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Finnish student teachers’ critical conceptions of entrepreneurship education

Marja-Leena Rönkkö (Department of Teacher Education, Rauma Unit, University of Turku, Rauma, Finland)
Jaana Lepistö (Department of Teacher Education, Rauma Unit, University of Turku, Rauma, Finland)

Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy

ISSN: 1750-6204

Article publication date: 9 March 2015

Abstract

Purpose

The aim of this paper is to reveal and investigate differences in how Finnish student teachers understand entrepreneurship education and how critical they are of it. The research question is: what kind of critical understanding do student teachers reveal in their conception of entrepreneurship education?

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative research approach termed content analysis was used to investigate student teacher’s conceptions. The data were collected from essays written by 257 student teachers at the University of Turku’s, Rauma teacher education department during 2010-2012.

Findings

The conception of entrepreneurship education is, in many ways, related to how much one already knows about entrepreneurship education or how one reacts to it. It seems that most student teachers’ conceptions of entrepreneurship are positive, but even those in favour of it, in principle, do not necessarily want to see entrepreneurship education included in the basic education curriculum. Nevertheless, they think that enterprising pedagogy is useful and that the way of thinking about teaching is inspiring. They also feel that both teacher education and basic education benefit from some kind of entrepreneurship component, but do not take entrepreneurship education for granted. On the basis of this study, it is proposed that teacher education should incorporate more teaching that supports critical thinking in all study modules.

Originality/value

The findings of this study illustrate that there is much more to do in teacher education and its curricula. Teaching situations and learning situations are always social situations and both learners and teachers have a vital role to play.

Keywords

Citation

Rönkkö, M.-L. and Lepistö, J. (2015), "Finnish student teachers’ critical conceptions of entrepreneurship education", Journal of Enterprising Communities: People and Places in the Global Economy, Vol. 9 No. 1, pp. 61-75. https://doi.org/10.1108/JEC-03-2013-0003

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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