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Attitudes of Sports Development and Sports Management undergraduate students towards entrepreneurship: A university perspective towards best practice

Paul Jones (Futures Entrepreneurship Centre, Plymouth University, Plymouth, UK)
Amanda Jones (Faculty of Business and Society, University of South Wales, Treforest, UK)

Education + Training

ISSN: 0040-0912

Article publication date: 4 November 2014

Abstract

Purpose

Given the high unemployment rates being experienced by graduates, the importance of small business start-up has increased significantly, with greater priority being placed upon the development of entrepreneurial skills across the educational sector. However, there is a limited literature considering the student experience and issues involved with supporting non-Business discipline students attaining entrepreneurial competencies. The purpose of this paper is to explore the attitudes and experience of Sports Development and Sports Management students towards entrepreneurship education, highlighting best practice from a pedagogical perspective.

Design/methodology/approach

Over 120 Sports Development and Sports Management students on an undergraduate degree were interviewed over a two year period using a semi-structured research instrument. The focus and content of the questionnaire was developed from prior studies undertaken in the field, measuring the impact and value of entrepreneurship education upon attitudes, knowledge and career choice.

Findings

The results found that Sports Development and Sports Management students were typically enterprising by nature due to their prior experience in coaching and training within their respective sports disciplines. The majority of students indicated that they were attracted to a future entrepreneurial career in a sports-related discipline. This was driven by the potential of an entrepreneurial career option and the limited alternative choices. Sports Development and Sports Management students were characterised by their mature attitudes towards their career development and future inclination regarding an entrepreneurial career choice.

Practical implications

The results will inform the teaching of entrepreneurship education to non-Business discipline specialist students in terms of the effective construction of entrepreneurship curriculum. Best practice in terms of customised subject informed teaching material, guest talks and interactive pedagogical practice are highlighted.

Originality/value

This study will be of interest to entrepreneurship education providers delivering content to non-Business disciplines at all levels and aid them in the construction of their curriculum to provide fit for purpose provision.

Keywords

Citation

Jones, P. and Jones, A. (2014), "Attitudes of Sports Development and Sports Management undergraduate students towards entrepreneurship: A university perspective towards best practice", Education + Training, Vol. 56 No. 8/9, pp. 716-732. https://doi.org/10.1108/ET-06-2014-0060

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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