EUREKA: Social and Humanities (Jul 2021)

Entrepreneurial education and individual entrepreneurial orientation: an experts’ perspective. An empirical Delphi study

  • Daniella Da Silva Teles,
  • Cecile Nieuwenhuizen,
  • Chris Schachtebeck

Journal volume & issue
no. 4
pp. 46 – 56


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Individual entrepreneurial orientation (IEO) has been defined as the ability to psychologically understand the reasons why individuals choose to engage in entrepreneurial activities. However, for individuals to start these much-needed business ventures, they must be oriented to do so upon completion of their studies. Entrepreneurial education (EE) might directly influence whether students decide to pursue an entrepreneurial venture based on the knowledge and skills, which they feel they have accumulated through their studies. A Delphi study was performed to determine how the EE, being received by university students, in the context of Scotland and South Africa, may influence them to choose an entrepreneurial career. The data were obtained from 16 academic experts, eight from South African universities and eight from Scottish universities. The data were analysed using thematic content analysis. IEO has been studied using the five original dimensions, namely, innovativeness, risk-taking, proactiveness, autonomy, and competitive aggressiveness. However, the results reveal that only three of the five IEO dimensions are prevalent when aligning to a student’s entrepreneurial behaviour. The results also reveal that EE should ensure that practical teachings receive more attention than theoretical teachings. This study may assist universities to better prepare their curriculums to include teachings that will improve the IEO of students.