Online-based entrepreneurship education - Its role and effects: a randomized controlled trial about the effects of an online entrepreneurship...

The purpose of this paper is to analyse the effects of an online-based entrepreneurship programme. A randomised controlled trial has been performed in which 580 randomly selected pupils (aged 14-15) have been randomly assigned to participate in online programmes that focus either on entrepreneurship or on environmental issues. The analysis builds on responses collected before, directly after, and one year after the intervention. The short-term results show that the programme focusing on entrepreneurship had a significantly positive influence on the participants’ entrepreneurial intentions, venture creation self-efficacy, entrepreneurial attitudes and perceived knowledge about entrepreneurship. One year after the intervention, the differences between the groups were smaller, but the pupils in the experiment group still had, relative to the control group, significantly higher perceived entrepreneurial knowledge, and significantly more positive attitudes towards entrepreneurship. The influence which the pupils’ prior experience with entrepreneurship had on the programmes’ effectiveness was limited. This implies that the programme has a significant influence on the participants which goes beyond just increasing their familiarity with the topic. The online programme did not, however, significantly influence the participants’ self-efficacy concerning enterprising competences. An analysis of how the participants perceived that the educational focus in their normal education had changed, with regard to teaching focusing on creativity and value creation, demonstrated that this type of education can be an efficient way to foster enterprising self-efficacy.

Policy implications 
A role model-focused online programme can be used as an efficient complement to teacher-led education in order to influence pupils’ entrepreneurial perceptions. However, in order to foster more general enterprising competences, teacher-led education with a focus on creativity and value-creation is more efficient.
Moberg, S.K., 2021. Online-based entrepreneurship education- its role and effects: A randomised controlled trial about the effects of an online entrepreneurship programme based on role models. Journal of Entrepreneurship Education, 24(2).