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Entrepreneurship education: towards an industry sector approach

Ita Richardson (Lero – the Irish Software Engineering Research Centre and Department of Computer Science and Information Systems, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland)
Briga Hynes (Department of Management and Marketing, University of Limerick, Limerick, Ireland)

Education + Training

ISSN: 0040-0912

Article publication date: 25 April 2008

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to consider the requirements for an industry sector approach to entrepreneurship education – the information and communications technology (ICT) sector. A modified Process Framework for Entrepreneurship Education is presented focusing specifically on ICT. The primary components of the Process Framework are described (inputs, process and content, assessment and outputs) to assist in the design of relevant and targeted entrepreneurship education courses to create an entrepreneurial mindset for graduates in this sector. This Framework can be modified to suit courses focusing on other industry sectors.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on experiential learning and industry sector knowledge, an existing Process Framework for Entrepreneurship Education is modified.

Findings

The Process Framework for Entrepreneurship Education can be modified for a specific sector. Inputs to the process include the personal profiles and personality characteristics of the students. The recognition that particular skills may be required within a sector should be catered for when developing the content focus of the process. Furthermore, the teaching focus should include action learning, problem based learning and discovery teaching. Consideration of all of these elements will help ensure that the entrepreneurship teaching process will develop entrepreneurial‐focused students within the sector. Entrepreneurship education is a flexible learning mode easily modified to accommodate changing workplace and employee needs. The use of the process framework provides for a set of useful and relevant guidelines on the key aspects which should be addressed and used as a checklist in attempting to modify and design suitable and relevant entrepreneurship education programmes for specific industry sectors.

Originality/value

This paper demonstrates that educators need to consider entrepreneurship for industry sectors, thus presenting the requirement for an inter‐disciplinary approach to entrepreneurship. It does so through the refinement of an existing Process Framework for Entrepreneurship Education, taking the specific example of Information and Communications Technology. While the framework can be modified for use in other sectors, this paper presents the integration of and highlights the synergy that exists in the linking of entrepreneurship with the technical disciplines.

Keywords

Citation

Richardson, I. and Hynes, B. (2008), "Entrepreneurship education: towards an industry sector approach", Education + Training, Vol. 50 No. 3, pp. 188-198. https://doi.org/10.1108/00400910810873973

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited