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Title: A critical examination of approaches to embedding enterprise and entrepreneurship in higher education curricula : towards a ubiquitous paradigm
Author: Dinning, T.
ISNI:       0000 0004 8501 7396
Awarding Body: Liverpool John Moores University
Current Institution: Liverpool John Moores University
Date of Award: 2019
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This PhD by published works consists of five sole authored papers and this accompanying commentary, which together critically examine approaches to enterprise and entrepreneurship within Higher Education (HE) and articulate the creation and interpretation of new knowledge. Taking a broad perspective of student, academics and employers the commentary outlines two key themes, language associated with enterprise, entrepreneurship, methods, and approaches for integrating enterprise and entrepreneurship into the higher education curriculum. The theme of language can be found across four of the five papers, whilst the theme of methods and approaches is consistent across all five. The works are informed by a number of complementary theoretical perspectives, related to enterprise skills (Gibb, 2002), employability skills (Yorke & Knight, 2006), teaching pedagogic approaches (Gibb & Price 2014) and more recently the EntreComp framework (Bacigalupo et al., 2016) which were used to inform the questionnaires and interview questions across the published work. The originality of the work is demonstrated throughout, and overall the thesis offers five contributions to the research and practice in this field of study. Firstly, the work highlights a mismatch between student and employer perceptions of how skills are applied in the workplace and the resultant issues this causes (paper 2). Secondly, it offers an exploration, through the employer's voice, of a graduate mind-set based on skills, behaviours and attitudes, and offers an original framework that illustrates in visual form the integration of skills and personal qualities expected by employers (paper 3). Thirdly, it proposes an original articulation of entrepreneurship assessment with level of authenticity mapped against ease of implementation (paper 4). Fourthly, the EntreComp framework (Bacigalupo et al., 2016) is explored as a means of supporting curriculum development in relation to enterprise and entrepreneurship (paper 5). Finally two of the studies are set in the sport landscape, which is an under-researched area in this field (Paper 2 and 3). Each paper offers a contribution to the literature, which is specifically detailed in the individual paper overview reviews. This commentary concludes with a review of the significance of the work, which includes original perspectives on how to engage more staff in embedding enterprise and entrepreneurship. This new approach is based on the development of entrepreneurial competencies through authentic and innovative pedagogy, and argues that enterprise and entrepreneurship could be embraced more widely at undergraduate level with no need for radical change in existing practice. The research included in this thesis represents a personal exploration into how to support the development of enterprising graduates, which is fast becoming vital to the workplace (Rae, 2007a). As a sector, HE needs to break down the barriers through this type of evidence-based research and through working with staff and students (potentially by stealth) to develop knowledge, methods and process in relation to enterprise in its widest sense.
Supervisor: Nixon, S. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
Keywords: HF5001 Business ; L Education (General) ; LB2300 Higher Education