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Entrepreneur education: does prior experience matter?


The importance of entrepreneurship education on the economic future of a nation has been much lauded by researchers, for example, Cheng et al. (2009), Heinonen and Poikkijoki, (2006) and McKeown et al. (2006). In their research, entrepreneurship education is more than creating a new business venture, but also denotes the understanding of the essence of entrepreneurship such as learning to be innovative, i.e., thinking out of the box, high readiness to change and being able to integrate and synthesize experience, skills and knowledge to create, innovate and evaluate abundant entrepreneurial opportunities they are trained to identify. According to Cheng et al. (2009), entrepreneurship education brings important returns to graduates and also to society in terms of encouraging the society as a whole to be more responsive towards new technology changes. In their research, Heinonen and Poikkijoki (2006) also report that entrepreneurial behaviour is an innovative approach that constitutes a viable platform for economic development in any society.

Given the importance of entrepreneurship education on the economic future, it has sparked a worldwide interest towards building and ingraining these entrepreneurship skills, values and behaviour into the new generation of the citizens especially fresh graduates. Higher learning education is seen as one of the platform to encourage entrepreneurship among the younger generation (McKeown et al., 2006). Hence, this has led to a greater scrutiny on the effectiveness of entrepreneurship education in higher education. Nevertheless, there seems to be some differences of opinion among researchers in terms of whether entrepreneurship can be taught, posing some interesting findings aimed towards education institutions (Dickson et al., 2008; Henry et al., 2005; Kirky, 2004).

Against this backdrop, this research therefore aims to explore whether prior experience (from parents and respondents' self-experience) would have an effect on the outcomes of entrepreneurial courses being taught in universities in terms of entrepreneur values, characteristics and intention.


Development of Entrepreneurship in Malaysia

The importance of entrepreneurship activities is undeniably crucial for the development and sustainability of the economy. It has been acknowledged that entrepreneurship plays an important role in an economy and can lead to economic growth (Fauziah et al., 2004). The economic crisis that hit Malaysia has shown that it is risky to be overly dependent on foreign direct investment (FDI) to stimulate economic growth as there is a high tendency for foreign investors to withdraw their investments and relocate to new destinations that are able to offer lower labour costs (Normah, 2007). Entrepreneurship activities have always been equated to be the activities undertaken by small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and these SMEs play a crucial role towards the development of a nation's economy. In the context of Malaysia, the importance of entrepreneurship towards the of the country's economy can be seen where 99.2% of business establishments are SMEs, employing 5.6 million of the workforce and contributing about 32% of the gross domestic product (SME Corp, 2010). The important role that entrepreneurs play through SMEs in the economic growth of various Asian nations can be shown Table 1.

From the Table 1 above, we can conclude that the SMEs in developed countries such as Japan and China SMEs contribute more than 55% towards their national GDP and more than 70% of the total workforce, demonstrating the crucial role that SMEs play in the development of the countries' economies.

As mentioned above, in the context of Malaysia, the government is deploying supporting mechanisms and formulating policies to assist and support entrepreneurs such as providing funding, physical infrastructure and business advisory services (Mohammad Arriff and Syarisa Yanti, 2003). The National SME Development Council was set up in August 2004 to formulate and implement the direction and strategies for the development of SMEs (Normah, 2007). Key achievements of the Council are shown in Table 2.

Besides that, recent measures have been made by Bank Negara Malaysia to assist SMEs to manage the impact of higher costs. It provides avenues for SMEs to seek assistance and enhance efficiency and productivity via an RM 700 million assistance facility which provides financing at 4% per annum as well as advisory services in managing costs. There is also a RM 500 million SME modernisation facility and tax exemption on machinery and equipment (Bank Negara, 2008). The Malaysian Government has also launched the Entrepreneur Development Fund, the Bumiputera Entrepreneurship Project Fund, the Asia Japan Development Fund, the Credit Guaranteed Corporation Scheme and the Franchise Development Programme (Ramayah and Zainon, 2005).

Entrepreneurship Education

Before going into the definition of entrepreneur education, exploring and understanding its core concept that is entrepreneurship is important. Is it solely a process of setting up a new venture? Or is it a concept referring to a list of behavioural patterns and characteristics that a person should have before being recognised as an entrepreneur?

According to Hisrich et al. (2005) entrepreneurship can be defined as a dynamic process of creating incremental wealth where the wealth is created by individuals who undertake the risks involved in terms of equity, time and career. The authors mentioned that entrepreneurship can also be defined as a process of creating something new with by devoting time, and effort by assuming the financial, psychic and social risks and as a return, receiving the rewards of monetary and personal satisfaction. On the other hand, Bygrave (1989) as cited by Heinonen and Poikkijoki (2006), defined entrepreneurship as "a process of becoming, and the change involved usually takes place in quantum leaps in a holistic process in which existing stability disappears". However, it is generally agreed that entrepreneurship does not necessarily focus only on creation of new firms but also can take place in existing organizations. Hence the word "intrapreneurship" can be defined as entrepreneurship within an existing organisation where the intentions and behaviours of members of the organisation deviate from the routine and customary way of managing business (Heinonen and Poikkijoki, 2006).

Entrepreneurship education on the other hand, refers to a collection of formalised teachings that inform, train and educate learners who are interested in setting up a business or small business development (Berchard and Toulouse, 1998). Entrepreneurship education can be also be defined as skills that can be taught and the characteristics that can be engendered to enable the individual to develop new and innovative plans (Jones and English, 2004 as cited in Mastura and Abdul Rashid, 2008). Cheng et al. (2009) argues that entrepreneurship education has traditionally been narrowly define as education that provides the needed skills to set up a new business and defined entrepreneur education as more than a business management or starting a new business. It is about "learning", learning that integrates experiences, skills and knowledge and the preparedness to start a new venture. Jamieson (1984), as cited by Henry et al. (2005), categorises entrepreneurship education into three categories that are:

a) Education about enterprise--Mainly to create awareness and educating students on the various aspects of setting and running a business from a theoretical perspective.

b) Education for enterprise--More towards preparing aspiring entrepreneurs for a career in self-employment with the objective of encouraging them to set up and run their own business. In this category, the focus is towards teaching students the practical skills needed for small business set-ups and management, and most often geared towards the preparation of a business plan.

c) Education in enterprise--Refers to courses aimed in helping individuals to adopt an enterprising approach. Focuses on management training for established entrepreneurs and is geared towards sustaining growth and future development for the business.

Laukkannen (2000) on the other hand distinguished two areas of entrepreneurship education:

a) Education about entrepreneurship that involves studying the theories on entrepreneurship and views entrepreneurship as a social phenomenon.

b) Education for entrepreneurship that focuses on developing and encouraging the entrepreneur process.

As for Garavan and O'Cinneide (1994), entrepreneurship education can be categorised into four categories namely:

a) Education and training for small business ownership--Provides practical help in making the change from ordinary employment to self-employment. Instructions provided on how to raise finances, legal consideration, choosing premises and so on.

b) Entrepreneurial Education--Focuses on creation of new entities centered on creating a novelty product or service.

c) Continuing Small Business Education--Focuses on enabling people to enhance and update their skills

d) Small Business Awareness Education--Aims at creating and increasing awareness among people to consider entrepreneurship as a career alternative. It is usually suitable for inclusion into secondary school syllabuses and undergraduate programmes.

Entrepreneurship Education in Malaysia

The interest in entrepreneurship education has reached an unprecedented growth in Malaysia due to the emergence of the knowledge based economy (Cheng et al., 2009; Fauziah et al. 2004). In an effort to create more entrepreneurs, the Malaysian government through the collaborations between the Ministry of Entrepreneurship and Corporate Development with public universities has recommended the implementation of compulsory entrepreneurship courses for all public university students (Mastura and Abdul Rashid, 2008). As a result of the strong initiatives from the government to promote an enterprise culture among the school and university graduates, education institutions, especially higher education institutes are entrusted with a new task which is to develop the entrepreneurial talent among young graduates (Fauziah et al., 2004). This serves as a catalyst for entrepreneurship education in higher learning institutions, where almost all universities and higher learning institutions are now offering entrepreneurship courses as core or elective courses or as a major subject. For example, University Science Malaysia (USM) is now offering entrepreneurship as a compulsory subject. The same can be said of Multimedia University (MMU) which has launched its Bachelor of Multimedia (Media Innovation and Entrepreneurship) degree programme with entrepreneurship as a core course. Besides that, MMU also offers Introduction to Cyberpreneneurship as a compulsory subject for all its students (Cheng et al., 2009). Another example can be seen is University of Malaya (UM) which also offers entrepreneurship subject at the Department of Business Strategy and Policy. Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) has made Information Technology and Entrepreneurship a compulsory subject for students enrolled in the Bachelor of Science in Information Technology programme (Cheng et al., 2009; Fauziah et al., 2004).

Currently, the most commonly used method or mode of delivery in teaching entrepreneurship is via lectures where as more interactive methods, such as case studies, invited guest speakers and interaction with successful entrepreneurs are less employed (Cheng et al., 2009). A study done by Ooi (2008) yields significant results on the role of universities in promoting entrepreneurship and students inclination towards entrepreneurship. In his research, Ooi (2008) found that the image of entrepreneurship is positively related to students' inclination towards entrepreneurship. astura and Abdul Rashid (2008) in their research concluded that entrepreneurship education does have an impact on students' inclination towards entrepreneurship where a majority of the students surveyed in their research showed interest to be entrepreneurs themselves. A more recent research conducted by Cheng et al. (2009) showed otherwise. Their research revealed that the level of knowledge and understanding on the meaning and purpose of entrepreneurship education among students in Malaysia is still considerable low and a 40.7% from their samples believed that entrepreneurs are born; hence leading to a belief that entrepreneurship education is a waste of time. They concluded that the level of effectiveness of entrepreneurship education in Malaysia can still be improved by reviewing the current curriculum and having a more appropriate entrepreneurship programme.


This proposed framework is an adaptation from the model of Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) proposed by Ajzen (1991). This theory is originated from the Theory of Reasoned Action (TRA) that explains the relationship between attitudes and behaviour. TRA is further improvised by Ajzen (1991) with an additional factor that predicts behavior; perceived behavioral control (Archer et. al, 2008). For the purpose of this study, we endeavour to examine the influence of affective factors such as education and role model on entrepreneur characteristics based on variables proposed in the Theory of Planned Behaviour via a test of differences on these affective factors.



Data for this study was collected via a self-administered questionnaire survey which was divided into two parts. The first part consisted of 10 sections. Nine of the sections consisted of statements with 7-point Likert scale (1 = strongly agree, 7 = strongly disagree) were used to measure the level of risk taking (3 item), locus of control (3 items), perceived barriers that hinders respondents' perceived support (3 items), attitude (3 items) intention (3 items), need for achievement (4 items), subjective norm (4 items), perceived behavioural control (3 items) and self efficacy (3 items). The last section consisted of three items to measure the intention to be an entrepreneur. The second part of the questionnaire contained questions about the profile of respondents. Besides the normal profile questions such as age and gender, specific questions that are crucial for the purpose of this research, such as respondents' prior experience as an entrepreneur and whether they have undergone any entrepreneurship courses or training, were also asked.

The data was gathered from students of Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM). In this survey, 450 questionnaires were distributed, out of which, 420 questionnaires were usable.

Goodness of Measures

According to Pallant (2007), reliability can be assessed by measuring internal consistency which refers to the degree to which the items that make up the scale are measured in the same underlying attribute. One of the commonly used methods is Cronbach's coefficient alpha.

As shown in Table 3, there are 10 variables used in this study with the number of items for each variables shown. In this current study, all the variables have good internal consistency where all the Cronbach alpha's values exceeded the acceptable level of 0.5.


The profile of respondents is presented in Table 4. The majority of the respondents were females (74.8%). As for ethnicity, the majority of the respondents were Malays followed by Chinese, Indians and others. Most of the respondents have attended at least one entrepreneurship training programme or course. In terms of prior experience as an entrepreneur, only 21% out of the total respondent stated that they have prior experience as an entrepreneur.

Table 5 provides a brief insight into the mean and standard deviations for the variables assessed. All the mean values exceeded the value of 4, except for perceived variable control which recorded a value of 3.81. This revealed that most of the respondents are inclined to take risks and lean more towards the internal locus of control. Respondents are concerned with the barriers that entrepreneur have to overcome. Besides that, respondents also showed they have a high level of perceived support to be an entrepreneur and have the right entrepreneur attitude. In addition, respondents have high need for achievement with high subjective norm to encourage them to pursue a career as an entrepreneur. Respondents too project high self efficacy and most importantly, majority of respondents show a great interest to be entrepreneurs in the future.

This study also examined if there are any differences in entrepreneur characteristics, behaviour and intention of students to be an entrepreneur. Based on Table 6, there seems to be significant differences in terms of risk taking, locus of control, intention, subjective norm, perceived behavioural control and self-efficacy between arts and science students. In terms of risk taking, it seems that respondents from the science streams have higher mean scores compared to arts stream respondents. However, in terms of the need for achievement, subjective norm and self-efficacy, art stream respondents seem to surpass their science stream counterparts in terms of their mean readings. Respondents from the arts stream also seem to have a higher inclination to be entrepreneurs compared to their science streams counterpart. The same has been reported in the research carried out by Ramayah and Zainon (2005) whereby young graduates from Arts streams have a higher mean reading in terms of their intention to be entrepreneurs.

This research also aimed to examine if having a father or a mother in the family who is an entrepreneur would have an effect on the characteristics and intention to be an entrepreneur amongst students in higher learning institution. Table 7 indicates that there is a significant difference between respondents whose fathers are an entrepreneur and respondents whose fathers are not. The significant differences can be observed in terms of the subjective norm and perceived behavioural control where the mean figures for respondents whose fathers are entrepreneurs tend to have higher a mean.

However, as for mother being an entrepreneur in the family, there is significant difference on risk taking, moreover a mother who is an entrepreneur will influence her children to be more daring in taking risk as compared with mums who is not an entrepreneur.

The factor of whether either parent will influence the intention to be an entrepreneur appears to be of little important as there is no significant difference in terms of intention as shown in Table 7.

Table 8 below shows the significance differences detected in entrepreneurial characteristics. One way ANOVA analysis indicated that there are no significant differences among groups based on prior experience and training in terms of perceived support, attitude and the need for achievement whereas the remaining characteristics showed that there are significant differences among the groups. This table also shows that young graduates who have never had any prior entrepreneurial experience and never attended any entrepreneurship courses or training before reported to have higher mean scores in terms of perceived barriers. This might be due to the lack of exposure and knowledge on entrepreneurship that lead them to perceive that it is more difficult to be an entrepreneur as compared with the other three groups shown in Table 8. Another interesting finding was that the researchers would like to highlight through Table 8 is that the means scores showed that young graduates with prior entrepreneurial experience and those who have attended entrepreneurship courses or training tend to have higher mean readings in all entrepreneurial characteristics except for perceived barriers.


Entrepreneurship education does have an impact towards entrepreneur intention and entrepreneur careers. This is confirmed by researchers such as Matlay (2008); Ramayah and Zainon (2005) and Souitaris et al. (2007) to name a few. However, the effectiveness of delivering entrepreneurship education should also be given priority. This relates to the approach of teaching business to students as mentioned in a research study done by Solomon (1989) as cited in Kirby (2004), whereby Solomon reported "Even in USA, the hotbed of entrepreneurship, courses designed to introduce student to the principles of business management have tended to teach students how to become proficient employees instead of successful business persons". The same has been ascertained the research done by Cheng et al. (2009), who found that most entrepreneurship courses (84.4%) are conducted through lectures. This method of delivery would give very little opportunity for students to develop entrepreneurial skills and characteristics as lectures are usually a one-way communication method. A more holistic approached should be used in teaching entrepreneur courses to give students (with or without prior entrepreneur experience) an opportunity to developing their skills, attributes and behaviour of a successful entrepreneur rather than focus solely on teaching students about entrepreneurship (Kirky, 2004).

Besides that, entrepreneur education should not only start at the higher education levels but should be instilled in primary and secondary schools. As shown in Table 8, respondents who already have some entrepreneurial experience and also have undergone an entrepreneurship course seem to have higher mean readings compared with the other two groups. This implies that it would be beneficial for students to be exposed to entrepreneurship at a young age, so that the entrepreneurship education objective would be better achieved if both experience and theory are instilled by the time they graduate from universities. Schools can implement project-based evaluation, rather than that based solely on examination. Results can be based on profit or market awareness of new products and services that students create or improvise. This approach not only exposes them to some of the real life issues like managing a business, but at the same time it would also help to build and develop skills, attitude and behaviour of an entrepreneur, which is the ultimate objective of entrepreneur education. All these skills, attitude and behaviour of entrepreneurs are not only important for potential entrepreneurs, but also for future employees in any organisation.

In addition, governments play a crucial part in promoting entrepreneurial education. Government need to set strong and sound policies which reflects their support for entrepreneurship. For example, to make transformation in the current educational system that embeds entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation in the syllabus. Besides that, the government must also work closely with other stakeholders such as academics, business and Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) community in developing and implementing policies at the national, regional and local levels.


One of the limitations of this research is the sample which was limited to respondents who are students from Universiti Sains Malaysia. Future research in this area should enlarge the population of studies to all undergraduates of higher learning institutions irrespective of whether they are public or private learning institutions. Another future research direction of interest might be to compare and examine whether any significant differences exists between students from public and private higher learning institutions in terms of entrepreneur characteristics.


This research has illustrated how prior entrepreneur experience can actually develop graduates' entrepreneur characteristics. This is important regardless if whether they wish to set up their own business in the near future or not. Entrepreneurship education and exposure should be encouraged at every possible opportunity and should be emphasised as early as possible. Hence, policy makers, academician and parents should make it a point to encourage entrepreneur experience among our younger generation.


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T. Ramayah, Universiti Sains Malaysia

Noor Hazlina Ahmad, Universiti Sains Malaysia

Theresa Ho Char Fei, Universiti Sains Malaysia


T. RAMAYAH has an MBA from Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM). Currently he is an Associate Professor at the School of Management in USM. Apart from teaching, he is an avid researcher, especially in the areas of technology management and adoption in business and education. Thus far, he has published in several journals such as Information Development, Direct Marketing, WSEAS Transactions on Information Science & Applications, International Journal of Learning, The International Journal of Knowledge, Culture and Change Management, Asian Journal of Information Technology (AJIT), International Journal of Services and Technology Management (IJSTM), International Journal of Business Information Systems (IJBIS), Journal of Project Management (JoPM), Management Research News (MRN), International Journal of Information and Operations Management Education (IJIOME), International Journal of Services and Operations Management (IJSOM), Engineering, Construction and Architectural Management (ECAM) and North American Journal of Psychology.. Having his contributions in research acknowledged, he is constantly invited to serve on the editorial boards and program committees of several international journals and conferences of repute. He can be contacted at School of Management, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 11800 Minden, Penang Malaysia. Tel: 604-6533888 ext 3889. E-mail:

NOOR HAZLINA AHMAD, Ph.D. is a senior lecturer at the School of Management USM. She joined the university after completing her PhD at the University of Adelaide, Australia. She is currently a Research Associate of the University of Adelaide Business School and Ngee-Ann Adelaide Education Centre research project that endeavors to investigate the impact of incubators on the development of entrepreneurial competencies among nascent entrepreneurs. Hazlina sits on the editorial board of the Asian Academy of Management Journal and has been appointed as a Research Fellow of the Ministry of Human Resources Malaysia. She is currently involved in a research project with the Higher Education Leadership Academy of Malaysia that looks into developing a model for succession planning and academic leadership in higher education institutions. She has published in several international journals including the International Journal of Entrepreneurial Behaviour and Research, International Journal of Entrepreneurship and Small Business, International Journal of Entrepreneurial Venturing as well the Frontiers of Entrepreneurship Research. Hazlina has also presented her research works at various international conferences including Babson College Entrepreneurship Research Conference, International Council for Small Business (ICSB) World Conference, International AGSE Entrepreneurship & Innovation Research Exchange, as well as the Australia and New Zealand Academy of Management (ANZAM) Conference. Her research interests are in the areas of Organizational Behaviour, Entrepreneurship and SMEs in particular entrepreneurship skills, competencies, and growth. She can be contacted at School of Management, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 11800 Minden, Penang, Malaysia. Tel: 604-6533888 ext. 2894. Email:

THERESA HO CF, is currently pursuing her PhD at School of Management USM. She completed her degree in Business Admin from University Malaya in 2002 and joined Tunku Abdul Rahman College as a full time lecturer in 2003. She then received her Master in Management majoring in Information Technology from Universiti Putra Malaysia in 2005. Her research interests are in the areas of Organizational Behaviour, Entrepreneurship, SMEs and Learning Organization. She can be contacted at School of Management, Universiti Sains Malaysia, 11800 Minden, Penang, Malaysia. Tel: 604-6533888 ext. 2531 Email:
Table 1: International SME Development and Growth

Country Measures used in the % of total
 definitions of SMEs establishment

Malaysia (2005) Employment and sales 99.2
Japan (2004) Employment and assets 99.7
Chinese Taipei (2004) Employment, sales capital 98.0
Korea (2003) Employment and assets 99.8
Thailand (2002) Employment and fixed assets 99.6
Singapore (2004) Employment and fixed assets 45.0
Germany (2003) Employment and sales 99.7
China (2004) Employment, sales and assets 99.0
Philippines (2003) Employment and assets 99.6

 % of SME
Country % of total contribution
 workforce to GDP

Malaysia (2005) 56.4 32.0
Japan (2004) 71.0 55.3
Chinese Taipei (2004) 76.9 40.0
Korea (2003) 86.5 49.4
Thailand (2002) 69.0 38.9
Singapore (2004) 45.0 25.0
Germany (2003) 79.0 49.0
China (2004) 75.0 56.0
Philippines (2003) 70.0 32.0

Source: SME Annual Report 2008

Table 2: Key achievements of the National SME Development Council

Access to Financing

Establishment of SME Bank
New Trade Financing Products for SMEs
RM300 million Venture Capital Funds for Agriculture Sector
RM1 billion Special Fund for Overseas Project Financing
Sustainable Microfinancing Framework
Transformation of Credit Guarantee Corporation
Strengthening of Bank Pertanian Malaysia
Additional allocation of RM2.5 billion for Fund for Small and Medium
 Industries 2 and New Entrepreneurs Fund 2

Capacity Building

Formation of the SME Marketing Committee
Agro-based Industry Development Programme
Financial advisory services by Bank Negara Malaysia, SME Bank, EXIM
 Bank and commercial banks
Business advisory services by Ministry of Entrepreneur and Cooperatives
 Development and SMIDEC
Technopreneur Development Programme for microelectronics
Open Source Adoption in office automation and tools for SMEs
Set-up of two Landscape Industrial Village and Exposition centres
Hypermarket Promotional Programmes
Retail Technology Venture Partner Development Programme
SMIDEX 2006 and ASEAN + 3 SME Convention

Information Infrastructure

Publication of SME Annual Report 2005
Launch of SMEinfo Portal
Launch of HRD Training Portal
Launch of Agri-Bazaar Portal
Census on Establishment and Enterprise 2005

Physical Infrastructure
Set-up of Franchise Mediation Centre
Set-up of Agri-Food Business Development Centre
Set-up of Landscape Industry Resource Centre

Source: Bank Negara Malaysia, 2007

Table 3: Reliability coefficients for major
variables in this study

Variable Number Cronbach
 of item alpha

Risk Taking 3 0.824
Locus of control 3 0.647
Perceived Barriers 3 0.576
Perceived Support 3 0.709
Attitude 3 0.773
Intention 3 0.899
Need of Achievement 4 0.887
Subjective Norm 4 0.873
Perceived Behavioural 3 0.842
Self-Efficacy 3 0.895

Table 4: Profile of the respondents

Item Frequency Percentage

Male 106 25.2
Female 314 74.8

Malay 276 65.7
Chinese 20 4.8
Indians 80 19.0
Others 44 10.5

Types of study pursued 412 98.1
Undergraduate 8 1.9

Stream of Study
Arts 260 61.9
Science 160 38.1

Attended any entrepreneur
courses or training
Yes 268 63.8
No 152 36.2

Self employed before
Yes 88 21
No 332 79

Below 2.00 22 5.2
2.00-2.33 52 12.4
2.34-2.67 130 31.0
2.68-3.00 134 31.9
3.01-3.33 56 13.3
3.34-3.67 12 2.9
Above 3.67 4 1.0

Table 5: Descriptive statistics of major variables

Item Variable Mean Standard

1 Risk Taking 4.22 1.36
2 Locus of Control 4.73 1.21
3 Perceived Barriers 4.22 0.81
4 Perceived Support 4.71 0.92
5 Attitude 4.60 1.20
6 Intention 4.22 1.31
7 Need for Achievement 5.24 1.02
8 Subjective Norm 4.08 1.16
9 Perceived Behavioural 3.81 1.17
10 Self- Efficacy 4.16 1.15

* Mean is based on 7 point Likert scale, 1 = not
at all accurate, 7 = very accurate

Table 6: Differences in major variables
by streams of study

Variable Mean t-value

 Arts Science

Risk Taking 4.06 4.47 3.05 *
Locus of Control 4.60 4.93 2.61 *
Perceived Barriers 4.25 4.18 0.90
Perceived Support 4.70 4.72 0.15
Attitude 4.67 4.48 1.56
Intention 4.35 4.01 2.56 *
Need for Achievement 5.26 5.22 0.38
Subjective Norm 4.19 3.90 2.48 *
Perceived Behavioural 3.94 3.61 2.80 *
Self-Efficacy 4.30 3.93 3.22 *

* p < 0.05

Table 7: Differences in the major variables based on
parents influence as entrepreneur

Variable Mean (Father)

 Entrepreneur Non- t-
 entrepreneur value

Risk Taking 4.08 4.32 1.78
Locus of Control 4.79 4.68 0.87
Perceived Barriers 4.24 4.20 0.55
Perceived Support 4.73 4.69 0.36
Attitude 4.69 4.54 1.25
Intention 4.30 4.16 1.03
Need for
 Achievement 5.26 5.23 0.37
Subjective Norm 4.23 3.70 2.30 *
 Control 4.05 3.64 3.55 *
Self- Efficacy 4.24 4.10 1.31

Variable Mean (Mother)

 Entrepreneur Non- t-
 entrepreneur value

Risk Taking 3.97 4.28 1.90 *
Locus of Control 4.54 4.77 1.57
Perceived Barriers 4.13 4.24 1.33
Perceived Support 4.81 4.68 1.20
Attitude 4.66 4.59 0.51
Intention 4.45 4.16 1.84
Need for
 Achievement 5.29 5.23 0.43
Subjective Norm 4.24 4.04 1.46
 Control 4.22 3.71 3.65
Self- Efficacy 4.30 4.13 1.22

* p < 0.05

Table 8: Differences in the major variables by prior
entrepreneurial experience and training

 Mean *

Items No prior No prior
 entrepreneurial entrepreneurial
 experience and experience but
 never attended attended
 any entrepreneur entrepreneur
 courses/training courses/training
Risk Taking 4.42a 3.91a
Locus of Control 4.68a 4.63a
Perceived Barrier 4.36b 4.20a
Perceived Support 4.47a 4.84a
Attitude 4.47a 4.66a
Intention 4.01a 4.14a
Need for
 Achievement 5.06a 5.39a
Subjective Norm 3.94a 4.04a
 Control 3.57a 3.77a

Self-Efficacy 3.84a 4.23a

 Mean *

Items Have prior Have prior
 entrepreneurial entrepreneurial
 experience but experience, and
 have not attended attended
 any entrepreneur entrepreneur
 course/training courses/training

Risk Taking 3.79b 4.81c
Locus of Control 4.23a 5.21b
Perceived Barrier 3.88a 4.11a
Perceived Support 4.52a 4.82a
Attitude 4.35a 4.74a
Intention 4.12a 4.84b
Need for
 Achievement 4.97a 5.24a
Subjective Norm 3.98a 4.44b
 Control 3.33a 4.48b

Self-Efficacy 3.37b 4.76c

* Means with the same superscripts are not significantly
different; means with different superscripts are
significantly different at p < 0.05
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Author:Ramayah, T.; Ahmad, Noor Hazlina; Fei, Theresa Ho Char
Publication:Journal of Entrepreneurship Education
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 1, 2012
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