Reality-Based Learning: Preparing Students for Life – The Experience of Implementing the Model of Swedish Enterprise Education in Russia (SEED Russia)

Reality-Based Learning: Preparing Students for Life – The Experience of Implementing the Model of Swedish Enterprise Education in Russia (SEED Russia)

Lyudmila Murgulets (Stockholm School of Economics, Russia) and Mats Johansson (The Swedish Retail and Wholesale Council, Sweden)
Copyright: © 2019 |Pages: 23
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-6951-0.ch013

Abstract

This chapter describes the experience of the project on the adaptation of the Swedish model of training through entrepreneurship in the north-west region of Russia. The model was developed by the Swedish Foundation for Entrepreneurship Training and has been used in Swedish schools for over 20 years. The chapter's co-author served as the project manager in Russia from the Stockholm School of Economics. In addition, the co-author participated in the development of a short course, “Understanding the Life of Business,” for secondary school teachers. The chapter describes the concept, the specifics of its application in Russia, presents all stages of the project work, the results obtained, and the current situation.
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(Seed) Swedish Enterprise Education

The basis of the SEED model is to give pupils an opportunity to work with reality based assignments together with grownup people from real life. In the process, they become active and independent problem-solvers working with assignments that are complex and involve more than one subject. Through a series of projects together with a mentor company, they gain knowledge in subjects like Business Administration, Civics, Information Technology and their native language as well as competencies such as communication and social skills. But most important of all, the model helps the pupils train the ability to recognize opportunities and make something out of them that will be extremely valuable to them in their future private and professional life as students, employees, project leaders and entrepreneurs. As the assignments are solved in cooperation with people from the local society, the results become useful outside the school. This highly motivates the pupils. The contacts with a mentor company also give the pupils an understanding of the conditions for business life.

The SEED model is not only empowering the students for the start of their professional life. Enterprise Education has proved to be a learning process that develops skills and competencies needed throughout the whole life. It has also proved to be rewarding for teachers and mentor companies.

Students are always highly motivated in working on SEED projects. They feel more independent, grownup, begin to understand the meaning of their study in school, begin to understand the business life. Many school subjects are in a demand to work on projects. It increases the motivation of learning in school.

During the work on the projects, students solve significant life problems. Students communicate with people outside of school. They get acquainted with the business life on their own and importantly without a teacher. They receive feedback from the mentor companies’ representatives with whom they work together on the project. The main focus of the project: “What can be changed or improved in business?”. Students conduct 3-4 scientific researches and prepare a report to solve a specific problem, implement the new idea or new opportunities. They see how they change themselves, how much they learn. The project increases the student's self-esteem and confidence.

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