Predicting entrepreneurial motivation among university students: the role of entrepreneurship education

Minoo Farhangmehr, Paulo Gonçalves, Maria Sarmento

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

55 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: – The purpose of this paper is to better understand the main drivers of entrepreneurial motivation among university students and to determine whether entrepreneurship education has a moderating effect on improving the impact of knowledge base and entrepreneurship competencies on entrepreneurial motivation. Design/methodology/approach: – This study uses a mixed-method approach that combines qualitative interviews and a cross-sectional survey of a sample of 465 university students. Findings: – The study reveals that entrepreneurship competencies are a predictor of entrepreneurship motivation but that knowledge base is not. Additionally, entrepreneurship education does not improve the motivation of university students to become entrepreneurs. These findings suggest that, to increase entrepreneurial motivation, pedagogy should emphasize the development of students’ entrepreneurial psychological and social skills by covering in particular the emotional dimension and critical thinking. Originality/value: – This research contributes to the literature on entrepreneurship education and provides strategic recommendations for university managers and education-policy makers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)861-881
Number of pages21
JournalEducation and Training
Issue number7-8
Publication statusPublished - 8 Aug 2016


  • Entrepreneurial competencies
  • Entrepreneurial motivations
  • Entrepreneurship education


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