course introduces the fundamentals of technology entrepreneurship,
pioneered in Silicon Valley and now influencing other locations around
the world. You will learn the process used by technology entrepreneurs
to start companies. It involves taking a technology idea and finding a
high-potential commercial opportunity, gathering resources such as
talent and capital, figuring out how to sell and market the idea, and
manage rapid growth. The class demonstrates the entrepreneurial
mindset ... when others see insurmountable problems, people look for
opportunities in technology and business solutions. A technology
entrepreneurial perspective is also a wonderful way of thinking in order
to tackle new opportunities in social entrepreneurship, whether it is
in government or NGOs (non-profits).
course is designed for undergraduates from all majors, including
science, engineering, and humanities students who seek to understand an
entrepreneurial mindset and the key processes in entrepreneurship and
innovation. Topics introduced in this course are relevant for future
founders of enterprises, future employees of an independent or corporate
venture, and anyone seeking to understand and support entrepreneurship
studies, lectures, workshops, and projects that cover high-growth
ventures in information technology, electronics, life sciences, green
technology and other industries, this course provides the student with
the tools necessary to successfully identify a true business opportunity
and to start, grow and maintain a technology enterprise.
We have organized this course into three modules consisting of multiple sessions each:
- The Entrepreneurial Mindset and Opportunity
- Assembling Resources and Managing Growth
- Entrepreneurship and You
Entrepreneurship is both
an individual and team activity. Therefore this course incorporates
both individual and group efforts. Students form project teams early in
the quarter and meet regularly to prepare for class discussion. We
encourage students to build groups with people from a diversity of
majors and past experiences.
Each team will be required to
complete written case analyses throughout the quarter. Teams are also
required to complete assignments regarding an "Opportunity Analysis
Plan." In addition, students submit individual email assignments and
complete a "Personal Business Plan" using methods learned in the course.
Group discussion is encouraged in preparing for both the team
and individual assignments. Note that learning to successfully manage
group dynamics, including conflicts and roles, is a key educational
component of the course.
There is no final exam.
During this term, the course will be held only on Wednesdays and Fridays from 9:30AM-11:20AM. No class on Mondays, except for a special required session on Monday, 9/28/15 at 9:30AM. All sessions take place in Littlefield Room 107.
4 units. Letter grade or CR/NC.
Students will be evaluated based on attendance and
contribution to in-class discussions and sections, as well as timely completion
of assigned readings and email assignments. Think of this as an opportunity
to stretch yourself and learn skills like teamwork, public speaking, persuasive
writing, and defending your ideas, as well as the fundamentals of the
entrepreneurial process. The teaching team will endeavor to create a
supportive environment, where there is no penalty for taking a definite stance
and expressing new ideas.
are only ten weeks in this course, barely the minimum necessary to
cover the essentials of this subject. Given the importance of class participation and its grading, we will do
our best to get to know you quickly. Feel free to discuss the course
and your learning progress with the instructors at any time. Given the
pace of this course, we will do all that we can to use class time
effectively and ask you to do the same. This includes starting and
ending on time. We will end each class either early or by the end of the
assigned period. All of our distinguished guest instructors and
speakers are aggressive, successful, and articulate. Interrupt and ask
them questions at any time. They will be forewarned. They will display
an earnest desire to help you understand entrepreneurship.
Grading Policy and Assignments
course is available for letter grade. Grading will be determined by a combination of individual (a total 50%) and team (a total of 50%) effort:
Note that this course has no formal final exam. There
is an opportunity to earn additional credit. If you are
on the “borderline” between grading levels, these assignments will be taken into consideration:
- Stanford's Entrepreneurial Thought Leader talks in person (or via video and podcast) from this autumn quarter. Submit an
email by December 4, 2015 at 8AM with a paragraph each regarding lessons learned from any 3 of the 8 speakers.
- Course takeaways slide in Session #20. With your team, produce and present one slide with your major
takeaways for the course. Post it on
your website before the last session of class. You will be given time to present it in class4
will be evaluated on their participation in
classroom discussions, whether about the case under consideration or
topic of the lecture. The grading of classroom participation is
because of an element of subjectivity not present in grading written
assignments. Nevertheless, it is a vital part of the course. Most
comfortable in speaking up with thoughtful comments and questions, but
not, and we wish to be fair to everyone. We will not be grading on "air
time", but rather on the quality of the question or comment.
Participating in classroom discussions, freely and without fear, is
urged. No opinion is held in disregard, and only through active
discussion can we arrive at some consensus of reasonable action. It is
our intention to embarrass anyone -- if you are not prepared, let one of
know before class and we will not call on you. Being punctual, present
prepared for our class sessions is an important part of contributing to
our learning community. Thank you for your commitment to be an active
to class discussions. If you expect to miss a class,
please let the instructor know ahead of time via email. It will be your
responsibility to find out what material was covered, what additional
assignments were made, and to obtain any handouts you may have missed.
No more than one unexcused absence is allowed without significant
consequences to the course grade.
All assigned readings are to be completed before the session. Each required reading has been specifically chosen
to provide a certain insight or skill; thus, every assignment is
mandatory. Though there is no way to verify that students have read the
material before class, all lectures, study questions, assignments, and
exams assume a fundamental understanding of many concepts provided by the
readings. Consequently, failure to keep up with the assignments will have
an adverse effect on a student's grade.
In the Technology Ventures textbook, only a few highlighted sections in each chapter are required.
Supplementary readings are suggested that provide additional
depth and richness for the topics considered each day. These readings are not
required. While we hope that you will return to these readings as time permits,
you are not expected to have completed the readings prior to class. As your
time permits, we highly recommend skimming the recommended readings - an
investment that we believe can be very rewarding.
are encouraged to discuss each session in advance with
your fellow students. In fact, you are required to form a study group
consisting of four other students and then meet regularly before each
class. These study groups will be formed early in the quarter. The study
questions are helpful preparation aids for each case while meeting
with your study partners. Use the study questions for each session to
prepare for class; the answers are not to be included in the e-mail
although they may be used to focus and guide your homework discussion.
Unless stated otherwise, assignments are to be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org
by 8AM the day of the session
. Format your header in the following way: E145: Case
Name, Team Name (e.g., E145: Yahoo, Adventure Capitalist Team)
- Team Online Assignments - Team online assignments
and case analyses are to be discussed as a team and then submitted via
e-mail to the appropriate homework list. The person who submits the
assignment via e-mail should include the team name at the top of the
submission and other team members in the 'cc' field. The team online assignments will count towards the team
grade. Teams will be assigned to either Group A or Group B. Each "grouping" of teams is responsible for submitting cases on their assigned
Online Assignments - These assignments MAY be discussed in teams,
unless the assignment explicitly states otherwise. However,
each person must submit his/her own assignment. Online
should be clear and concise, and expressed in the same style as
case analysis submissions. These online assignments will be counted
towards the individual participation grade.
Case Analysis Guidelines
case study is intended to give you an opportunity to apply the concepts
of the course in the context of a "real" business situation. Each of
the cases are based on a key situation or event in the history of a high-impact enterprise. The cases we will cover are:
- Golden State Warriors
- Barbara's Options
should reflect an understanding of the critical issues of the case,
integrate the material covered in class and present concise and well
reasoned justification for the stance that the group takes. Each case
analysis should consist of:
- A response to the question(s)
under "Case Analysis" on the relevant session page of the website (this
is not necessarily what is shown at the end of the case itself - always defer to the syllabus or the website). Clearly state the decision or recommendation for action with the appropriate supporting arguments.
brief analysis of the situation and pending decision problem, as
presented in the case, and as relevant to your answer. This should be
exceptionally brief and you should assume the person reading the
assignment is familiar with the details of the case.
Please read a tutorial on the case method
prepared by Fred Gibbons.
total length of each case analysis should be no more than two pages,
with one page greatly preferred. Cases longer than two pages will
receive a minus(-) grade. Team case assignments should be prepared as a
team, but only one submission is required. Students may discuss
individual case assignments with their group (and are encouraged to),
but should submit their own work. Assignments should be submitted via
e-mail no later than 8AM the morning of the corresponding session in
In general, use a bullet-point format and keep the email
short and concise. The teaching team reads each response before class
starts to optimize that session's learning environment. Grading is on a
"plus(+)/check/minus(-)" basis. We will often post one or two
submissions to stimulate further on-line discussion. We prefer your
homework to be in the body of the email if at all possible, unless we
specifically ask for a table or similar item so that a PDF document
makes more sense.
Style Guidelines for Online Submissions
Avoid common errors in online assignments, case analyses and other submissions, such as:
- Focusing too heavily on minor issues or those on which there are little data.
- Lamenting because of insufficient data in the case and ignoring creative alternatives.
- Rehashing of case data -- assume the reader knows the case.
- Not appropriately evaluating the quality of the case's data.
- Obscuring the quantitative analysis, making it difficult to understand.
Typical "minus(-)" grades result from submissions that
- Are late, exceed the page limit, or lack clarity.
- Do not address timing issues nor seem practical.
- Get carried away with personal biases and are not pertinent to the key issues.
- Are not thoroughly proofread and corrected.
We will be using Piazza for discussion outside of the classroom, as well as announcements and questions to the instructors. Please note that your participation on Piazza will be taken into account for your overall participation grade.
Students with documented disabilities: Students who
may need an academic accommodation based on the impact of a disability
must initiate the request with the Student Disability Resource Center
(SDRC) located within the Office of Accessible Education (OAE). SDRC
staff will evaluate the request with required documentation, recommend
reasonable accommodations, and prepare an Accommodation Letter
for faculty dated in the current quarter in which the request is being
made. Students should contact the SDRC as soon as possible since
timely notice is needed to coordinate accommodations. The OAE is
located at 563 Salvatierra Walk (phone: 723-1066).