by Dr. Monika Hudson, University of San Francisco
USF’s Entrepreneurial Management course is classified as the senior capstone class, which means students are asked to “bring to bear all of the material they have been exposed to during their university education as they complete final course projects” (BUS406 Entrepreneurial Management syllabus). The centerpiece of the course is the creation of a comprehensive business feasibility plan for the viable implementation of an original idea.
However, capstone students are also asked to evaluate their current entrepreneurial capacity and develop action plans that will allow them to further develop their new venture abilities as they enter the workforce post-graduation. Towards that end, I wanted to determine if the EMP instrument could provide useful information that these graduating seniors could consider as they both approached and completed their capstone coursework and subsequent job searches.
While all 17 students were excited to complete the initial EMP assessment, only 12 submitted their post-course EMP instrument results. Given the already small number of students involved, it would be difficult to offer any summative analysis based upon the limited data currently available. However, even this small sample provided some interesting results including:
1. The most highly motivated students, as evidenced by in-class participation, also were more likely to complete the pre and post-EMP assessment. The five students who did not submit post-results were also individuals, who missed more classes than others, turned in late assignments, etc. While a statistical analysis has not yet been completed, it would be interesting to see if these individuals provided any indication of this limitation via their pre-course EMP assessments.
2. Those students who completed the pre and post-course EMP were also more likely to demonstrate changes in their independence and action orientation scores. Again, while the statistical significance of these results cannot be evaluated, given small sample size, it would be important to weigh this information in a second run of the instrument with a subsequent sample from this student population.
A variety of other factors should factor into subsequent evaluations including an ethnic comparison of Asian and non-Asian students, a gender comparison of male to female students, etc. With the addition of 30 Fall 2016 students to the evaluative base, we should have a better understanding of how this particular assessment tool can be used within this capstone course.