MMM123-New Venture Start-Up

Module Provider: Leadership, Organisations and Behaviour
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2018/9

Module Convenor: Dr Marrisa Joseph


Type of module:

Summary module description:

New venture start-up involves more than generating a creative idea…it involves what it says in the title…’starting up’ or taking action. Within the confines of an academic module it is not realistic to expect a student to actually ‘start-up’ a new venture but it is realistic to expect a student to have ‘done something’ to test out their start-up hypothesis, in order to build their own and potential investor confidence.

Gibb (2008) states: Many modules or programmes focus on the outputs before understanding the process involved. For example, "it is perfectly possible for a participant in a programme to be able to construct a business plan (often the planned outcome from a programme), cost a product or service, develop a marketing strategy etc. but yet have no real feeling and insight into the ways that entrepreneurs do things, learn, communicate"…in other words the business plan is not a measure of entrepreneurial capacity…and so this module will not require a Business Plan as an assessment but it will require students to report their ‘progress towards start-up’.


"The success of [a module] can be captured by the extent to which "it enables participants to: behave like an entrepreneur, think like an entrepreneur, feel like an entrepreneur, communicate like an entrepreneur, organise like an entrepreneur and learn like an entrepreneur (Gibb, 2008)."

This module will therefore provide the knowledge, encouragement, and support for students to discover an opportunity, generate their creative idea, package that idea into a ‘value proposition’ and then take some ‘risk’ in testing out their value proposition hypothesis for their start-up venture and receive feedback and reactions from fellow students as well as the tutor. 

Entrepreneurs have limited resources and this module aims to replicate the experience of limited resources. It does not want you to invent new technology, as that is unrealistic within the scope of this module, but to use existing technology/knowledge in a novel way to create a novel idea for your target market

Assessable learning outcomes:


Be able to understand and use concepts in entrepreneurship to describe, discuss and appraise an opportunity

Be able to create the innovative idea matched to the opportunity:

Understand the customer’s essential motivations for valuing your Value Proposition

Have demonstrated an effective testing mechanism for the VP

Have analysed and understood the results of the testing

Have demonstrated an understanding of the package that supports the VP- usually represented within a model known as the Business Model Canvas

Have created and then refined their original idea – modified by reflecting on feedback received- to produce a Value Proposition that they have more confidence in, and which may be launched, post degree

Have acquired (in a portfolio) demonstrable evidence for potential investors and enhanced their employability.

Additional outcomes:

Confidence in taking the risk to ‘start-up’

Demonstrated Enhanced reflection capabilities essential for Masters (Level 7) learning

Outline content:

Entrepreneurs and Entrepreneurship, sources of opportunity, personal alertness, creativity and idea generation, marketing, selling, team building and team dynamics, social capital, and a business model package. 

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

This course is highly interactive and reliant upon personal initiative and action taking. Sessions are not traditional lectures and are comprised of a combination of mini-lectures and interactive group work. 

Autumn term classes provide a theoretical foundation that stimulates the development of your individual business hypotheses- or v.1 Value Proposition.

Spring term requires students to be proactive in risking their personal credibility by presenting their VP hypothesis, in order to receive feedback and reactions from students and tutor and respond to that feedback by enhancing their VP. 

The majority of the learning will be self-guided in response to the particular needs of the chosen project under the guidance and mentoring of your tutor.

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 20
Guided independent study 180
Total hours by term 200.00
Total hours for module 200.00

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Report 60
Oral assessment and presentation 40

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

Assessment 1 (0 marks but is compulsory with marks deducted from Assessment 2 if not completed) involves the testing of ideas (method to be advised) at that stage of development and receiving feedback from the tutor and fellow module members to enable you to refine this into a Assessment 2 crowdfund campaign (offline). Submission Spring Term Week 3

Assessment 2 (40%)is an ‘offline’ crowdfund campaign is for obtaining ‘coins. Submission Spring Term Week 7 -/+ 10% of the word limit is allowed.

Whatever the outcome of the peer voting to award coins, each student idea (not each student) will be given an imaginary £2000 to create an additional start-up test that is reported in Assessment 3.

Assessment 3 (40%) is a report that asks you to reflect upon Assessment 2 and imagine how you will use the imaginary £2000 to create a new start-up test of your enhanced VP. Submission Week 11 -/+ 10% of the word limit is allowed.

Assessment 4 (20%) is a reflective ‘Level 7’ report. Submission Summer Term Week 1

-/+ 10% of the word limit is allowed.

Formative assessment methods:

Tutor and peer observation and comments from informal presentations made in classes.

For example for the class Value Proposition presentations- Task 1 there are 4 forms of formative feedback:

1-Reflecting on the words you used in your presentation of Task 1 and Task 2 and your immediate and delayed responses to those words- this is actually the most important of your feedback. You need to practice your words until your confidence grows and you are authentic in your communication- when under pressure.

2- Reaction from your peers is the second type of feedback which indicates if your Value Proposition was understood. Unless they understand it, they can't support it, or buy it, or invest in it.

3-There is feedback based on the ranking order from the votes of other students.

4- There is feedback from the tutor in the form of summative marks and formative comments.

Penalties for late submission:

Penalties for late submission on this module are in accordance with the University policy. Please refer to page 5 of the Postgraduate Guide to Assessment for further information: 



Assessment requirements for a pass:

Reassessment arrangements:

By individual submission of a new written report.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Reading list: see TALIS reading list in Blackboard

Last updated: 20 April 2018


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