Entrepreneurship is an important aspect of the U.S. and global economy. As such, developing an entrepreneurial mindset is crucial for both engineering students and practicing engineers. The purpose of this paper is to investigate the role of online discussions, as a pedagogical approach, in the development of the entrepreneurial mindset. Online discussions prompts were developed using the Kern Engineering Entrepreneurial Network (KEEN) framework as a guide. The KEEN framework proposes an entrepreneurial mindset can be fostered in students by stimulating curiosity, strengthening connections, and creating value. This paper describes the methodology and rationale that served as the foundation for this exploratory study. Examples are provided for online discussion prompts developed and administered in two different environmental engineering undergraduate courses: Introduction to Environmental Engineering (three credit, undergraduate, online course offered during two different summer sessions) and Seminar in Environmental Engineering (one credit, undergraduate level, face-to-face course offered during one semester). Quantitative and qualitative methods were used to analyze and assess potential impacts of online discussion prompt use. The findings provide lessons learned for integrating the KEEN framework into undergraduate engineering courses through online discussions.
Entrepreneurial mindset, online discussions, writing
Date of this Version
Bosman, L., Duval-Couetil, N., Mayer, B., & McNamara, P. (2019). Using Online Discussions to Develop the Entrepreneurial Mindset in Environmental Engineering Undergraduates: A Case Study. International Journal of Engineering Pedagogy, 9(3).