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Promoting Entreprenuerially Minded Learning through Online Discussions

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2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Columbus, Ohio

Publication Date

June 24, 2017

Start Date

June 24, 2017

End Date

June 28, 2017

Conference Session

Entrepreneurship and Innovation Beyond the Classroom

Tagged Division

Entrepreneurship & Engineering Innovation

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Paper Authors


Lisa Bosman Marquette University

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Dr. Lisa Bosman holds a PhD in Industrial Engineering from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. Her research interests include solar energy performance modeling, entrepreneurial minded learning, and STEM education.

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Brooke K. Mayer Marquette University


Patrick McNamara Marquette University

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Dr. McNamara is beginning his 4th year as an assistant professor at Marquette University. His research group focuses on understanding how consumer product chemicals impact microbes and antibiotic resistance in treatment plants. Additionally his group researches non-traditional treatment processes to remove these chemicals from water. Prior to Marquette, Dr. McNamara earned his PhD in Civil Engineering from the University of Minnesota in 2012 and his MS in Environmental Engineering from the University of Texas in 2008. In 2006 he earned a BS in Civil Engineering from Marquette University. More information on his research group can be found at:

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The purpose of this research is to demonstrate the effectiveness of incorporating the Kern Engineering Entrepreneurial Network (KEEN) framework into the engineering classroom with a focus on online discussions. The KEEN framework was developed to combine the entrepreneurial mindset with engineering education to produce a more valuable, strategically prepared engineer, rather than simply an “obedient engineer”. The KEEN student outcomes that drive the entrepreneurial mindset include Curiosity, Connections, and Creating Value (commonly referred to as the 3 C’s). Online discussions provide many benefits for both face-to-face classrooms and online courses. First, they afford students the necessary time to provide a thought provoking response and to consider other potential research or recent news media to support their responses. Second, they provide students the opportunity to read and gain insight from other students’ posts. Finally, they give instructors the chance to provide immediate student feedback and ask further questions to dig deeper into the subject at hand. The data analysis included three main phases, including rating the discussion prompts for entrepreneurial mindset embeddedness (level of focus on the 3 C’s), assessing the quality of each discussion session, and employing a rank order correlation analysis to evaluate the impact of entrepreneurial mindset embeddedness on the quality of each discussion session. The results provide quantitative evidence that incorporating the entrepreneurial mindset into the engineering classroom through online discussions does increase student engagement and improve skills related to the entrepreneurial mindset. This research suggests that incorporating the KEEN 3 C’s through online discussions, either through an online class or face-to-face class, will result in more entrepreneurially minded engineers.

Bosman, L., & Mayer, B. K., & McNamara, P. (2017, June), Promoting Entreprenuerially Minded Learning through Online Discussions Paper presented at 2017 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Columbus, Ohio. 10.18260/1-2--28773

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