The development of entrepreneurial potential among higher education students

The development of entrepreneurial potential among higher education students
Document type
Varamäki, Elina; Joensuu, Sanna; Tornikoski, Erno
Date of publication
1 January 2015
Journal of Business Enterprise and Development. Vol. 22; Number 3
Business & management history: including the development of management thought
Business and management
Material type

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The purpose of this paper is to increase the understanding of how entrepreneurial potential is developed among young people. It investigates changes in individuals’ entrepreneurial intentions and the antecedents of intentions, as well as the impact of entrepreneurship education on the changes. The authors apply Ajzen’s Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB). Longitudinal data from 197 HE students, in their first and third year of studies, is examined using path analysis. The authors found that overall the entrepreneurial intentions of HE students decreased over time. Intentions decreased particularly for those with high initial level of intentions, whereas the group with increasing intentions rose from low to neutral level of intentions. Changes in attitudes and perceived behavioural control have a significant positive impact. Versatile entrepreneurship courses have direct effect on changes in attitudes. Changes in attitudes have a dual role, as they influence change in both intentions and perceived behavioral control. The developed model explains 19 percent of the variance among women and 28 percent among men, suggesting gender differences in development of intentions.

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