MM302-Entrepreneurial Project

Module Provider: Leadership, Organisations and Behaviour
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Level:6
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring term module
Pre-requisites:
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Co-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2022/3

Module Convenor: Mr Keith Heron
Email: keith.heron@henley.reading.ac.uk

Type of module:

Summary module description:

New venture start-up involves more than generating a creative idea…it involves starting-up or taking action.  



In this module we expect a student to have done something to test out their start-up hypothesis, in order to build their own and potential investor confidence, prior to venture launch. 



This module will NOT require a Business Plan but it will require students to design ‘test and learn’ cycles of their Value Proposition thinking as an integral part of their progress towards start-up.


Aims:

"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 provide the knowledge, encouragement, and support for students to:



 



• discover an opportunity for a business idea and generate their creative idea- this is the CUSTOMER’S PROBLEM to be solved



• develop an idea stated as a ‘value proposition’ to solve that customer problem 



• take some ‘risk’ in testing out their value proposition hypothesis in small groups of fellow students (Task 1) and with all the cohort order in order to receive feedback and reactions in a crowdfund test (Task 2)



• Learn from crowdfund feedback to enhance the value proposition hypothesis and design a new customer engagement test (Task 3).



 



The module aims to simulate the experience of entrepreneurs in start-up incubators who receive support from fellow start-ups alongside more formal coaching and mentoring. 



 



LIMITATIONS:



The limitations of this module are that we are not permitting you to develop a new App. In real life the time for developing an App is extensive as it requires many cycles of ‘build-test-learn’ before it is effective, and the budget required is beyond the reach of almost every start up.



Instead, you are encouraged to be ‘entrepreneurially alert (Kirzner) and focus on identifying existing technology (including digital technologies) that can be adapted and combined into innovative combinations of existing technology/product/service. 



 



These are brought to life by you the ‘human middleware’ to provide new value to customers.



The term is from the MC reflecting how. 



 



In this module we are challenging you to be the ‘human middleware’ in the way new software connects to important legacy software inside organisations through special software called ‘middleware’. 



You need to be adaptive rather than inventive.


Assessable learning outcomes:

Theoretical Knowledge: 



By the end of the module students should: 

 

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 what is a Value Proposition, with its component parts 

 

Application of Theory: 

By the end of the module students should: 

 

Have demonstrated the application of theory which is used to form the idea and its purpose for an intended customer into a testable Value Proposition  

Have analysed and understood the results of the testing 

Have demonstrated an understanding of the feasibility factors that support 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 



Personal development: 



By the end of the module students should: 



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



International Awareness: 

By the end of the module students should: 

 

Have interacted with students of different nationalities and exchanged and learned from cultural and market intelligence. 



 


Additional outcomes:

Enhanced personal confidence and competence for ‘start-up’ 



Organisation, competence and confidence in presenting to a large classroom cohort  



Demonstrated Enhanced reflection capabilities (which is essential for students wishing to progress to Masters (Level 7)  


Outline content:

Entrepreneurs and Entrepreneurship, sources of opportunity, personal alertness, creativity and idea generation, risk taking, hypothesis testing, marketing, selling, team building and team dynamics, business model analysis, crowdfunding as a source of customer interest.? 


Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

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

 

The Autumn classes provide the theoretical information and resources to help in the discovery of the problem/opportunity and the incubation of your initial idea to solve the problem with a ‘value proposition’, which is to be presented in Task 1 as your individual business hypotheses- or version 1 Value Proposition. 





Subsequently in Spring, students are required to be proactive in risking their personal credibility by presenting their VP hypothesis, in order to receive feedback and reactions from fellow 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 lecturer/module convenor. 


Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 10 12
Seminars 1 1
Practicals classes and workshops 6
Guided independent study:      
    Wider reading (independent) 49 30
    Wider reading (directed) 10
    Peer assisted learning 10
    Preparation for presentations 25
    Preparation of practical report 20
    Group study tasks 10
    Essay preparation 10
    Reflection 6
       
Total hours by term 60 140 0
       
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Report 60
Project output other than dissertation 40

Summative assessment- Examinations:

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

 



Entrepreneurs have limited resources and this module aims to replicate the experience of limited resources. 

Please do not try to invent new technology, as that is unrealistic within the scope of this module. 

The purpose of the Task 1 and Task 2 Crowdfund Test is to receive real information that helps each student learn and modify their idea as it progresses to market launch. 

The target for Task 2 is to raise £3000 which will usually be required to fund the pre-launch test. £3000 is the imaginary budget for the design of your Task 3 customer engagement test of the v.3 Value Proposition. 





3 assessment tasks:





Task 1 (0 %). Peer to peer feedback.

It involves the testing of your initial business idea (value proposition.

At this early stage of development, receiving feedback from the tutor and fellow module members helps you gain different perspectives for you to refine this into a Task 2 Crowdfund test.

This is an individual task.





In Class in Spring Week 1.





Task 2 (40 %) is an ‘offline’ crowdfund campaign.

This can be completed in teams of up to 5 people.

Task 2 involves 10% of the marks based upon a ranking from other students’ allocation of funds and 90% from tutor evaluation of the campaign. The VP that you showcase in the crowdfund campaign must be testable in Task 3 within a £3000 budget.



Submission Spring term Week 8 for viewing in small seminar groups in week 9 and 10.





Task 3 (60 %) is a short report. 

You must design a specification hypothesis for your enhance final version of the Value Proposition within an imaginary budget of £3000. You do not actually test the design hypothesis.

This is an individual task.



Submission Spring term Week 11+2 



 


Formative assessment methods:

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

In addition there are self reflection learning opportunities: 



 

1-Reflecting on the words you used in your presentation of Task 1 and your Task 2 report 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 the Undergraduate Guide to Assessment for further information: http://www.reading.ac.uk/internal/exams/student/exa-guideUG.aspx)



The Module Convener will apply the following penalties for work submitted late, in accordance with the University policy. 

•  where the piece of work is submitted up to one calendar week after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for the piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;

•  where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.

The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at: http://www.reading.ac.uk/web/FILES/qualitysupport/penaltiesforlatesubmission.pdf

You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work


Assessment requirements for a pass:
40%

Reassessment arrangements:

By individual submission of a new task, by September of the same year.


Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Specialist equipment or materials - Under £100: For video editing software, but usually a free version can be obtained.


Last updated: 22 September 2022

THE INFORMATION CONTAINED IN THIS MODULE DESCRIPTION DOES NOT FORM ANY PART OF A STUDENT'S CONTRACT.

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