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Working Alongside as Pedagogy

The predominant pedagogy in higher education is classroom- and faculty-centered. The faculty as chief knowledge source informs and directs students in their assignments. Rarely does the faculty member actually do the assignment with the students. Seeking a more student-centered classroom, some faculty, including entrepreneurship educators, have found success by “working alongside.” This technique requires the teachers and learners to perform similar learning exercises together, and often results in a decentralized, team-oriented classroom environment. Working alongside can be anything in which the professor models the behavior and experiences as if they were a student in the course. Examples might include completing a business plan at the same time as students, entering an appropriate venture competition with students, or attending an educational workshop like Startup Weekend with students. Used widely in “writing to learn” pedagogies, the technique has promise for greater application in entrepreneurship and innovation.

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