June 23, 2014

Coverage from the Globe and Mail about this course

Within universities students with entrepreneurial aspirations often face two challenges. First, while they may have an idea for a new business, they are unclear about the process for how to take an idea and turn it into a reality. Second, in order to successfully execute on their ideas, they often require team members with a broad set of skills and expertise, and most academic institutions are setup in such a way as to make such a team impossible to find and form. This course solves both of these issues.

Entrepreneurship 101 is an interdisciplinary (i.e., cross-faculty) course for students interested in developing an idea for a new product or service into a market reality and an investable story. This course is about developing the analytical and conceptual skills required to assess the potential for a new venture. The assessment process involves identifying, evaluating and determining whether or not to pursue a particular venture.

Working on a team composed of students from across different faculties, students will generate an idea, use business modeling techniques to “flesh out” that idea and define a venture opportunity, move through the customer research and development process in order to assess how to improve their new venture concept, and “pitch” their idea. Topics covered in this course will include: idea generation, business-model development, market definition, customer discovery, competitive analysis, and resource development.

The course will also provide students with the opportunity to learn from many of Edmonton’s most profound and engaging leaders in the area of entrepreneurship. Serial entrepreneurs, angel investors, and industry leaders will deliver guest lectures, while also helping the students to develop their business ideas and improve their customer traction.

Learning Objectives

  • Learn to identify, develop and evaluate potential venture opportunities.
  • Acquire skills for researching and analyzing key industry, market, competitor and customer information, gathering data from both primary and secondary sources.
  • Develop analytical and critical thinking skills through the process of completing an opportunity assessment for launching a new product or service.
  • Acquire customer research and customer development skills to achieve initial market traction
  • Learn how to make a compelling case to prove that your concept is a viable venture opportunity, through a written analysis and oral presentation before a panel of judges.

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