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Chapter 15: Assessing the Impact of Entrepreneurship Education: A Methodology and Three Experiments from French Engineering Schools
15 Assessing the impact of entrepreneurship education: a methodology and three experiments from French engineering schools Alain Fayolle* and Benoît Gailly Introduction Entrepreneurship has become an important economic and social phenomenon as well as a popular research subject. Throughout the world, student interest in entrepreneurship as a career choice is growing (Brenner et al., 1991; Hart and Harrison, 1992; Fleming, 1994; Kolvereid, 1996a), while interest in traditional professional employment in big business is gradually declining (Kolvereid, 1996b). Entrepreneurship has also become both an academic and a teaching field, considering the rapidly increasing number of universities worldwide that offer entrepreneurship programs and courses. However, some pedagogical and practical challenges remain regarding the design, implementation and evaluation of those programs. In this context, the aim of this research is to contribute to a better understanding of the role of entrepreneurship as a teaching field, in particular in the non-business context. As the number of entrepreneurship education programs (EEPs) grows across universities and other educational institutions, and as public and private resources allocated to those programs become significant, it becomes critical to better understand the impact and the effectiveness of those programs. This is particularly the case in non-business educational environments, where entrepreneurship might not have the same legitimacy as it does within business schools and must therefore compete for resources and/or suitable slots in the programs offered. Our current scientific knowledge regarding the impact of EEPs is so far of little help to teachers and other stakeholders involved. Not much is...
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