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ERIC Number: ED557453
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2014
Pages: 269
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3211-4823-7
Exploring Nascent Entrepreneurial Learning: A Mixed Method Study
Post, Ernie
ProQuest LLC, D.Ed. Dissertation, The Pennsylvania State University
One purpose of this study was to add insight to help Small Business Development Center (SBDC) entrepreneurial educators understand why over 40% of their adult learners discontinue their learning program prematurely. In addition, this study explored how the comprehensive Self-Directed Learning (SDL) model might inform our understanding of attrition amongst nascent entrepreneurial adult learners. This study utilized a sequential, exploratory, mixed method research design, which involved a mixture of qualitative and quantitative inquiry. The sample of students for both the qualitative and quantitative phase of the study included adult learners who had entered the SBDC entrepreneurial learning program and then discontinued the program before completing their learning goals. Using the qualitative data from 10 in-depth interviews that were conducted in May and June 2011, a quantitative survey was developed. A total of 243 SBDC students completed the survey in August, 2011. The principal component analysis asserts an emerging learning model loading 26 variables to form seven components that explained 74% of the variance. The second set of findings found that a majority of the variables produced significantly higher means for the success group of learners when the means were compared to the non-success group of learners (p < 0.05). The qualitative data provided new insight concerning the role of mentors in adult education in formal learning settings, and it reinforced the important role of entrepreneurs' social networks and their emotions. The study ends by considering the implications for practice, theory, and future research. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Adult Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A