Welcome to the Researching Entrepreneurship and Innovation (Master's thesis seminar) course (MNGT-E3001)!
The primary aim of this course is to introduce Master's students in Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management to the basic steps of conducting research in their field of specialisation and help them to apply it to their planned master thesis.
In essence, research in entrepreneurship and innovation consists of asking important questions and using scientific methods to design and implement ways of answering these questions. There is generally no one right way to approach these issues (although there are definitely wrong ways!). Instead, research in entrepreneurship and innovation consists of numerous choices that involve trade-offs. We will start the course by introducing relevant topic areas in entrepreneurship and innovation to have an idea about what is 'hot' in this field at the moment. We then address the research process (including identifying research questions, philosophy of science) and trade-offs among research designs such as the choice to use qualitative versus quantitative methods. We will also cover main qualitative and quantitative methods applied in entrepreneurship and innovation research.
It is important to know that it is up to your own interest and needs to choose the order in which you proceed in this course. The topics are already organized in a suitable order. Each topic comes with a set of readings and in most cases short introductory videos. Please note that neither the topics nor the readings covered should be considered to be exhaustive. We simply cannot cover everything in the time allotted. The purpose is to provide a solid foundation in the important issues related to each topic and the field as a whole. The overall goal of the course is to help prepare students to develop interesting research questions and pursue answers to them by using appropriate scientific methods. These are essential prerequisites for a successful Master's thesis.
Before engaging with the sessions of this course please take a look at the more detailed description of the course structure below, and see the Syllabus (top-right corner on this page) and familiarise yourself with the main requirements to complete the course successfully.
Please make sure to familiarize yourself with the preliminary assignment. Without submitting this short piece of work, it will not be possible for you to go on with this course.
For any enquiry regarding this course please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Course Structure and Materials
The course consists of 8 topics that cover the basics of qualitative and quantitative research:
Basics of Qualitative Research in Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management
- Topic 1: Different qualitative approaches to inquiry
- Topic 2: Observation and Note-Taking
- Topic 3: Interviewing and non-mainstream approaches to collect data
- Topic 4: Qualitative Data Analysis
Basics of Quantitative Research in Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management
- Topic 5: Quantitative Data
- Topic 6: From Theory to Empirics
- Topic 7: Quantitative Analysis
- Topic 8: Interpreting and Publishing Research Findings
Each topic will include reading materials and videos that will introduce you to the core themes. In addition, you may be asked to independently look for more information.
Introductory session on Friday 4.11.
We will organize an online introductory session on the course on Friday 4th of November at 14.15-16.00. Participation is voluntary, but recommended.
Feedback sessions on 25.11. and 16.12.
The course includes two obligatory assignments (20 points for assignment 1 and 32 points for assignment 2) that allows you to develop your skills as a researcher, and to work on a topic that is of interest to you. We offer an online feedback session after each of the obligatory assignments:
- The first feedback session is on Friday 25th of November at 14.15-16.00.
- The second feedback session is on Friday 16th of December at 14.15-16.00.
Participation in the feedback sessions is voluntary.
The Introductory and Feedback sessions will be organized in a Zoom Meeting.
To join the meeting:
Since this course should help and assist you in the process of your master thesis paper, you should already have a rough idea about the topic you want to proceed. Small changes might still occur, but the overall direction should already be present. Therefore you need to submit till tuesday the 1st of November already some first ideas about your future research project. You will find more information about it under the "Assignments" section. And don't stress out too much about this. This should just be a kind of ground work we will then work on, allocate you to your supervisor and know which research methods you should focus on for the upcoming assignments.
Obligatory Assignments – due 22.11. and 16.12.
The course includes two obligatory assignments (20 points and 32 points) that allow you to develop your skills as a researcher, and to work on a topic that is of interest to you. The first assignment focuses on either on Qualitative or Quantitative Research (depending on your planned master thesis topic) and it is due Tuesday the 22nd of November at 10 am. The second assignment will focus on your particular research methodology and it is due Friday the 16th of December at 10 am.
You must complete and pass these 2 obligatory assignments in order to pass the course. However, note that they only amount to a maximum of 52 points of the total 100 points of this course and it might be very difficult to reach the maximum amount of points. In order to pass the course, you need to collect a minimum of 50 points from these exercises and the assignments. Therefore I strongly encourage you to also work on the exercises.
We offer an online feedback session after each of the obligatory assignments (see information above). The participation is voluntary.
Topic Exercises – due 22.11. and 16.12.
In association to each topic there are two small exercises (3 points each), which test the comprehension of the topic and help you to develop skills to critically read and evaluate scientific research. These exercises are voluntary. However, if you do not complete them, you will automatically loose the points they are worth, and cannot get the highest grade from the course. Altogether the voluntary exercises amount to a maximum of 48 points of the total 100 points of this course (8 session, 2 exercises in each session, 3 points for each exercise).
The first set of exercises (Either 1-4 (Qualitative) or 5-8 (Quantitative); depending on your planned master thesis research framework) are due Tuesday the 22nd of November, and the second set of exercises are due due till Friday the 16th of December at 10 am.
Elaboration of the Evaluation Criteria and Methods
In order to pass the course, you need to collect a minimum of 50 points in the exercises and assignments. Note, it is mandatory to submit both assignments, but you may choose the number of exercises. If you decide to skip some exercises you will no longer have the possibility to score maximum points, as in each exercise you can score a maximum of 3 points of the final grade.
For more information on the points to grade conversion, see Table below:
Course Evaluation Overview
1. Qualitative Research Exercises
- Assignment 1
- Quantitative Research Exercises
- Assignment 2
Points conversion scale
90 - 100
80 - 89
70 - 79
60 - 69
50 - 59
0 - 49
This is a self-paced online course, and as such the students can decide how to allocate the topics according to their own speed, needs and interests. Just keep in mind the exercise and assignment deadlines
04 November – 16 December 2022
Preliminary Exercise due till Tuesday 1st of November at 10 am
Introduction session on Friday, 4th of November at 14.15 Finish time zone (optional)
Topic 1: Different qualitative approaches to inquiry and Sampling
Topic 2: Observation and Note-taking
Topic 3: Interviewing and non-mainstream approaches to collect data
Topic 4: Qualitative Data Analysis
Assignment 1 and Exercises (Topics 1-4) due on Tuesday 22.11. at 10 am
Feedback Session on Friday 25.11. at 14.15 Finish time zone (optional)
Topic 5: Quantitative Data
Topic 6: From Theory to Empirics
Topic 7: Quantitative Analysis
Topic 8: Interpreting and Publishing Research Findings
Assignment 2 and Exercises (Topics 5-8) due on Friday 16.12. at 10am
Feedback Session on Friday 16.12. at 14.15 Finish time zone (optional)
Some suggestions to create learning synergies with other Aalto courses:
This course works complementary to other Aalto research method courses, such as ‘26E02900 Doing Quantitative Analysis’ or ‘21E00011 Doing Qualitative Research’.
If you are interested in learning more about entrepreneurship and innovation management research, or you are writing a thesis on the topic, we recommend to combine this course with the online course ‘25E55000 Entrepreneurship and Society’ to strengthen your theoretical understanding of entrepreneurship research.
- Topic 1: Different qualitative approaches to inquiry