EntreAssess presented at eMadrid seminar

On 19 January, Rebecca Weicht of our partner Bantani Education presented EntreAssess as part of an eMadrid seminar at the Technical University of Madrid.

She spoke about EntreAssess in the framework of entrepreneurial skills as laid out in the EntreComp framework before lecturers and students.

Find the presentation and a video recording of the talk here.



EntreAssess featured in EntreComp into Action

Great news! The EntreAssess project and its tools is featured in the newly published EntreComp into Action – Get inspired, make it happen: A user guide to the European Entrepreneurship Competence Framework.

Find us as Tool 16 (p.136-137) in the guide.

The EntreComp user guide to help individuals and organisations explore why, when and how they can use EntreComp, the Entrepreneurship Competence Framework published by the European Commission in 2016.


Value creation pedagogy in praxis – learning from a Swedish primary school

Ulrica Skålberg and Lina Gustavsson are primary school teachers in Björlandagården, a municipal primary school in Gothenburg. The school has 420 pupils aged 6 to 12. They tell us how they use the LoopMe social learning media tool in their school.

Tell us about applying the value creation pedagogy and using LoopMe in your school?

Ulrica Skålberg and Lina Gustavsson

Ulrica: We learnt about the value creation pedagogy through an EU-funded project that we took part in. It took us a while to understand what learning through value creation really means, that this way of learning is not a definitive goal in itself, but an ongoing process. A new approach has been developed among us teachers. We moved away from the need to keep an eye on everything to instead focussing on keeping the learning process alive and constantly ask the question “For whom, outside of this class or school, is this knowledge (or skills) valuable today?” and then focus on that. This is the core of value creation pedagogy: pupils do not learn for the teacher, the school or the grade. They also do not learn only for their own personal development. Instead, we focus on using the knowledge in reality outside the classroom, thus creating value for other people.

Lina: Previously we had already reached the goal mentally before we even started working with our pupils. Now there is a completely different interaction where we develop the learning process together. Everyone finds their role and is allowed to be who they want to be. It enables learning based on each pupil’s needs and level. When the pupils learn to use the knowledge outside the school in other contexts and create value for people outside the school, something new happens. Cohesion in the pupil group grows stronger. Another effect that has become clear over time is an increased parental involvement.

Ulrica: The pupils’ value creation gives a great impact on the development inside and outside the school. Our teacher team are becoming more confident in our work developing entrepreneurial competencies among our pupils and are convinced that the value creation learning method is an important way for developing the school and the learning processes.

You are using LoopMe to support the value creation pedagogy. Tell us about how you benefit from the tool?

Ulrica: The best thing with LoopMe is that all pupils get heard. During ongoing work, we can take part in reflections, feelings, learning, analysis, opinions and knowledge by using the pupils to learn what they are experiencing and the process in progress, both in and around learning. Should disagreement or difficulties occur, this will be ventilated directly in the tool and we as teachers will then be able to coach and support where it is necessary. We can also highlight important discussion areas and topics that we may not have planned from the beginning, but as pupils express their needs around.

Lina: In large groups and messy classroom environments, not everyone is heard. Not everybody dares to speak up. Equally, time is a factor: some pupils do not want to claim the teacher’s time. Then, LoopMe becomes a great channel that allows a space to communicate with a recipient. The pupils really care about this channel, they feel that LoopMe adds value. They take the work very serious and show great respect for this opportunity. Many vent via LoopMe and reflect on much more than just knowledge. The pupils think that this way to communicate is more natural for them and therefore they become more strengthened in themselves.

The use of LoopMe fosters good relationships, how so?

Lina: Good relationships where we feel affirmed are the basis for safe individuals. In order to focus on learning, we need to feel accepted and safe in the environment where this will happen. Our pupils have now really made looping a habit. Among other, we encourage them to reflect on friendships, relationships, teaching and lesson content. That way we can really capture frustrations of different kinds and at different levels. We get real-time input and can react quickly, sometimes instantly. If we had not worked with LoopMe, it could have been years without discovering conflicts, for example.

Ulrica: The pupils grow aware of how teachers and management are able to quickly access the data they produce, and then act on it. We see that trust and confidence among them grows. It also becomes easier to make changes when something is not working. Pupils take greater responsibility for actively influencing and changing when they have a communication channel that works.

A research team from Chalmers University of Technology has also followed you and your pupils during the last three years in order to measure impact in learning outcomes among the pupils. What effects did they see?

Lina: The research team confirmed our view that the motivation and in-depth learning increased significantly when working with value creation. For the researchers it was very clear that when the school work feels authentic for the pupils, both the motivation and subject knowledge are strengthened. In addition, the pupil’s skills, such as communication, social interaction, courage and perseverance, are developed. The pupils, in parallel with the acquisition of knowledge, also achieve personal maturity and self-awareness.

The research team confirmed that the motivation and in-depth learning increased significantly when working with value creation. For the researchers it was very clear that when the school work feels authentic for the pupils, both the motivation and subject knowledge are strengthened. In addition, the pupil’s skills, such as communication, social interaction, courage and perseverance, are developed. The pupils, in parallel with the acquisition of knowledge, also achieve personal maturity and self-awareness.” Lina Gustavsson

What is the next step for you?

Ulrica: During the first three years, it was only our teacher team that was working with value creation pedagogy, but since last year all teachers at Björlandagården are participating in a training programme to develop their teaching in value creation and the work is continuously evaluated and developed at the school’s teacher conferences. In order for this development to continue, a supportive school management and teachers who dare to fail along the way is required. At Björlandagården we have both, so it feels very hopeful for the future. 

Ulrica and Lina were originally interviewed for an article in Swedish by Annica Andersson, reporter and publisher at web magazine EdTech4 Change.

This blog post was edited and translated by Carin Sävetun, Me Analytics.

Developing and assessing entrepreneurial competences – interview with VET teacher Paz Fernandez de Vera

Paz Ferndandez de Vera is a VET teacher at IES El Batán, a government-funded Secondary School in Mieres (Asturias). Mieres is a former industrial and mining town of about 40.000 inhabitants located in the North of Spain. It can be considered an underprivileged area since there has been a drastic reduction in the number of jobs and some of students belong to families in which both parents are unemployed or the father has stopped working at a very young age as they became eligible for  early retirement when coal mines were closed.  The school educates 300 students at different levels ranging from Lower Secondary Education to VET tracks on Hairdressing and Beauty Therapy (ISCED 2 to 5). Paz teaches among other “Enterprise and Entrepreneurial Initiative”, a compulsory subject in all VET tracks. The time allocation for this subject is 4 hours a week.

EntreAssess is keen to know existing approaches to assessment of the entrepreneurial competence. In your opinion, to what extent is this competence important in your teaching?

This competence is essential in my daily teaching. I always tell my students that this competence deals with the development of skills for life.  I embrace a broad definition of entrepreneurial competence, that is to say the ability to have a vision, dreams, goals, detect problems, see opportunities and to transform all of this in real and added value projects through action. The soft skills put into practice to develop this competence are always the same. It does not matter if the project is social, professional, personal or financial.  I do believe that this competence should be developed from the early school levels as a cross-curricular competence.

“This competence is essential in my daily teaching. I always tell my students that this competence deals with the development of skills for life.  I embrace a broad definition of entrepreneurial competence, that is to say the ability to have a vision, dreams, goals, detect problems, see opportunities and to transform all of this in real and added value projects through action.” Paz Fernandes de Vera

What’s the best context to develop this sort of competences? Curricular, extracurricular? Projects? 

Paz Fernandez de Vera, third from the left with the blue hat

I think that this competence can be developed in all the contexts you mention. I mostly do it through projects. When I present the subject I tell my students that as a group their goal is to generate an idea that brings an added value (be it social, cultural or financial). They will have to transform this idea not in a simulated project but in a real one. This means that they will be interacting with different stakeholders such as institutions, clients, neighbours, associations, providers, experts or even students from other schools. On the first day of class I ask them to look through the window and write what they see so as to start spotting problems and opportunities. Then we go outside and I ask them to look at the same scenario in order to check how their answers to the same question change completely. I always tell them what defines “a real entrepreneur (understood as entrepreneur in life, not necessary in business), is a down-to-earth approach to problems and proper fieldwork”. So that is why I try to develop this competence through real projects in a real context.

What do you exactly assess and how? What works for you?

From my point of view, assessment is a key factor in the teaching and learning process. If assessment fails, the rest of the process collapses. In that case we will not know if there is a real learning and personal progression and we will not be able to modify things accordingly. I consider assessment as an improvement instrument that should guide the whole process and help the student (and also the teacher) to improve progressively. I assess the process and the results. How? I use different kind of rubrics. The students have the same rubrics from the beginning to assess themselves and eventually other classmates.

“From my point of view, assessment is a key factor in the teaching and learning process. If assessment fails, the rest of the process collapses. In that case we will not know if there is a real learning and personal progression and we will not be able to modify things accordingly. I consider assessment as an improvement instrument that should guide the whole process and help the student (and also the teacher) to improve progressively.”

I think that assessment implies ongoing personalised support. I provide feedback through personal interviews in which I motivate and support the student but I also place high demands on them. Another key factor for me is the importance of high expectations according to the capacity they really have, even if at time they are not aware of it. I use different kind of evidences: learning diaries, graphic organisers, online evidences. All my students’ projects are disseminated online through social media and a blog. An essential part of the entrepreneurial process is being able to communicate the project properly.

To what extent are students actively involved in the assessment?

I believe that our students should acquire the habit of assessing themselves, so they can be aware of their strengths and improvement areas. Therefore I have created a system of rubrics with colours that allow them to self-assess some of these skills on a daily basis in a visual and very easy way. As I mentioned before I conduct personal interviews with them to adjust and provide my feedback. They also assess their classmates.

What about feedback from other stakeholders?

Sometimes they get feedback from their collaborators or followers in their project but in a very informal way. It is an excellent idea, that would allow us to broaden the focus and get different and interesting perspectives.

Is this a way of assessing the entrepreneurial competence a widespread practice in your school? If not, what are the main barriers?

It is hard to tell. I would not like to make sweeping generalisations. It depends on the school and on the individual teacher but I don’t think it is widespread at all. The assessment of these competences is complex and closely linked to an specific methodology with which not all teachers are familiar with. I reckon it is also a question of the importance you attach to it in your teaching, your disposition if you wish, and last but not least, having access to training opportunities to tackle such a complicated matter with some confidence.

Progression, that is to say, envisaging a coherent and gradual acquisition of the competence, remains a big challenge.  What’s your opinion on EntreComp?

I like the framework, I consider it an excellent instrument for teachers and stakeholders. From my point of view these important competences have not been clearly explained yet. EntreComp does an important, necessary and timely pedagogical job here. I like its broad focus, not identifying the competence necessarily with setting up a business. Entrepreneurial Competence, as I mentioned before, deals with lot of important aspects of our lives that in my opinion should be developed from an early age.

What would you like to see happening next for the future?

Some time ago l was really impressed when I read a teacher quote that said something like “For a long time l pretended l was teaching and my students pretended they were learning.” That statement struck me as being particularly accurate so, going back to your question, I wish we all become increasingly aware of the importance of having proper assessment systems in place and keep working and improving them. Although I know that this is easier said than done. However, that’s the only way forward to ascertain if our students are really learning and developing this competence, guide them through the process and bring out the best of every single student.

Paz was interviewed by Iván Diego of Valnalon, partner in the EntreAssess project.

EntreAssess logo designer Daniel Huxtable features in Welsh Government’s Economic Action Plan

When we commissioned Daniel Huxtable to design the EntreAssess logo we recognised his talents but had no idea that he would later feature in the Welsh Government’s Economic plan, launched in December 2017! 

Daniel is showcased as an inspirational role model and exemplar of someone taking forward a business whilst studying at University. He is now in his third year of studying graphic design at the University of Wales Trinity Saint David and has combined his passion for martial arts with a love of graphic design to launch his bespoke fight-wear apparel business.

When responding to the brief for the EntreAssess logo, Daniel was quick to identify with the aims of the project as he highlighted that meaningful assessment of entrepreneurial skills during his schooling and university studies have been integral to his personal development.  Daniel was diagnosed with severe dyslexia at the age of 6 and it is the support of his art teacher and, in particular, the way in which his creativity was recognised and assessed that positively influenced his skills development and self-efficacy.

We congratulate Daniel on his achievements and welcome his association with us as yet another exemplar reinforcing the need for meaningful assessment tools for developing entrepreneurial capacity.

Read more about the Welsh Government’s Economic Action Plan here.



Teaching and learning entrepreneurially in a VET school – the example of San José de Calasanz in Bilabo

San José de Calasanz is a vocational training centre founded in 1969. It is located in Santurtzi, a municipality of about 50,000 inhabitants on the left bank of the Nervion River, one of the most populated areas of Metropolitan Bilbao in the Basque Country. San José de Calasanz has been training students from all ages for 45 years.

Each year approximately 1,500 students pass through their classrooms, 500 in Compulsory Education (until the age of 16) and more than 1,000 studies of initial and vocational training for unemployed people and qualification programs aimed at getting a job. They are professionals working in health, social services and community and business administration and marketing services with great tradition in their area of influence.

Teresa Monge is one of the most experienced teachers in entrepreneurial training at this school. She shares the keys to the transformation of her educational model aimed at the development of the entrepreneurial skills of the students.

About Teresa Monge, Entrepreneurial education teacher and Secondary coordinator

I’m Teresa Monge. I have been working in education for almost 20 years, 18 of them in San José de Calasanz. I’m a language teacher and I started in Vocational Training. I went to compulsory education and for the last eight years I have been a coordinator of Secondary Education. In this course I have assumed the position of Head of Studies.

What is the role of entrepreneurial education in the official curriculum of your students?

In the Basque curriculum, there is a specific competence: Competence for initiative and entrepreneurial spirit. It is a transversal competence that is a competence that must be promoted from all areas to apply in all areas of life.

In what way do these entrepreneurial skills work at school?

Until the 2015-16 academic year, entrepreneurship was stimulated and developed transversally through interdisciplinary projects in which students worked through cooperative work. However, more specific work was carried out through the “Egin eta Ekin” Entrepreneurship Program promoted by the Provincial Council of Bizkaia, where all secondary level students participate.

Specifically, the 1st and 2nd of secondary level is more powerful for the generation of ideas that stimulate creativity to design inventions that can respond to real needs. In the 3rd and 4th of secondary level, the business plan is worked through the creation of companies.

As of the 2016-17 academic year, this entrepreneurship program was included in the area of ​​Economics, since then we understood that the design of a business plan was perfectly integrated with the learning objectives of this area. Its integration in this area has made it possible to systematise the evaluation of this competence, which was not done until that moment in a specific but general way.

What level of participation does the student have in the evaluation? Does this evaluation of competences have any specific weight in the qualification of students?

The evaluation is carried out through a systematized assessment of teamwork, the product presented, the use in integration of ICTs as e-portfolios, the SET tool and the oral presentation of it. In short, it is intended to evaluate not only the final product – an idea, a business plan – but other transversal skills such as verbal and digital communication, competence to live together, to learn, to think ….

Along this project, students take an active part in the evaluation process and the results are very important because it will be a third of their final grade.

In the evaluation of the entrepreneurial skill of the students, is the evaluation a punctual evaluation or is the progress and / or development that the student has shown measured? How?

Being a competence closely linked to projects, students always work in a group, through cooperative work that allows, through the evaluation records, a daily monitoring of the work done to check progress and adjust / correct those aspects that may be subject of improvement. The act is an essential instrument in the assessment of teamwork and the final evaluation of the project.

In this evaluation process, what is the role of ICTs? Do you use evaluation platform, apps or TICs as an active part of the procedure? What is the relationship between the platform and the evaluation model? Is it used by the teacher or also by the students?

ICTs have a very important role in the development of the project. The final product, i.e. the Inventions of the 1st cycle of secondary and the Business Plan of 2nd cycle of secondary must be hosted and visible in a web platform, generally in Google Sites, without ruling out other applications. Similarly, there is a web page that shows all the inventions and business plans developed in the project of that school year: https://sites.google.com/site/eginetaekincalasanz2016/

We use digital platforms for the evaluation of the evidences of the students’ progress. Two of the most powerful tools are SET and e-portfolios where we can see and evaluate the real progress of each student between the seasons.

About students, your educational model, the new profile of citizen and worker for the 21st century, what are the main objectives why you have included entrepreneurial competences as an important part of your educational model? Are they being fulfilled? What have been the mistakes of those you have learned in this way?

As previously mentioned, entrepreneurship is part of the curriculum of our students and it is the duty of schools to stimulate and develop it. In addition, in San José de Calasanz it is part of the DNA of the school because the entrepreneurial spirit has been very much promoted with the students of VET, as a crucial part of their learning process and of improving their employment rate.  In our school, secondary students go out to continue their studies because VET levels and secondary levels follow the same vision but in general are different students.

Developing entrepreneurial competences allows students to learn to work as a team, to be protagonists of their learning, fosters creativity, stimulates multiple intelligences, digital competence, develops divergent thinking… During this process, we have learned from mistakes, many of which are closely linked to teamwork, to the use of ICTs and to student performance.

In this journey can you tell us the main milestones for the students, for the school and the future lines in the development and evaluation of the entrepreneurial skills in relation to the needs of the society and labour market?

So far, the journey has been very satisfactory. The school was the initiator of this experience in Bizkaia. On the other hand, the entrepreneurial culture in our school has been mainstreamed, allowing us to give unity and coherence to an important strategic line for us. We understand that it is increasingly important to provide students with reasons to develop their creative talent, their ability to lead, to solve problems, to work as a team, in short, to acquire those skills that will be essential in life and in the work market.


Thank you, Teresa, for sharing your experience and congratulations for the work you are doing and that of the whole school.

EntreAssess presented at International Entrepreneurship Education Summit in Germany

On 1 December, Rebecca Weicht of our project partner Bantani Education shared information about EntreAssess at the International Entrepreneurship Education Summit organised by Hochschule der Medien (Stuttgart Media University) in Stuttgart, Germany. 


Talking to an audience of learners, educators and business people, she introduced the project to great interest. 

IEES is an (un-)conference that wants to provide a platform to share innovative ideas and established best practices in teaching innovation and entrepreneurship. The focus is on learning from each other, allowing ample time for discussions and feedback. It is open to anyone teaching or promoting entrepreneurship in schools, at universities and within profit and non-profit organisations.

During Vocational Skills Week, making assessment a focus to bring VET forward!

Vocational Skills Week is coming up and the best of it is… there is some fantastic entrepreneurship education happening across Europe!

Montenegro sees the National Partnership for Entrepreneurial Learning Conference, bringing together those involved in inspiring and supporting the pathway for youth entrepreneurship, from primary level through to VET, as a key transition between college
and work. In a country which won the 2016 EuroSkills gold medal for entrepreneurship, they will share fantastic practice on equipping young people with the entrepreneurial skills they need to lead communities, run social enterprises, create businesses and even be civil servants! In Tallinn, the European Parents Association will be connecting home school cooperation, career guidance and the development of entrepreneurial skills, while young people in Sinsheim in Germany will tackle real-world business challenges in a Global Enterprise Challenge.

Entrepreneurial learning in VET is about young people developing the skills that employers are asking for – the initiative, creativity and problem-solving skills best developed through learning by doing. Isn’t it just about start up I heard you say? Not at all! These days it is so much more. Building entrepreneurial skills and mindset happens in many ways, from citizenship education to community history projects to embedding language learning into practical projects. This is more about student-led learning with teacher as guide – exploring practical solutions to a challenge and choosing the best one to transform into
entrepreneurial action.

But recognising these skills is a big challenge – so many qualifications do not and cannot because they are written exams.

But recognising these skills is a big challenge – so many qualifications do not and cannot because they are written exams. Imagine a world where a film of your learning experience or an augmented reality journey for your teacher was the assessed assignment. That would show initiative and creativity, and how teams resolved battles while working together! But to assess the skills we need to evidence how they develop. Sweden leads the way here. As all teaching practice must be evidence-based, they recently funded teachers to act as action researchers in a pilot of the LoopMe edtech tool using innovative app-based teacher-student communication loops to identify exactly when, why and how students and apprentices are developing entrepreneurial competences.

VET Skills Week is about celebrating the breadth and depth of VET learning. Let’s use the week to also make it more entrepreneurial!

Elin McCallum, Co-Founder Bantani Education and Advisor to the Montenegro National Partnership for Entrepreneurial Learning

Third Project Newsletter is out!

Our third project newsletter has been sent. Read it here (in English)!

Our previous newsletters are all here on the blog.

Sign up to our mailing list to not miss any future editions: http://eepurl.com/cruSrb


The future of education: Learning for a multiplicity of realities

Augmented reality (AR) is expected to have a significant impact on education over the next few decades. AR is a technology that uses data gleaned from the Internet, sensors embedded in our portable devices, and novel display technologies to create digital overlays that are mapped onto the environment that we directly perceive. The result is a perceived environment that not only consists of its physical properties, but can be made to present itself in any way that we choose, whether it be an environment that tells us about itself, interactive dinosaurs that emerge from a page in a book, to Pokemons hiding in bushes in our favorite park.

AR will not only affect what we will need to learn and how we will learn it, it will also fundamentally change our relationship with our environment, and has in fact already begun to do so. It is not unrealistic to expect that, within the next several years, the youth in our schools will have grown accustomed to traversing a multiplicity of realities, each having its own distinct properties, cultures, rules of engagement, and knowledge formats. One day they may battle aliens trying to break through the walls around them, and the next, participate in a simulated collaborative work environment involving individuals from all over the world. The possibilities are seemingly endless.

In professional development activities led by the University of Iceland’s Education Plaza (www.menntamidja.is) over the past several years, Icelandic educators have been encouraged to consider some of the challenges and opportunities that AR can be expected to bring to learning environments. Among some of the themes for future learning in AR environments that have emerged are:

  • More collaborative learning
  • Integrated thematic or “phenomenon based” (PhenoBL) learning
  • Use of authentic simulated environments for learning
  • Learning “how and why” vs. “what”
  • Creative construction and use of emergent realities

Many of the changes suggested by these themes can already be observed. Collaborative learning and integrated subjects are certainly popular themes and are being institutionalised through policy and national curricula throughout Europe and beyond. Other themes are more forward-looking and challenging, in particular those that hint at radical changes in the form, function and purpose of learning environments. These raise difficult questions that educators will need to address sooner than later:

  • What do we teach in school when our environment can teach us about itself?
  • Where will our future learners go when they “go to school”?
  • How do we assess learning for a multiplicity of realities?
  • How do we educate people today for an increasingly uncertain future?

Tryggvi Thayer, Project Manager, University of Iceland School of Education