the design and development of entrepreneurship education activities by educational institutions, governments and private entities.
Keywords: Entrepreneurship Education, Entrepreneurial Competency, Higher Education, Students.