ENTREP 3011 - Startup Methodologies

North Terrace Campus - Semester 1 - 2019

Entrepreneurship is an act that occurs under conditions of extreme uncertainty. Despite the uncertainty, entrepreneurs- 'must act when we cannot foresee consequences; we must plan when we cannot know; we must organize when we cannot control' (La Porte, 1975, p. 345). You will explore key methodologies for planning and starting businesses. The course covers concepts of uncertainty and forecasting, the role of trial and error and the scientific method in entrepreneurial planning. You engage in a deep look at alternative methodologies, including the lean startup methodology as well as business plans. If you are considering starting a business in the future, this course is a must! It offers a set of tools that can dramatically alter the likelihood of success, directing your effort towards activities that help build actual businesses rather than useless idle dreaming or ineffective planning approaches. This is not a standard lecture style course. It is an interactive class, using a significant amount of experimentation in the delivery method, and a structure that applies first-hand experience in the methodologies presented.

  • General Course Information
    Course Details
    Course Code ENTREP 3011
    Course Startup Methodologies
    Coordinating Unit Entrepreneurship, Commercialisation & Innov Centre
    Term Semester 1
    Level Undergraduate
    Location/s North Terrace Campus
    Units 3
    Contact Intensive: 36 to 40 hours
    Available for Study Abroad and Exchange Y
    Incompatible ENTREP 3001, TECHCOMM 3001
    Assessment Individual assignments, group project, journal
    Course Staff

    Course Coordinator: Dr Wendy Lindsay

    Program Director Contact Details: Innovation and Entrepreneurship
    Name: Dr Wendy Lindsay
    Email: wendy.lindsay@adelaide.edu.au

    Teaching Staff



    Course Timetable

    The full timetable of all activities for this course can be accessed from Course Planner.

  • Learning Outcomes
    Course Learning Outcomes

    On successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

    1 Explain how to develop a strategic business plan
    2 Develop their own effective strategic business plan
    3 Know how to communicate their business plan effectively to financiers and other stakeholders
    4 Identify the pros and cons of developing a business plan
    University Graduate Attributes

    This course will provide students with an opportunity to develop the Graduate Attribute(s) specified below:

    University Graduate Attribute Course Learning Outcome(s)
    Deep discipline knowledge
    • informed and infused by cutting edge research, scaffolded throughout their program of studies
    • acquired from personal interaction with research active educators, from year 1
    • accredited or validated against national or international standards (for relevant programs)
    Critical thinking and problem solving
    • steeped in research methods and rigor
    • based on empirical evidence and the scientific approach to knowledge development
    • demonstrated through appropriate and relevant assessment
    1, 4
    Teamwork and communication skills
    • developed from, with, and via the SGDE
    • honed through assessment and practice throughout the program of studies
    • encouraged and valued in all aspects of learning
    Career and leadership readiness
    • technology savvy
    • professional and, where relevant, fully accredited
    • forward thinking and well informed
    • tested and validated by work based experiences
    Self-awareness and emotional intelligence
    • a capacity for self-reflection and a willingness to engage in self-appraisal
    • open to objective and constructive feedback from supervisors and peers
    • able to negotiate difficult social situations, defuse conflict and engage positively in purposeful debate
    2, 4
  • Learning Resources
    Required Resources
    No Text book required.

    Students will have access to a comprehensive set of entrepreneurship and business plan readings (and business plan case example):

    Lindsay, Noel, Craig, Justin, and Geronimos, Gail (2009). Business Planning for Entrepreneurs, Module 2, Authors Academic Publishing, Corvallis, USA. (Handout)

    Timmons, Jeffry A. and Spinelli, Stephen Jr. (2009). New Venture Creation: Entrepreneurship for the 21st Century, 8th edition. McGraw-Hill Irwin, Boston. Chapter 3 (Handout)

    Lindsay, Noel (2010). Business Plan Template. (Handout)

    2MBA Business Plan (Handout) Students should read this in advance and be prepared to discuss this business plan in class

    Bell, Gordon and Mason, Heidi, Bell-Mason Diagnostic, Chapter 10. (Handout)

    Lindsay, Noel (2010). Common Financial Ratio Formulae (Handout)

    Recommended Resources
    Though not compulsory, students may wish to have a look at the following entrepreneurship texts:

    Timmons, Jeffry A., Gillin, L. M., Burshtein, S., and Spinelli, Stephen Jr. (2010). New Venture Creation: Entrepreneurship for the 21st Century – A Pacific Rim Perspective, 1st Edition. McGraw-Hill Irwin.

    Hisrich, Robert D., Peters, Michael P., and Shepherd, Dean A. (2010). Entrepreneurship, 8th Edition. McGraw-Hill Irwin, Boston

    Students are also encouraged to review some of the following to supplement their knowledge:

    Business plan books that are widely available

    Entrepreneur/venture capitalist media sites such as Entrepreneur.com, Inc.com, and RedHerring.com

    Scholarly entrepreneurship journals including Journal of Business Venturing, Entrepreneurship Theory and Practice, Journal of Small Business Management, Venture Capital, and Family Business Review where you will find the latest in what is happening in international entrepreneurship research.

    Library Resources
    The University of Adelaide’s Barr Smith Library provides a range of learning resources including texts, journals, periodicals, magazines, and access to online databases and information services. It also offers a virtual library which is accessible via the University’s website. Access to the Library's electronic resources.

    Online Learning
    MyUni is the University of Adelaide's online learning environment. It is used to support traditional face-to-face lectures, tutorials and workshops at the University. MyUni provides access to various features including announcements, course materials, discussion boards and assessments for each online course of study.
  • Learning & Teaching Activities
    Learning & Teaching Modes
    This course is offered in blended learning mode with the face-to-face component offered as intensives.

    The information below is provided as a guide to assist students in engaging appropriately with the course requirements.

    As a guide, a 3 unit course comprises a total of 156 hours work (this includes face-to-face contact, any online components, and self directed study).
    Learning Activities Summary
    Intensive Day Content Readings/Activities
    • Course overview
    • Introductions
    • Review of the entrepreneurial process
    Ch 3 Timmons & Spinelli Handout

    Activity: Short presentation on your strengths (and weaknesses) and how these will be important to the team in developing a business plan
    • Overview of the business plan and the business planning process
    • Critique of a business plan
    • Team formation
    • Discussion of the business idea for this course
    Business Planning for Entrepreneurs (Lindsay, Craig and Geronimos 2009)

    Activity: Critique of the 2MBA business plan
    Activity: Critique of the 2MBA business plan presentation
    Activity: Class forms into teams to discuss project and member responsibilities
    3 The process forward for managing the project Activity: Presentation of A3 business plan critique
    Activity: Development of work plan and work on developing business plan
    4 Financial pro formas Examination Test

    Activity: Students present an overview of their business plan progress and discuss challenges encountered
    Activity: Work on developing plan
    5 Presenting your business plan Activity: Work on developing business plan
    Activity: Poster plan presentation in class
    Activity: Critique the two other reports (individually)
    Activity: Prepare questions for the two other teams (as a team)
    6 Presentations Activity: Oral presentation (each person in the team must present) with other students testing the depth of knowledge of the presenters via asking searching questions
    Small Group Discovery Experience
    This course offers opportunity to work in small teams to creatively identify and analyse a business opportunity.  

    It also requires team critique, whereby, you are asked to analyse and critique the work produced by other student groups.  Refer to assesment criteria for further details.
  • Assessment

    The University's policy on Assessment for Coursework Programs is based on the following four principles:

    1. Assessment must encourage and reinforce learning.
    2. Assessment must enable robust and fair judgements about student performance.
    3. Assessment practices must be fair and equitable to students and give them the opportunity to demonstrate what they have learned.
    4. Assessment must maintain academic standards.

    Assessment Summary

    An overview of the course assessment appears in the following Table. Details appear in the following section:

    #AssessmentLengthWeightingLearning Outcomes
    1 In class Test 1 hour (see below) 25% 1,4
    2 Written Business Plan Three A3 page poster plan,
    4,500 words
    30% 2
    3 Oral Presentation of Business Plan 15 min presentation
    plus 10-15 Q&A
    15% 3
    4 Critique of two business plans 1000 words max 10% 1,2,3,4
    5 Reflective Learning Log 1000 words max 10% 1,2,3,4
    6 Class Participation Throughout course 10% 1,2,3,4
    Total 100%
    Assessment Related Requirements
    Students should attend all classes in order to pass the course. There is considerable experiential learning in workshops during the intensive classes that build your knowledge and thus enable you to be successful in this course.

    Course results are subject to moderation by the ECIC Board of Examiners
    Assessment Detail
    Assessment 1: In class Test
    Weighting: 25%
    Task: On the evening of the first day of the second intensive, students will participate in a test to gauge their knowledge about the course to date. Questions will be answered in the booklet provided.

    Assessment 2: Written Business Plan
    Weighting: 30%
    Task: Based on the business idea that the whole class will use, your team’s task is to develop a business plan using the poster plan template on three A3 sheets of paper. This format has been demonstrated to focus attention on key aspects of the plan, and reflects the needs of organisations to have a high level, yet comprehensive overview, of the key elements of such a plan. Each plan will be critiqued by other students.

    Assessment 3: Oral Presentation of Business Plan
    Weighting: 15%
    Task: Each person in the team will be allocated a section of the report to present by the lecturer. Presentations should be professional and should enthuse. Do not get into undue detail in your presentations.

    Assessment 4: Critique of two other reports
    Weighting: 10%
    Task: Critically review three reports and evaluate them on the following basis:
    What are two strengths of the business plan?
    What are two areas of improvement of the business plan?
    How feasible are the financial details of the business plan?
    If you were an investor, what areas would you require additional information about?

    Assessment 5: Reflective Learning Log
    Weighting: 10%
    Task: Submit a reflective log during this course. The purpose is to reflect upon what you are learning as you develop your business plan with your team: What you have learned, what surprised you, what disappointed you, and any other insights that you gleaned from developing this business plan.

    Assessment 6: Class Participation
    Weighting: 10%
    Task: Participation in the class activities and discussion during the two course intensives.

    Active participation in discussions requires adhering to the following ground rules:
    We will respect confidentiality
    We will share time equitably to ensure the participation of all
    We will keep an open mind and be open to learning
    We will not be disrespectful of others even if we do not share their views
    All text based assignments must be submitted via MyUni.
    Please refer to step by step instructions: MyUni Learning Centre

    There are a few points to note about the submission of assignments:
    • Assignment Submission:  Assignments should not be emailed to the instructor; they must be lodged via the MyUni Course site (unless specified to do both). Note that assignments may be processed via TURNITIN, which is an online plagiarism prevention tool.
    • Cover Sheet:  Please include in the assignment a completed University of Adelaide Assessment Cover Sheet providing details of yourself and your team members (if applicable), your assignment, the course, date submitted, etc. as well as the declaration signed by you that this is your (your team’s) work.  Note that the declaration on any electronically submitted assignment will be deemed to have the same authority as a signed declaration.
    • Backup Copy of Assignments:  You are advised to keep a copy of your assignments in case the submitted copy goes missing.  Please ensure that all assignment pages are numbered. If your assignment contains confidential information, you should discuss any concerns with the Course Lecturer prior to submission.
    • Extensions of Time:  An application for Assessment Extension should be made well before the due date of the assignment to the Course Lecturer.  Normally, extensions will only be granted for a maximum of two weeks from the original assignment submission date.  Extensions will only be granted in cases of genuine medical, compassionate or extenuating circumstances.
    • Failure to submit: Failure to submit an assignment on time or by the agreed extension deadline may result in penalties and may incur a fail grade.  Note that a late penalty of 5% of the total available marks for that assessment item will be incurred each day an assignment is handed in late (Unless otherwise stated in 'Assessment Related Requirements' or 'Assessment Detail' above). Assignments handed in after 14 days from the due submission date will fail even if a 100% mark is granted for the work.

    Resubmission & Remarking

    Resubmission of an assignment for remarking after reworking it to obtain a better mark will not normally be accepted.  Approval for resubmission will only be granted on medical or compassionate grounds.
    Course Grading

    Grades for your performance in this course will be awarded in accordance with the following scheme:

    M10 (Coursework Mark Scheme)
    Grade Mark Description
    FNS   Fail No Submission
    F 1-49 Fail
    P 50-64 Pass
    C 65-74 Credit
    D 75-84 Distinction
    HD 85-100 High Distinction
    CN   Continuing
    NFE   No Formal Examination
    RP   Result Pending

    Further details of the grades/results can be obtained from Examinations.

    Grade Descriptors are available which provide a general guide to the standard of work that is expected at each grade level. More information at Assessment for Coursework Programs.

    Final results for this course will be made available through Access Adelaide.

  • Student Feedback

    The University places a high priority on approaches to learning and teaching that enhance the student experience. Feedback is sought from students in a variety of ways including on-going engagement with staff, the use of online discussion boards and the use of Student Experience of Learning and Teaching (SELT) surveys as well as GOS surveys and Program reviews.

    SELTs are an important source of information to inform individual teaching practice, decisions about teaching duties, and course and program curriculum design. They enable the University to assess how effectively its learning environments and teaching practices facilitate student engagement and learning outcomes. Under the current SELT Policy (http://www.adelaide.edu.au/policies/101/) course SELTs are mandated and must be conducted at the conclusion of each term/semester/trimester for every course offering. Feedback on issues raised through course SELT surveys is made available to enrolled students through various resources (e.g. MyUni). In addition aggregated course SELT data is available.

  • Student Support
  • Policies & Guidelines
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