22 SES 08 A, Assessment and Learning: Diverse Perspectives
In higher education, it has become a core challenge to foster the development of entrepreneurial competences (Fayolle, 2013; Lans, Verstegen, & Mulder, 2011). Students need those entrepreneurial competences to be able to deal with entrepreneurial challenges, with which they increasingly have to deal during their working life. Those who are able to successfully deal with entrepreneurial challenges, are able to identify opportunities and hereby to show innovative behaviour which is asked for by employers. Therefore, especially the entrepreneurial competence opportunity identification receives attention from higher education as being a competence that should be taught.
Opportunity identification is defined in line with Wood and McKinley (2010) as “the ability of individuals to generate and evaluate ideas for new products or services that address a particular pain, solve a particular problem or market need, or create a new market need, and thereby add value’ (adapted from Baggen et al., submitted). The opportunity identification process starts with the generation of opportunity ideas: first, initial ideas thought of by an individual. Subsequently, opportunity identification involves being able to evaluate which opportunities have the most potential to become a successful startup.
However, even now the importance of opportunity identification competence (OIC) is recognized, a scientific standard to assess OIC is still missing. Opportunity identification is measured before with the use of self-assessments and interviews, but the psychometric properties of those instruments are debatable because of recall-biases and retrospection (Corbett, 2007; Grégoire, Shepherd, & Schurer Lambert, 2010). Therefore, several authors argued for the development of performance measures which assess the performance of participants more directly. For that reason, this study elaborates on the development and testing of a performance assessment to investigate the OIC of students in higher education, called the Opportunity Identification Competence Assessment Test (OICAT).
The OICAT consists of two tasks, task 1 is related to opportunity idea generation and task 2 is related to the evaluation of opportunities. To develop and test the OICAT, it is applied among two different student populations. One in the Netherlands at the Wageningen University and one in Portugal at the Lisbon University. In this study, we aim to answer the following research questions:
- To what extent do business idea generation (Task 1) and idea evaluation (Task 2) correlate?
- How do students perform on OICAT task 1 and 2 and to what extent do students from The Netherlands and Portugal differ?
Baggen, Y., Mainert, J., Lans, T., Biemans, H. J. A., Greiff, S., & Mulder, M. (submitted). Linking complex problem solving to opportunity identification competence within the context of innovation. Submitted for Publication. International Journal of Lifelong Education. Baron R. A. & Ensley, M. (2006). Opportunity recognition as the detection of meaningful patterns: evidence of novice and experienced entrepreneurs. Management Science, 52 (9), 1331-1344. Corbett, A. C. (2007). Learning asymmetries and the discovery of entrepreneurial opportunities. Journal of Business Venturing, 22 (1), 97-118. Fayolle, A. (2013). Personal views on the future of entrepreneurship education. Entrepreneurship and regional Development 25 (7/8), 692-701. Grégoire, D. A., Shepherd, D. A., & Schurer Lambert, L. (2010). Measuring opportunity- recognition beliefs: illustrating and validating an experimental approach. Organizational Research Methods, 13 (1), 114-145. Lans, T., Verstegen, J., & Mulder, M. (2011). Analysing, pursuing and networking: towards a validated three-factor framework for entrepreneurial competence for small firm perspective. International Small Business Journal, 29 (6), 695-713. Wood, M. S. & McKinley, W. (2010). The production of entrepreneurial opportunity: a constructivist perspective. Strategic Entrepreneurship Journal, 4, 66-84.
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