ERIC Number: EJ1068904
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Aug
Abstractor: As Provided
Entrepreneurial Failure as a Threshold Concept: The Effects of Student Experiences
Bolinger, Alexander R.; Brown, Kory D.
Journal of Management Education, v39 n4 p452-475 Aug 2015
Some curricular elements are threshold concepts that involve "troublesome knowledge," not because they are difficult for students to comprehend per se, but because they are challenging for students to fully appreciate. In this article, we suggest that entrepreneurial failure is a threshold concept in entrepreneurship courses because students may get so fixated on failure's economic costs that they neither fully appreciate the social and emotional costs nor recognize the potential benefits of failure to entrepreneurs. In a multiphase empirical study, we explore the effects of entrepreneurial experiences on how students categorize and conceptualize entrepreneurial failure. We find that students with entrepreneurial experiences provide more complex, multicategorical descriptions of failure and are more likely to represent the useful aspects of failure in their descriptions. Our findings highlight the role of experiences in facilitating students' understanding of the threshold concept of entrepreneurial failure and suggest that entrepreneurship educators can leverage student experiences to promote more complex representations that account for both the costs and benefits of failure.
Descriptors: Entrepreneurship, Failure, Student Experience, Classification, Concept Formation, Business, Teaching Methods, Pain, Physiology, Cognitive Processes, Hypothesis Testing, Student Attitudes, Undergraduate Students, Questionnaires, Likert Scales, Concept Mapping, Qualitative Research, Statistical Analysis
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
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