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Learning In Action! (Lia): A Problem Based Learning Experience For Developing The Entrepreneurial Spirit

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2007 Annual Conference & Exposition


Honolulu, Hawaii

Publication Date

June 24, 2007

Start Date

June 24, 2007

End Date

June 27, 2007



Conference Session

Entrepreneurial Leadership and Non-traditional Ways to Engage Students in Entrepreneurship and Innovation

Tagged Division

Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation

Page Count


Page Numbers

12.1010.1 - 12.1010.25



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Paper Authors


Wilburn Clouse Vanderbilt University

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R. Wilburn Clouse is Assocoate Professor at Vanderbilt University with interest in creativity and entrepreneurship education. His work is centered on the development of learning environments that cut across disciplines and universities.

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Learning in Action! (LIA): A Problem Based Learning Experience for Developing the Entrepreneurial Spirit

R. Wilburn Clouse, Vanderbilt University Joseph Aniello, Francis Marion University Abstract

We have developed a series of experiences that teach students to expand their thinking to be out side of “right or wrong answers” and linear thinking. We want students to learn to deal with chaos, uncertainty and to see new opportunities that come from a changing world. But yet, most of our formal educational systems teach students how to work and live in a stable and structured organizational world. Most curricular teaches structure, order, linear thinking and certainty, while the world is filled with chaos, ambiguity and uncertainty. Thus we have developed a learning environment to include new idea development, creativity, humor and entrepreneurship as a way of thinking about life in the 21 century. Our work is divided into 4 different Action Groups and is designed to be cross disciplines and across different learning environments.

In this paper, the Learning in Action! pedagogy will be discussed and learning experiences will be outlined in details. Reactions to 11 University and 4 Public School learning experiences will be discussed and selected final projects will be shown. For example, we will demonstration how the Santa Fe case can be used to redevelop a small down town area where the “big box stores” and interstates have created ghost towns and we will investigate other engineering cases relate to power sources and home land security systems.

Our process is designed to be a creative force to help students see new and different ventures in life and to help the US regain world recognition and redevelop a value system of business ethics and respect for life and the world environment. The guiding questions will be centered on the following questions: 1. Can Entrepreneurship thinking be infused into on-going courses? 2. Can authentic cases be developed that will encourage creative and entrepreneurial thinking? 3. Can several schools from different backgrounds work together to develop a creative learning environment? 4. Will the current learning pedagogy used in colleges and public schools produce the next way of entrepreneurial thinkers? 5. What changes in world events (political, environmental, technological, and social) are likely to occur that will affect worldwide business?


We live in a changing world. The rate of change has greatly accelerated since 9-11. Chaos and uncertainty are now a part of our everyday life. At this writing we are in war in two places in the Middle East with no end in sight. We never know when the next terrorist will attack or when the next major world event will occur that will change our lives forever. But yet, our learning systems continue to be essentially unchanged. In our rapidly changing world we need to understand and know how to live in an uncertain world. These concerns lead us to develop the Learning in Action! pedagogy.

Clouse, W. (2007, June), Learning In Action! (Lia): A Problem Based Learning Experience For Developing The Entrepreneurial Spirit Paper presented at 2007 Annual Conference & Exposition, Honolulu, Hawaii. 10.18260/1-2--1916

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