Higgins, David and Elliott, Chris (2011) Learning to make sense: What works in Entrepreneurial Education? Journal of European Industrial Training, 35 (4). pp. 345-367. ISSN 0309-0590

Objectives: The article aims to explore the changing influences and relevance of passive and experiential methods of learning within what can be described as a new era of entrepreneurial education. What still largely remains unaddressed in the literature is how are entrepreneur’s best educated and developed in a manner which can have a direct impact on their personal and business development.
Prior Work: The article suggests that learning is action-oriented, and that entrepreneurs are not merely “doers”; they are “practitioners”. An integral part of being a “practitioner” is the use of practice to help move the firm beyond the “adaptive” learning which takes place in naturally occurring non-contrived learning occasions.
Approach: The article is theoretical in its intent and adopts a social constructionist view of knowledge and learning. The research approach is informed by practitioner-based practice and research, education and participation as a process of social learning.
Practical Implications: The article sets out to develop an argument against the traditional ‘passive’ means of business education, by suggesting that entrepreneurs who are exposed to passive learning are spectators rather than active participators.
Originality/Value: The article contributes to our current understanding of entrepreneurial learning by recognising that entrepreneurial learning in the context of higher education takes place beyond the domain of the classroom learning experiences, through experiential and discovery based learning which questions traditional orthodox pedagogies. The article illustrates how knowledge is constructed through a situated practice of knowing, and demonstrates how a practice-based perspective might be useful for the study of entrepreneurial education.

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