In partnership with EEUK, IOEE, ISBE, SFEDI and the QAA, the Advance HE Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Education Framework has been accessible to the sector since November 2019.
The 2019/20 Advance HE collaborative project Embedding Enterprise and Entrepreneurship in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences was based heavily on the framework.
As the project nears completion we asked Stuart Norton, Senior Adviser in Learning and Teaching at Advance HE, what has been the core learning from using the framework in practice?
"Put simply, collaboration. Collaboration is a powerful tool, for example: It allows for a variety of skills and opinions to be embraced. It fosters creativity. It increases learning possibilities. It improves productivity and promotes team work. It enhances stakeholder engagement and, metaphorically, breaks down barriers internally and externally.
"The collaborative project has allowed creativity to flourish, bringing a range of diverse colleagues together from within and across institutions, enabling the development of collaborative and meaningful approaches to influence their practice.
"With nine projects in progress colleagues are working on a range of activities from shaping changes to pedagogies, assessment, teaching and learning practices as well as addressing institutional cultures, processes and practices.
"In an ever-changing world, now more than ever, the ability to embed enterprise and entrepreneurship (as defined by the QAA) is significant in helping students achieve success, whether that is in a job, a career, starting a venture or further study. Enterprise, entrepreneurship, and indeed intrapreneurship, all help enable graduates to create value in the private, public and third sectors, or indeed a combination of the three.”
With the 2020 global health pandemic making graduate job markets more uncertain and competitive than ever, ensuring students have the entrepreneurship and enterprise skills, values, behaviours and attributes to cope in a fast-moving economy will be vital, not only to the future success of graduates, but to support growth in the economy as well.
Emeritus Professor Andy Penaluna a member of the Collaborative Project Steering Group believes the sector needs to ‘consider other perspectives’ when it comes to helping graduates into the job market post-Covid-19 and that this project provides the perfect platform to do this. He said:
“Enterprise and Entrepreneurship have impact on us all, and it is an educational imperative that we support all learners from all disciplines to succeed, especially given the post Covid-19 graduate employment opportunity forecasts.
“In turn, this means that we need to consider the views of a wide range of stakeholders, so as to see other perspectives that we may not have considered and to strive towards consensus whenever possible. The Advance HE Enterprise and Entrepreneurship Framework is an excellent example of where this has been achieved; it provides a road map that clarifies actionable responses and takes on board insights from researchers, practitioners and entrepreneurial people from business.”
Fellow Steering Group member, Pro Vice-Chancellor Business and Entrepreneurship at the University of Suffolk, Professor Gurpreet Jagpal said the project will help produce the ‘business-ready graduates’ who are ‘agile and resilient’ that the economy needs:
“There is a ‘new normal’ for us all to embrace change, to be agile and resilient and within Suffolk Business School embedding enterprise and entrepreneurship in our course portfolio is a priority. Where we already have this, we can see immense benefits for our students, graduates and business community. For the future, the focus on enterprise skills in the curriculum is essential to ensure our graduates are resilient and adaptable to an ever-changing world.
“Already, degree programmes delivered by the Suffolk Business School share that same ethos of being agile and being able to adapt to changing circumstances.
"We want to take this a step further; unifying business and education and the framework provides an opportunity to benchmark our current provision as well as exploring new ways students and graduates can make a positive impact on society.
“It is our ambition that all of the degrees in the Suffolk Business School are co-designed, co-delivered and co-accredited with industry. These three pillars will ensure we are committed to business-ready entrepreneurial graduates, aligning what we do to with what industry wants and needs.”