The summary of these factors based on expert opinions for different categories are presented in Table 1. As it is shown in the table, drivers and barriers are categorized in six groups, according to different stand points of view: (i) Input-Process (IP) model: inputs, and processes: Based on the Input-Process model, the main inputs and processes were identified, among which the followings were the most important ones: Inputs (driver: interested (potential) students; Barriers: incorrect student selection method, and lack of expert professors), and processes (Driver: more accessible professors; Barriers: inconsistency of courses and Iran's business environment, and weak Curriculum); (ii) Unit of analysis: University and MSRT: At the university level, the followings were the most important factor: drivers: to give recognition to e-learning courses, and reputation of the university; and Barriers: bureaucratic teaching methods, inflexibility in the structure of Ministry of Science, Research, and Technology, and traditional rules; and (iii) Unit of analysis: National and International levels: At the national level, growth of e-learning courses, and novelty and attractiveness of e-learning courses were the most influential drivers, while unfamiliarity of policy makers with entrepreneurship, and slow internet connection speed are the most important barriers. In sum, findings show that a variety of issues affect improving e-learning performance. As mentioned earlier, the most important factors are shown in Table 1.
Jafari moghadam et al 2012 new
International Conference Entrepreneurship education-a priority for the higher education institutions 8-9 October 2012, Bucharest, Romania Challenges of Entrepreneurship E-education: Evidence from a Developing Country DR. SAEED JAFARI MOGHADAM*, ASSISTANT PROFESSOR DR. REZA ZAEFARIAN*, ASSISTANT PROFESSOR AIDIN SALAMZADEH*, PHD CANDIDATE *FACULTY OF ENTREPRENEURSHIP, UNIVERSITY OF TEHRAN
Introduction Higher education systems are facing rapid growth in recent years. This growth has been highlighted by deploying virtual systems as in other aspects of life. According to Yasin et al. , we could classify higher education through three distinct stages over the past 50 years: (i) closed system, (ii) transition system, and (iii) open system. The trends in higher education show the movement of universities toward the third stage and virtual systems have accelerated this movement. In Iran, higher education has more than 80 years of history and more than 3,800,000 students are being accepted in Iranian universities each year. Iran has more than 2 million students that 20% of them are graduate students. Iranian universities are experiencing the second stage of higher education and in some cases are approaching the third stage. Entrepreneurship education has a long history in the world, but it has existed for less than one decade in Iran. UT, as a pioneer university in Iran, launched entrepreneurship programs at master level in its Faculty of Entrepreneurship in 2005.
Statement of Problem Increasing demand for entrepreneurship education in Iran, especially from entrepreneurs, governmental managers and the private sector, who cannot leave their job on one hand and the growth of information technology in higher education in Iran on the other hand, has made the UT offer virtual learning as a new way for delivering entrepreneurship education. Before entrepreneurship, the University suggested two programs for virtual learning which were appreciated by students. This experience has led to applying e-learning technology to entrepreneurship education. However, it is important to determine if e- learning technologies are appropriate for entrepreneurship education. This program attracted many postgraduate students in Iran. The main concern is "what are the challenges of this type of education in the field of entrepreneurship?" The entrepreneurship education in Iran has been accompanied by virtual systems and movements toward the third stage of higher education. Therefore, we are facing serious challenges in realizing virtual programs for entrepreneurship students. The main research aims are to find the drivers and barriers of e-education at the Faculty of Entrepreneurship. This paper also detects the role of different factors in the process of e-education development at the Faculty of Entrepreneurship in a system approach view.
Literature Review Entrepreneurship and business education have emerged in different contexts as a way to develop entrepreneurial cultures to create new ventures and businesses to promote entrepreneurship and to foster entrepreneurial mindsets through education and learning , . Current business education programs are strongly criticized for not being in direct transaction with the changing business environment. One general criticism is that business education has become too task-oriented and does not emphasize on the multi-dimensional complexities of problems . Along with the development and expansion of information technology and communications, E- education has emerged as an example for modern education. Among the advantages of E- education, are the free interaction between the learners and the professor and students among themselves without time and space limitations through synchronous and asynchronous learning networks model . A combination of electronic and classroom education not only saves time and costs compared to the traditional in-class learning but also increases the feasibility of course scheduling and gives attention to learning effectiveness at the same time . Generally speaking, utilization of information technology in education is broadly accepted and considering its advantages, in the future this acceptance will be on the rise. In spite of these advantages, virtual systems have confronted with some barriers and problems, too.
Research Methodology In this research, authors studied the relevant literature of entrepreneurship education program from a systems approach and the most important drivers and barriers of e-education at the Faculty of Entrepreneurship recognized through in-depth interviews with entrepreneurship education experts (Faculty members at the Faculty of Entrepreneurship) and e-learning experts. Finally, we have used a structured questionnaire to rank these enablers and barriers.
Research Design Step (1) identifying critical success factors of entrepreneurship education with the systems approach and identifying inputs, processes and output elements as well as environmental elements, which were done through the literature review; Step (2) identifying the most important drivers and barriers of e- education at the Faculty of Entrepreneurship based on gathered information by: - In-depth interviews with ten faculty members of the E-learning programs at the Faculty of Entrepreneurship, and - Questionnaires have filled out by e-learning students at the master’s level (65 completed questionnaires); Step (3) Identifying the most important drivers and barriers based on in-depth interviews with ten faculty members. These professors have been selected based on their contribution in e-learning system and their performance evaluation by students; Stage (4) Identifying suggestions for improving the e-education program, based on in-depth interviews with ten faculty members
Research Findings: Table 1. Drivers and Barriers for E-learning performance improvement (agreement percentage) Ministry of Science, Research Inputs Proceses University National International and Technology National wide student Holding some classes like … Reputation of the Novelty and attractiveness of Growth of e-learning Support of master courses(45%) (53%) (42%) University (94%) Entrepreneurship (52%) courses (75%) Growth of Diversity in student Motivated student as drivers Flexibility of course To give recognition to e-learning Novelty and attractiveness of entrepreneurship background (62%) between other students (63%) period (52%) courses (72%) e-learning courses (78%) education (52%) Interested (potential) Informal relationship between University Support of e- Ministry of Labor support Development of virtual students (83%) students (52%) learning courses (42%) (42%) systems (42%)Drivers Interested professors Professional forum (52%) e-learning center of Support of Private sector (42%) university (37%) managers (37%) More accessible professors (78%) Unfamiliarity with Non-standard Interviews Novelty of e-learning systems (52%) International competitors course attendance policy (60%) entrepreneurship in private (31%) (63%) sector (48%) Inflexibility in the structure of Unfamiliarity with Too many Candidates Weak Curriculum (75%) Traditional rules (78%) Ministry of Science, Research, and entrepreneurship in public (53%) Technology (83%) sector (32%) Limitations of course Unfamiliarity of policy Lack of Online Restrictions of virtual system to material in native makers with entrepreneurship interviews (37%) development of skills (58%) language (23%) (91%) Unequal opportunity of Low experienced staff lack of e-learning systems in Lack of group debates (32%) interviewees (45%) (37%) public sector (52%) Ambiguous result of Lack of students and professor Bureaucratic teaching Slow internet connection interviews (48%) debates (37%) methods (72%) speed (75%) Low computer skills Limitation of course selection (55%) (45%) Incorrect student Lack of High speed internet (42%) selection method (87%) Lack of expert Availability of data banks Just at professors (83%) University(37%)Barriers Lack of enough staff Low experience of professors in (32%) virtual systems (45%) Lack of effective Inconsistency of courses and Irans assessment center (35%) business environment (83%) Lack of budget (25%)
Suggestions (i) Establishing effective interaction between faculty and its environment (partnership and other stakeholders): This means that there should be appropriate channels between the agents- students, teachers, beneficiaries, etc.- in e-learning process Otherwise, the learning process might lead in just a non- effective version of traditional learning systems. In order to avoid that, the faculty should define its value chain more properly; (ii) Designing and developing new teaching methods appropriate to virtual programs: Virtual programs are inherently different from the traditional learning methods in several ways which are discussed earlier. Therefore, one of the main findings of this research is that the need to developing a new system is crucial for improving the e-learning system. As our findings show, still the agents are more likely to follow the traditional learning systems; (iii) Introduction and promotion of entrepreneurship e-education system at society: One of the most significant gaps in the country is to provide entrepreneurship e-learning services in the country level. At present, the entrepreneurship e-education services are only provided by the Faculty of Entrepreneurship at UT. By introducing these programs in the country, the level of entrepreneurship would grow in a better manner; (iv) Increasing the motivation of potential students to attend in e-education programs: As discussed earlier, there is a need to highlight and develop the entrepreneurship e-education programs in the country. This goal would not be achieved until we increase the motivation of potential students to attend in these programs. Therefore, we should concentrate on two issues simultaneously: the entrepreneurship e- education systems, and potential students; and (v) Designing an effective process of candidates assessment: After fulfilling the above mentioned criteria, we need an effective process for assessing the candidates. Otherwise, the learning process will not be done perfectly. In order to do so, we need new assessment methods and techniques to evaluate the extent to which the knowledge of candidates has improved.
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