REI provides academics with best practices in entrepreneurship education.
This is a controversial topic, with little agreement among the academic community. As George Soloman (2007) concluded after conducting an influential series of seven surveys over more than 30 years: “There is little consensus on just what exactly entrepreneurship students should be taught.” The question, “Can entrepreneurship be taught?” continues to arise in the literature (e.g. Henry, et al., 2005; Klein and Bullock, 2006).
Despite the growth in entrepreneurship programs, there remain cries for big changes to the way entrepreneurship education is designed, implemented and assessed (Kuratko, 2005). The faculty at Ryerson have been active in conferences and publishing double-blind peer-review academic journal articles to address this critical issue and these are used in support of the thoughts expressed on this website. As such we draw upon and reference the documents shown at the bottom of this page.
At REI, Entrepreneurship is more fundamental than business skills. It is that spark of humanity that enables individuals to spot opportunities to create value and empower them to take action to bring about that positive change.
Entrepreneurship is foundational to the human spirit – it applies to new startups, intrapreneurship, social innovation, changemaking and personal empowerment.
“Entrepreneurship education encompasses holistic personal growth and transformation that provides students with knowledge, skills, and attitudinal learning outcomes. This empowers students with a philosophy of entrepreneurial thinking, passion and action-orientation that they can apply to their lives, their jobs, their communities, and/or their own new ventures.” [Gedeon (2014)
There are three primary Learning Outcome domains of entrepreneurship education – Knowledge (The Head), Competency/Skills (The Hand) and Attitudes (The Heart).
While some entrepreneurial knowledge may be acquired through traditional teacher-centric, lecture-based pedagogies, developing Skills and Attitudes requires student-centric, experiential-based pedagogies. Learning how to be entrepreneurial is like learning how to play the guitar – you have to play the guitar! But great guitarist have teachers and coaches to learn theory, train their hands, and develop their passion for music.
Transformative Entrepreneurship Projects can involve teams of students starting a new business, creating value within an existing venture (“intrapreneurship”), or empowering others, social innovation and changemaking (“social entrepreneurship”).