Rengiah, P 2013, 'Effectiveness of entrepreneurship education in developing entrepreneurial intentions among Malaysian university students', DBA thesis, Southern Cross University, Lismore, NSW.
Copyright P Rengiah 2013
Malaysia being a developing nation has a high rate of unemployment among the young graduates emerging from the universities. This issue has triggered the Malaysian government’s efforts to transform the country into a knowledge-based economy, where ‘entrepreneur’ was defined as one of the key elements. One of the challenges faced by the government is how to change the minds of students to venture into business than seeking jobs.
This study examines the effectiveness of entrepreneurship education in developing entrepreneurial intentions among the Malaysian university students. The probing into the literature of concepts and conceptualisations of the theories permitted a theoretical framework that identified the research issues and the research gap.
The research design was based on a hypothetical framework, the independent variable of entrepreneurship education, including entrepreneurship curricula, teaching methodologies and universities roles in promoting entrepreneurship, to test the dependent variable of entrepreneurial intentions. Attitude and stakeholder support system factors acted as mediating variables. This led to the development of three research issues as follows:
Research Issue 1: What are the educational factors that determine entrepreneurial intentions among Malaysian university students?
Research Issue 2: What are the attitude factors determine entrepreneurial intentions among Malaysian university students?
Research Issue 3: What are the stakeholder support system factors determine entrepreneurial intentions among Malaysian university students?
Five hypotheses were developed namely; entrepreneurship curricula, teaching methodologies, universities roles, and attitude and stakeholder support system factors to test the entrepreneurial intentions of the Malaysian university students. The quantitative methodology included a stratified sample from the final year students studying entrepreneurship as a subject from four entrepreneurial-focused universities.
A preliminary survey questionnaire was developed and pre-tested with two Malaysian universities to validate the variables and to ascertain that the questionnaire was in accordance with the required responses. Final questionnaires were distributed to students in the four universities through face to face and drop off and pick up method. The response rate was 396 (66%) usable questionnaires for subsequent data analysis.
The data collected was analysed through SPSS version 14.0 and Structural Equation Modelling techniques using AMOS version 16.0. Descriptive statistics was used for demographic characteristics and confirmatory factor analysis through AMOS 16.0, to test the goodness-fit-of the model and the hypotheses developed for the study. The proposed model was modified which contributed to the theory and the development of new variables of ‘attitude towards goals’ and ‘family roles’ in the study. Three of the hypotheses H3, H4 and H5 were accepted, H2 was rejected and H1 was partially accepted.
The findings of this research extended to the body of knowledge on entrepreneurship education in the Malaysian universities. It also proposed recommendations and suggestions for further research in exploring entrepreneurship education and entrepreneurial intentions as necessary and appropriate.