A Crowdfunding Curriculum to Enhance Entrepreneurship Education

Project: Research project

Project Details


In a climate of international competition and economic uncertainty, government increasingly depends on higher education to play a pivotal role in preparing students for careers in tech entrepreneurship. Yet educating students about entrepreneurship can be difficult, especially in a rapidly changing entrepreneurial landscape and amid an already-intensive core curriculum in their respective domains. Increasingly, engineering and business programs are offering entrepreneurship courses as electives to students from across campus who are eager to learn the basics. Typically, these classes focus on traditional fundraising approaches, which develop a face-to-face fundraising pitch to a select panel of experts at end of term. Today, however, cutting-edge entrepreneurship technologies have made it possible for instructors to envision teaching entrepreneurship in real world environments, developing pitches with broad appeal to large and diverse audiences of potential funders. Crowdfunding provides a hands-on way for interdisciplinary student teams to learn about entrepreneurship, specifically fundraising and customer development. We propose to develop a self-directed and readily disseminable crowdfunding curriculum to help student teams become better entrepreneurs by learning how to prepare a pitch video for crowdfunding campaigns. A vital competence for crowdfunding is the ability to communicate a new service or product in an online pitch video. Our curriculum will help student teams refine their ability to develop designs and produce pitch videos necessary for crowdfunding campaigns, by providing them with 7 mini lectures and activities. Our approach will be to provide a mediated learning experience that prioritizes individual team discovery. Our work will occur in two stages in the next year: (1) Initial Curriculum, Local Development and Pilot, (2) Distribution across the University and to 17 Partner Universities. We will gauge the efficacy of our curriculum through surveys and evaluation of pitch videos to understand a team’s ability to design and develop effective pitch videos. This work will support an urgent need to prepare students for careers in tech entrepreneurship by helping them to communicate their ideas and solicit resources for implementation through crowdfunding.
Effective start/end date3/1/148/31/15


  • National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance, Inc. (#11159-13)


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