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From craft to science: Teaching models and learning processes in entrepreneurship education

Alain Fayolle (Strategy and Organisation Department, EM Lyon Business School, Ecully, France)
Benoit Gailly (Louvain School of Management – Institut d'Administration et de Gestion, Université Catholique de Louvain, Louvain‐la‐Neuve, Belgium)

Journal of European Industrial Training

ISSN: 0309-0590

Article publication date: 29 August 2008




The aim of this article is to offer a conceptual framework in entrepreneurship education largely inspired by education sciences and discuss its two main levels, the ontological and educational levels. This framework is then used to discuss various types of entrepreneurship teaching programs, focusing on three broad categories of learning processes.


This article uses intensive reviews of literature in the fields of education and entrepreneurship. The teaching framework and the derived propositions are intended to provide a bridge between education sciences and the field of entrepreneurship and seeks to stress the scientific legitimacy of entrepreneurship education.


Finds that there is a need to reconsider entrepreneurship education in its wide diversity, both from an ontological and pedagogical point‐of‐view. The range of theoretical choices, objectives, publics, pedagogical methods and institutional context should be approached through the lenses of multiple teaching models and learning processes, which can be structured around a general framework.

Research limitations/implications

The framework allows for the combination of both the concept of teaching models and learning process in a general theory‐driven framework and their applicability to specific entrepreneurship education situations.

Practical implications

The authors' contribution sheds a new light, both on the design and on the implementation of entrepreneurship teaching programs. An explicit conceptual framework should help the effective and systematic design, management and evaluation of new or existing programs, along all the relevant dimensions.


The authors propose a conceptual framework, a canonic teaching model, in entrepreneurship education.



Fayolle, A. and Gailly, B. (2008), "From craft to science: Teaching models and learning processes in entrepreneurship education", Journal of European Industrial Training, Vol. 32 No. 7, pp. 569-593.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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