Assessing the Level of Educational Domain Development among Entrepreneurship Students: Inputs for Enhancing the Entrepreneurship Program Teaching Technique

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Assessing the Level of Educational Domain Development among Entrepreneurship Students: Inputs for Enhancing the Entrepreneurship Program Teaching Technique

  • Rowina M. Twaňo
  • 861-874
  • Apr 24, 2024
  • Education

Assessing the Level of Educational Domain Development among Entrepreneurship Students: Inputs for Enhancing the Entrepreneurship Program Teaching Technique

Rowina M. Twaňo

Don Honorio Ventura State University/College of Business Studies, Philippines

DOI: https://doi.org/10.51244/IJRSI.2024.1103058

Received: 04 March 2024; Revised: 17 March 2024; Accepted: 21 March 2024; Published: 24 April 2024

ABSTRACT

Over the past years, higher education institutions have been impelled to create courses and environments in the field of entrepreneurship education as this programs contribute to economic growth in terms of job creation, business survival, and technological change. Entrepreneurial education and training equipped students with the capability to identify business opportunities in the society, build self-confidence, knowledge and skills to act on them. With this, teachers were continuously being challenged to design effective teaching strategies and techniques and plan meaningful activities for the students. This descriptive research aims to investigate the 3rd and 4th year students in a state university enrolled in the Entrepreneurship their assessment on the teaching techniques delivered by teachers teaching in the program and the domains that contribute to entrepreneurship attitude. The students assess the effectiveness of the eleven teaching techniques utilized by the teachers and the four domains of entrepreneurship attitudes. Findings shows that students’ assessment sees students-centred teaching techniques as more effective than teacher-centred teaching techniques. Business incubation, product development and visiting entrepreneurs are the top three teaching techniques that they perceived as effective while lectures, reporting and case analysis ranked the lowest among students assessment. Though the teacher-centred techniques ranks lowest among students, these are the teaching techniques that develop both the behavioral and cognitive attitude of students in entrepreneurship. Products conceptualize in the business incubation and used in the business plan concept, are student-centred teaching techniques which develop both the affective and skill-based educational domain of entrepreneurship.

Keywords:  teaching techniques, teacher-centred, student-centred, behaviour, cognitive

INTRODUCTION

Entrepreneurship is the locomotive that can sprout economic development; it contributes to the establishment of ground-breaking businesses and jobs, to the improvement of new capabilities, skills and it contributes to the economies to be more competitive and inventive [37] & [65]. Entrepreneurship Education on the other hand is a learning process of developing learners’ skills and mindset, which paves the way to transform innovative concepts into entrepreneurial action. It comprises originality, innovation and risk taking, as well as the ability to plan and manage projects in order to achieve objectives. It is not just about teaching students how to run a business in the future, but about encouraging creative thinking and promoting a strong sense of self-worth and empowerment in the classroom set up [22). Studies have shown that there is a positive relationship between entrepreneurship and economic growth in terms of job creation, firm survival, and technological change [36]. This, in turn, has increasingly made entrepreneurship emerged as one of the most popular research domain in academic circles to study on the importance and contributions of entrepreneurship [26] & [16].

Over the past 30 years, universities have been encouraged to foster entrepreneurial activities through different mechanisms, from professionalized technology transfer offices to dedicated policies supporting academic spin-offs [23] & [30]. Higher education institutions have been impelled to create courses and environments in the field of entrepreneurship education [43] & [27] particularly in career perspectives and business opportunities which generate profits [24]. As per [8] in (2006) study suggested that entrepreneurship has disseminated from an industrial sphere to other spheres such as the public, academic, private and the educational. In the academic sphere, a growing number of colleges and universities throughout the world now offer courses and programs in entrepreneurship within their business or engineering programs both at the undergraduate and graduate levels. Entrepreneurship programs are among the fastest growing initiatives in modern colleges and universities [41] & [47].

The issue of the most effective approach to learning enterprise has been one that has raised regular discussion and debate especially on the issue of how to encourage the development of the qualities of enterprises through a teaching program and there in produce capable, skilled and enterprising individuals [28]. The words of Klaus Schwab, the founder and Chairman of the World Economic Forum (2009) help us to understand what is required: “Entrepreneurship is the engine fuelling innovation employment generation and economic growth, the power that education has in developing students skills, that generate an entrepreneurial attitude and in preparing future leaders for solving more complex, interlinked and fast-changing problems” [54].

Studies by [46] and [26] mentions in their findings that for the students to be engaged in the quality of entrepreneurship education; should be exposed to different teaching methods in the delivery of the program. However, the question is which methodsare most effective in teaching and can attract students to run theirbusinesses when they graduate from the program.

The key to a successful entrepreneurship program is to identify the most applicable way to manage the teachable competences and determine the best match between the students’ needs and teaching techniques [42]. Most studies are centered on the point of view of academicians and curriculum developer, and that it is equally important to obtain students perceptions, which is the focal point of this study, students studying and enrolled in the Entrepreneurship program. The study also aims to identify which among the teaching techniques enhances students educational domain in entrepreneurship, the level of effectiveness of educational domain development of students that will serve as a basis to further enhance the teachers teaching techniques in the program.

REVIEW OF LITERATURE

The entrepreneurial learning in developing countries like the Philippines needs to be increasingly driven and responsive to encourage individuals and students alike to venture into entrepreneurship [64]. Educational programs intended to not only bring down the unemployment rate, but also to be adaptable in facing the continuous changing conditions of the social and economic environment of the world. In facing this condition, the higher educational institutions as the institutions that play a role in preparing human resources, should quickly respond to such changes.

  • Entrepreneurship Education

Entrepreneurship education has been defined as a research centered on cognition enabling the educators to investigate the most favorable education process to produce graduates in order to transform them into individuals who have life skills needed in the operation and success of a business [1]. Furthermore, entrepreneurship is also referred to as problem solving process [3]. Others view entrepreneurship as the study of opportunity sources that comprise processes through which opportunities that are learned are analyzed, assessed, and seized for economic purposes. In learning and gaining skillfulness over the entrepreneurial process, the role of proper education cannot be undermined. This elaborate training is what produces entrepreneurship education [15]. Several empirical researches agreed that Entrepreneurial education positively influenced a student’s intention to engage in entrepreneurship [61] and [51]. However, other studies noted that education is not the only factor that could encourage students to pursue entrepreneurship, but entrepreneurship training [6] significantly impact entrepreneurial orientation. Empirical study by [21] expressed that entrepreneurship training is concentrated on developing attitude and business skills. The study by [19] stated that the objectives of entrepreneurship education could be classified into three categories: raising awareness, teaching techniques, tools and how to handle situations and supporting project bearers.

The Philippines, with the Commission on Higher Education implementation of the K-12 program, the country had seen major modifications on its education system. Commission on Higher Education under CMO No. 18 of the Entrepreneurship Program main objective is to provide a variety of curriculum delivery methods that should be employed to effectively provide a learner–centered and outcomes based education, and to help aspiring entrepreneurs to acquire skills, values and attitudes that will increase their chances of success (CHED Memorandum Order No. 18).

Viewed in this context, four questions were raised that needs to be answered: who to teach and who will teach; what to teach; where to teach and how will it be taught. The 2009 World Economic Forum reports entitled “Educating the Next Wave of Entrepreneurs” answered this questions [66]. With this, teachers are nowfaced with the challenge of designing effective teaching strategies and plan meaningful activities for these students. Educators have long been researching how to make classroom delivery effective in the 21st century, especially as education had experienced a major disruption brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Teaching Methods in Entrepreneurship

As Ref [4] highlighted the teachers’ roleand skills significantly influencing effective entrepreneurship education. To accomplish this, teachers need to understand and utilize various teaching methods to support and develop entrepreneurial skills of students. As Ref [46] have classified the various teaching methods into following categories: case study, group discussion, individual presentation, report, group project, formal lectures, guest speakers, action learning, seminar, web-based learning and video recorded. These teaching methods were the key areas on methods of delivery on instruction that were identified in the World Economic Forum on Entrepreneurship Education in 2009.

As Ref [48] stated that most authors in teaching techniques have categorized the delivery of teachers into two learning method, “teacher–centered teaching (TCT)” and “learner – centered teaching (LCT)”.

Teacher-centered approach, which is generally agreed as “passive method”, relied on the behaviorist theory which was based on the idea that behavior changes are caused by external stimuli [26]. This theory states that students as learners are inactive and it is solely the teacher who is in charge of learning, subject content are decided and learning tasks are structured, delivered by the teacher thru lectures and discussion, thus, collaboration and students participation is not visible in the classroom. As Ref [20]  asserts that this method is mostly adopted by theteachers mainly it requires less cash outlay and also very easy for discharging responsibilities by the teacher. Empirical researchers generally agreed that this method is less responsive to activating the required attributes for entrepreneurial activities, such that students were only equipped and prepared to go and search for jobs rather than creating employment themselves [4].

In the student–centered approach, students are taking an active role in the learning process rather than being passive recipients of information from the teacher, [35]. As Ref [64] and [50] studies had explained the active innovative methods are those that demands the teacher to stimulate entrepreneurial learning and encourage students to uncover their entrepreneurial abilities, skills, knowledge and attitude in themselves.

Students are provided opportunities to learn independently in student-centered learning and they are involved in the activities, materials and content. Student-centeredness is also focus on cooperative learning where students are grouped to work together to accomplish a given task which enriches their student–to–student interaction or peer learning [14], andis said to be more appropriate for nurturing entrepreneurial attributes among participants [4]. As per Ref [31] and [16] concluded that entrepreneurship education demands different experiential learning styles, innovative problem solving, critical thinking and learning by doing to arouse the interest of the students.

Researches confirm in their studies that active approaches to teaching entrepreneurship education like developing business plan, creating innovative product or service, visiting and interviewing entrepreneurs and other activities are appropriate for developing critical thinking and motivation [22].

To date, very limited study are published on educational domains and teaching technique in the Entrepreneurship Program. The outcome of the study could also augment the existing syllabi in the Entrepreneurship Program so that the university, through the college initiatives and the faculty could identify which among the teaching techniques students pinpointed as the most effective in enhancing their entrepreneurial skills.

The study aims to identify which among the teaching techniques enhances their entrepreneurial skills and the level of effectiveness of educational domain of students in the Entrepreneurship program. Specifically, it sought to answer the following questions:

  1. How may the respondents’ profile be described in terms of: 1.1 Age; 1.2 Gender?
  2. How may the respondents’ asses the teaching techniques given in the university?
  3. How may the respondents assess the Entrepreneurship Program through the Educational Domain of entrepreneurship in terms of:3.1 Behavioural; 3.2 Cognitive; 3.3 Affective and3.4 Skill-Based
  4. Based from the findings, what recommendations may be included in the Entrepreneurship Program to enhance teachers teaching techniques?

METHOD

The study is quantitative descriptive in nature, it described and discussed the demographic profile of the respondents, which among the teaching techniques was perceived as important among the students, and their assessment on the educational domains in the entrepreneurship program. The respondents in the study were the 3rd and 4th year college students of Bachelor of Science in Entrepreneurship.Of the one hundred sixty five (165) students enrolled in the program, one hundred forty three or 86.67% answered the questionnaire uploaded via google form. Purposive sampling technique was used in the sample selection, the respondents have been enrolled in the university for the past three to four years, have gained adequate knowledge and skills to assess the educational domains in the program.

Part one of the instrument consisted of the eleven teaching techniques that are currently utilized by the teachers in the Entrepreneurship program, adapted from the delivery of instruction from the World Economic Forum on Entrepreneurship Education in 2009,  and part two consisted of students’ perception on the effectivity of the educational domains in the entrepreneurship program in terms of behavioral, cognitive, affective and skill-based. The instrument was adapted from previous published study by Olawale Fatoki and Olabanji Oni (2014) in Students Perception of the Effectiveness of Entrepreneurship Education at a South African University.

Scales of 1 to 4 was used to measure the importance of teaching techniques where 1 indicates “not important” and 4 indicate “most important”. Part two of the instrument measures the effectivity of educational domain, where 1 indicates “not effective” and 4 indicates “highly effective”.

RESULTS AND DISCUSSION

Table No. 1 shows the demographic distribution of respondents, 16.78% are from 3rd year majority of the respondents, 83.22% are from 4th year college. 31.1% are male and 69.9% are female. The distribution according to gender, notably, is supported by the survey of Asia Pacific Foundation of Canada’s 2018 Survey of Entrepreneurs and MSMEs in the Philippines, that there are more women (58%) enrolled in entrepreneurship program and are involved at the early stage as well in established business (55%). In terms of age, majority or 51.7% are in the age bracket of 22 – 23 years old, 41% are between 20 to 21 while 6.3% are above 23 years old.

Table No. 1: Demographic Profile

Table no. 2 shows the mean and the rank of students’ responses in terms of effectivity on the teaching techniques given by their respective professors. The survey results show that students prefer active teaching methods to entrepreneurship over traditional methods prevalent in management teaching.Lectures, case analysis, individual reporting and reading entrepreneurship materials are teachers – centred teaching. Group discussion, visiting businesses, interviewing entrepreneurs, attending seminars, product development, business incubation and business implementation are students – centred teaching.

Findings shows that students’ perception on the teaching techniques, the business incubation, product development and visiting businesses rank 1st and 2nd respectively. These student-centered teaching-learning methods are direct, interactive, and practical-operational, are the main teaching methods that students preferred the delivery of learning be given.

Business incubation from a layman point of view, are created to help train startup businesses in order for them to survive the modern challenges of business competitive environment towards success [13]. They are distinctive and extremely flexible arrangement of business development processes, products and people, designed to support students learning in a real business environment so they could cultivate and grow new and small businesses, products and innovations through the early stages of development [52].

Product development rank 2nd among students perception in terms of importance. Innovation through product development as one of the teaching techniques exists in the curriculum program as an endeavor to coordinate the students’ gained skills and knowledge, technology and information to produce an innovative product with the business understanding. Students prioritized this teaching technique for the learners’ dynamic and creative activity, which according to the study of [40] is an integral part of the intra or extracurricular activity of students. Visiting business rank 3rd among the teaching techniques. Role models from businesses entrepreneurs who join classes either through a formal plenary talks to small class activity, bring the studies to life. Business implementation rank 4th among the teaching techniques. According to [39], learning to be entrepreneurial is heightened in the schoolroom when the learning focus shifts perpetually between understanding established knowledge to actuality being innovative with knowledge, being agentic and creating value for other stakeholders others such as those in the community where the university is, through actual implementation of entrepreneurial learning. As Ref [67] and [16] stated that this method was used to link up the learning objectives required for entrepreneurship education as it addresses the issues related to a given business product, presence of the market, competitive edge, financial strength and the characteristics of the group engaged to take the required actions in their learning.

Lectures rank 8th among students, shows that students are less into teacher–centered teaching technique. Case studies are usually short articles describing real-world business examples that illustrate a particular problem or principle in detail, it is studying real business problems and individual or group reporting rank 10th in the present study. These are traditional teaching techniques and are less effective in encouraging entrepreneurial mindset among students.It is said that such methods actually make students become dormant participants, they prepare a student to work for an entrepreneur, but not to become one [4].

Table No. 2: Teaching Techniques

Educational Domain of Entrepreneurship in terms of behavioral, were perceived by the students as effective. Behavioral refers to the identifying possibilities and putting good ideas into action. Behaviour is an “intentional, self-determined, self-efficacious, and self-identified behaviour based on society and culture” [36], which according to [34], can drive a learner student or an entrepreneur to take action on the opportunity to start a business. Students consider entrepreneurship as a desirable career option, their perception that they will be owners of their own business is predominant in their behavioral intentions.Teaching techniques in this domain are both teacher and student – centered as this are both passive and action learning behavioral technique [60].Meeting and interviewing entrepreneurs give students ideas for new ventures that could be introduced in the market if they decide to pursue setting up their own business. Lectures, on the other hand,  increases the understanding of what entrepreneurship is about, the most effective way to accomplish the objective is to provide information through public channels such as media, seminars, or lectures [53].

Table No.3: Behavioral Educational Domain of Entrepreneurship

Indicators of Educational Domain in terms of cognitive, which involves knowledge about entrepreneurship and business acumen, are assessed as effective. Students believe that the class is an ideal place to learn about business, a place to think, plan, solve entrepreneurial business problems and learn. The class is the foundation place in being creative, an active imagination, recognizing promising opportunities and develop strategies while at the same time managing cost. These are all what entrepreneurship could develop to students learners, which are all included in classroom activities. Teaching techniques in this domain are teacher-centered, lectures were the main source of entrepreneurship–related information. Teachers, therefore, face considerable challenges, not only in identifying appropriate contents and delivery methods for entrepreneurship education [59], and this could be reflected in the lectures content.

Table No.4: Cognitive Educational Domain of Entrepreneurship

Educational Domain of Entrepreneurship in terms of affective, which involves motivational outcomes such as self–efficacy, goal level, goal commitment and satisfaction for the entrepreneurship program [18]. Cognitive indicators deals with attitudes, emotions, and feelings, were perceived by the students as effective. The learning environment plays an important role in developing “reasonable adventurers” and “knowledge harvesters”; and that learning can take place outside of the classroom too. University facilities, college business incubation room, laboratory and other facilities stimulates a creative learning environment. According to the study by [65], the author had seen that an encouraging  university environment which is supportive to entrepreneurship is a helpful for under graduate students to obtain tangible resources such as financing and know-how, as well as intangible resources such as motivation, self-confidence,  and awareness of regulations. A study on entrepreneurial competencies among business students in a Philippine academy recommends universities to serve as a breeding ground of future entrepreneurs by allocating funding to business-related activities that foster group problem-solving [11].

Effective domain can support students to run their own business and eliminate the fear of failure when they can connect the knowledge gain from lectures into practice.

Table No. 5: Affective Educational Domain of Entrepreneurship

Educational Domain of Entrepreneurship in terms of skill-based were highly effective. Entrepreneurship education experiences through the entrepreneurial subjects designed in the curriculum are intended to teach students about, for, or through entrepreneurship “Learning about entrepreneurship has been described as learning the ‘what’ and ‘how’ of entrepreneurship [50], by presentations of the associated theories and knowledge [39]. Learning for entrepreneurship is preparing students to start a business [49] with technical, practical and teacher-guided instruction [17] and [62]. Learning through or in entrepreneurship is to experience real life ventures [55] to develop skills and competencies in entrepreneurship.”

The curriculum designed in the Entrepreneurship program, has the subjects that has the potential to develop students skills and competencies in entrepreneurship, and to confidently act on opportunities through the business plan preparation. The aggregation of lectures in preparation of business plan are utilized to underpin key points made in lectures, as a basis for use of judgement in decision making, practice in analysis, and use of frames of reference and concepts in developing a business plan. Teaching techniques in this domain are student-centered.

Table No.6: Skill-Based Educational Domain of Entrepreneurship

CONCLUSION

Universities and colleges are the key places in shaping and equipping students with entrepreneurial values, skills, knowledge and competencies, and the seedbeds of entrepreneurial education to teach students the way to think and behave entrepreneurially as a provider of entrepreneurship training programs. Entrepreneurship teachers need to use a variety ofteaching methods and combine theory with practice. Activeteaching methods should be used more often, as it is the method that encourages students to positive learning.

It is imperative that curriculum design through the different teaching techniques be holistic in providing the learners of the necessary competencies to venture into the business world by starting their own business.

Student centered learning enable the students’ learner to have a positive entrepreneurial mindset. Findings shows the top three teaching techniques; the business incubation, product development and visiting businesses. Group discussions, case analysis and individual reporting, which are teacher centered teaching techniques were the lowest among the ranks of students perception on teaching techniques.

University environment such as classroom, incubation facilities, laboratories, learning resources about entrepreneurship (books and online references) stimulates and enhance students’ skills, knowledge and entrepreneurial competencies.Entrepreneurship subjects delivered thru lectures empowered students to learn about the various activities in starting and running a business, business plan preparations, business registration and other entrepreneurial undertakings.

Teacher-centered teaching techniques develops the behavioral and cognitive educational domain while students-centered teaching techniques develops the affective and skill based educational domain in Entrepreneurship.

RECOMMENDATIONS

Findings of the study shows that business incubation supports students in entrepreneurship program in all the activities involved (conceptualization, production of the product prototype, and the cost in the operation) of running a startup business venture towards its survival. It is very important for the university thru the college to established linkages and partnerships with other government agencies (i.e. Department of Trade and Industry) and private institutions that have existing business incubators and programs that could augment students’ necessary knowledge and competencies as regards to the entrepreneurial business setting.

As providers of entrepreneurship education, universities should produce entrepreneurship supportive environment through the program syllabi that could inspire entrepreneurial activity and in turn help learners improve an enterprise culture among university students. It is necessary to develop learning outcomes in the syllabi aligned to students educational domain.

Universities, through the college where the program was offered, should invite successful entrepreneurs in the area that students can relate to. Sessions should be interactive that would spur students the students’ interest and also create in them an encouraging attitude towards entrepreneurship.

Professors handling subjects in the entrepreneurship programs should be continuously sent on training for them to be updated on the changing environment in entrepreneurship and to build and strengthen the teachers confidence, knowledge and capability to cultivate effective entrepreneurship education learning practices that are applicable to today’s students’ future life challenges as an entrepreneur.

Trainings could also encourage professors to be innovative on activities aligned to specific subject area. Activities that are geared towards students centered learning, like critiquing group case presentations, studying successful and unsuccessful entrepreneurs to aid students in writing the business plan; since this are the type of teachings that students perceived to be important in the entrepreneurship program.

Students’ organization of the entrepreneurship program, together with the adviser assigned with the organizations should be pro-active in the needs of the students. Activities should not be limited to seminars/webinars only. The student organization could be the avenue for inviting established entrepreneurs as speakers where there could be a discussion with the students, partners with other businesses of company visits, or possible a short immersion of students in the company itself.

The entrepreneurship curriculum at present consists of practical projects and activities where students acquire knowledge and skill by doing, they develop self-confidence and improve teamwork. However, learning outcomes from the different subjects included in the curriculum should focus not on subjects studied in school, but on programs requiring students to simulate all the steps from starting and running a business venture in a controlled environment, to the financial aspect and probable income derived from the business plan.

Training in a real business set up (On-the Job Training) should be included in the Entrepreneurship Curriculum, as this will allow students to experience first-hand real scenarios, entrepreneurial activities. Contained in the On-the-Job Training could be Business Mentoring from entrepreneurs or experts in the field, on students’ business venture in the controlled environment. Business mentoring should be given a minimum hours on students major subjects.

Future research on the actual number of students venturing in entrepreneurship and starting their own business after graduation should be conducted. A research on the influence of the curriculum on the entrepreneurial skills, competencies and actual performance of students enrolled in the program could also be studied, and the effectiveness of the Entrepreneurship Program on the academic and entrepreneurial competencies of students.

ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

The researcher would like to thank Don Honorio Ventura State University, the College of Business Studies for the support in completing this study and the students in the Entrepreneurship Program as respondents in the study.

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