The cooperation covers a pilot teaching project using FLIGBY online leadership development game on Master of Science Program in Portugal in the field of Science and Technology.
You can read our brief report below and we encourage other future academic partners to contact us with their research proposals to explore how the concept Flow-promoting Leadership and Serious Games with FLIGBY can open new vistas for teaching, training and research.
One of the places for excellence to debate this subject and to encourage the emergence of technological innovative new companies in the classroom. However, this process is not always easy, since the teaching of entrepreneurship requires highly motivated students for the subject, multidisciplinary and complementary skills and very hard working. The traditional process of curricular construction, in which higher institutions only think of the organic structure of each course in an individualized perspective constitutes an obstacle to the promotion of entrepreneurship. Instead, I recommend that entrepreneurship curricular unit should be shared by several courses. Some questions arise, such as: How to teach in large classes? How to articulate the students’ competencies? How to set up working teams? How to evaluate students?
These are questions whose answers have to be thought at a local level and adapted according to the reality of each of the educational institutions. Regardless of these answers, it becomes necessary to motivate students to entrepreneurship. The best way to do this is by using a non-intrusive approach in which students go through real situations and daily challenges that are commonly placed on entrepreneurs. By living these experiences, and by knowing themselves better, it allows the appearance of better-prepared entrepreneurs.
Precisely, at this point, Fligby can be a precious help. Although the game has not been specifically designed for the initial phase of start-ups management, team management and motivation challenges are fundamental to work on several critical aspects of entrepreneurship, such as leadership, initiatives, problem solving and social skills.
A pilot experiment was carried out with 8 students randomly selected from two relatively heterogeneous courses: (i) management and (ii) computer science. Over a period of approximately 2 months, the students played the game and all of them successfully completed the game. The experience of these students in the game was assessed, considering several dimensions such as game size, complexity, benefits and limitations.
The results indicate that the most positive elements of Fligby are realism and immediate feedback. All the considered indicators have a positive average evaluation, but the element with the lowest evaluation was the interactivity. The main benefits include increasing knowledge about management and leadership. In addition, students conclude that the game helps them to try new approaches and helps them to have new attitudes to people. On the other hand, the main reported limitation is the difficulty felt by students in terms of time management, since the participation in this pilot experience decreased their time to focus on the classes.
Endnote: Our developer team and support staff at FLIGBY are happy to assist future partners in developing their courses around this Serious Game or finding ways to integrate it. Also our partner Fernando can be contacted for short consultation about his pilot project process and settings.
Thank you for your contribution, Fernando!
Dr. Zoltan Buzady
Fernando Almeida obtained in 2010 a degree as Doctor of Philosophy in Electrical and Computer Engineering at Faculty of Engineering of University of Porto (FEUP). He has also Master of Science in Innovation and Entrepreneurship and a Bachelors degree of 5 years in Engineering Computer Science and Computation. He has worked for 15 years in several positions as a software engineer and project manager for large organizations and researcher centers like Critical Software, CICA/SEF, INESC TEC and ISR Porto. During that time, he had the possibility to work in partnership with big international organizations and universities in several European projects in the field of information systems and multimedia applications. He is currently a professor at ISPGaya and researcher at FEUP and INESC TEC in the Centre of Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship. His current research topics include innovation management, entrepreneurship, serious games and big data.
Link II: http://orcid.org/0000-0002-6758-4843