- 17 | 10 | 2018
The 2-year Erasmus+ project opened the doors of social entrepreneurial knowledge to female learners and adults with diverse background in 5 European countries.
The project has involved 8 organizations from 5 European countries – the VUZF University of Finance, Business and Entrepreneurship, the Business Foundation for Education, “D.A.Tsenov” Academy of Economics and the technological company 11235 Ltd from Bulgaria; the Institute of Entrepreneurship Development in Greece, the University of Lodz – Poland, University Titu Maioerescu – Romania and the University of Sheffield, UK. They developed together an innovative massive open online course (MOOC) “Introduction to the Social Entrepreneurship”, especially targeting women, adult learners and students from diverse fields of study, with the aim to improve access and attract more people to entrepreneurship.
The Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) “Introduction to Social Entrepreneurship” comprises 8 modules with overall duration of 75 hours of study (3 ECTS credits).
1. Basics in social economy and entrepreneurship
2. Business Management
3. Legal Framework
4. The Business Model Canvas
5. Social enterprise marketing
7. Business plan writing
8. How to implement social projects and produce social impact
Additionally, the partners collected an E-Book of 50 inspiring practices of female and social entrepreneurship examples from partners’ countries, which promote female entrepreneurship and will serve for role model and case study examples for students.
The gamified learning platform is accessible in English, Bulgarian, Greek, Polish and Romanian on http://platform.open-mind-project.eu/. The game elements, incorporated in the platform, create an engaging and exciting learning experience.
After training of 60 mentors and piloting with 120 students and adult learners, the Open Mind gamified online course officially started in March 2018. Although it aimed to attract at least 600 participant, more than 1100 learners have taken part in it.
The impact assessment report, based on ex-ante and ex-post survey of students, shows very high satisfaction from the course content and game design. Learners estimate highly the support provided by mentors and the open format, allowing them to take the modules in their own pace and preferred order. The self-reported efficacy regarding social entrepreneurship, in terms of idea, knowledge and attitude as a result of the course is also very high. 98% percent of participants consider that the course improved their knowledge of social entrepreneurship and their multidisciplinary/soft skills. As the variety of social entrepreneurship ideas deposited on the learning platform demonstrate, the MOOC has unlocked the creativity of students and has managed to increase their self-esteem and startup intention. At the end of the course, around 60% of the participants declared that they consider creating a startup or a social enterprise in the following 6 months.
The project results and impact have been presented during the final event in Sofia, which took place on 17 October 2018.
The gamified MOOC will continue after the end of the project and will be maintained at least until 2020. The partners already reported nearly 100 new course participants who have enrolled recently as a result of the final events.
Due to its high practical dimension and collaborative cross disciplinary approach, the OPEN MIND course provide benefits for variety of learners. The MOOC is equally relevant for students and graduates (adult learners), regardless of their field of study. It may be offered as an elective for students in variety of fields – Art and Humanities, Medicine, Engineering, Social and Technical Studies, including as a practical introductory course for students in Business studies and Entrepreneurship. The course is also relevant for adult learners, such as unemployed people, adults, trainers and career guidance practitioners, displaced workers, people who need a career change, young scientists interested in social innovations, etc.
As an acknowledgment for the quality implementation of the project, Open Mind was awarded by the Human Resource Development Centre – the Bulgarian national Erasmus+ agency.
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