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ERIC Number: ED548477
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014-Jan
Pages: 61
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
A Focus into the Charity "Young Enterprise Northern Ireland" and How Effective Their "Company Programme" Is at Increasing "Life Skills" in Young People
McVeigh, Francis
Online Submission, Master's Thesis, University of Ulster
Purpose - This research project has investigated the "Company Programme" of the charity YE and how effective it is at increasing Life Skills in young people. Data has been obtained using student questionnaires and teacher interviews. Previous studies have been completed on "Life Skills" and "Enterprise Programmes", but not both together. The closest resembling research focuses on the "Company Programme" of YE and students attitude towards starting a business and their enterprise potential (Athayde 2012). Research questions: (1) Would LT agree with the statement "entrepreneurs are born not taught?" and (2) Do secondary schools benefit from their students participation in the Company Programme of YE? Main research question: Does student participation in the Company Programme of YE have an effect on the participants' life skills? Methodology - Students participating in the Company Programme completed a questionnaire early in term 1, before experiencing the Company Programme and a second questionnaire towards the end of term 1, having experienced many aspects of the Company Programme. Contact was made with two neighbouring schools who take part in the Company Programme of Young Enterprise and their Link Teacher took part in a "semi structure interview". A multiple choice questionnaire based on "The 24-item LEQ-H" developed by Neill et al 2003 and his colleagues was the questionnaire employed. The LEQ-H measures eight domains, three items each of life effectiveness. It focuses on measuring the extent to which a person's actions, behaviour, and feelings are effective in managing and succeeding at life, or more specifically, generic life skills. The eight factors are: Time Management, Social Competence, Motivation, Intellectual Flexibility, Task Leadership, Emotional Control, Active Initiative, and Self-Confidence. Participants' responses to each item will be scored using a seven-point likert scale anchored by the end points "False, not like me" (1) and "True, like me" (7). During the research nineteen students participated and two teachers from neighbouring secondary schools. Qualitative data has been analysed and graphed using Microsoft Excel software. Results - Amongst other things, this research has confirmed that the majority of students who participate in the "Company Programme" of YE, develop Life Skills. This research discovered that 84% of participants experienced an increase in "Life Skills" over a twelve week period, as a result of their involvement in the Company Programme of Young Enterprise. "Emotional Control", "self confidence" and "Time Management" had the greatest increase. Out of the eight areas of the LEQ, "Achievement Motivation" was the only aspect to have reduced. Conclusions - The first of the research questions, "entrepreneurs are born--not taught" was analysed from teacher interviews. Both LT's sided with the view that their students were born with "natural traits." However both teachers acknowledged that certain aspects of the Company Programme can be taught. The second of the research questions asked, do secondary schools benefit from their students participating in the Company Programme of YE? While both teachers mentioned the many benefits at student, school and community level, there were drawbacks. "Time", "student commitment" and "workload" were all voiced as genuine concerns. However, both LT's believed that the Company Programme was worth getting involved in and any drawback was overshadowed by the many positive outcomes, as a result of being involved. Findings from this study provide evidence that the Company Programme of YE can impact on students' life effectiveness skills. Although there were "moderate" changes, one must bear in mind this was over a short period of time (twelve weeks). The overall results provide evidence that the Company Programme can have a significant affect on participants. However, whether the benefits received can be sustained long-term is not known. This study reveals promising findings for "Link Teachers" interested in the short-term effects of participation in the Company Programme of the charity Young Enterprise. Recommendations--The researcher recommends that Link Teachers or teachers that are considering becoming involved in an enterprise programme like the "Company Programme", familiarise themselves with the skills their students develop together with the challenges of being involved. As a consequence of the analysis of the semi structured interview with Link Teacher, two additional research questions emerged as themes. These were: (1) Entrepreneurs are born not taught; and (2) The benefits for secondary schools who participate in the "Company Programme". Based on the findings from this research project, the researcher highly recommends that future studies utilise the LEQ instrument to investigate the long-term impacts of participation in the "Company Programme". Additional data (Tables to be included). Five appendices present: (1) "Big Picture of the Curriculum at KS3"; (2) Gordon Brown--"Can you teach entrepreneurship?"; (3) "Teacher Semi-Structure Interview Questions"; (4) "Student Questionnaire--LEQ-H"; and (5) Research Material (Info and Consent form for Teacher and Pupil). A bibliography is included.
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires; Dissertations/Theses - Masters Theses
Education Level: Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom (Northern Ireland)