Venture Lab is part of a Stanford University project to offer free online classes with a focus on experiential and collaborative aspects of learning. Their first class on technology entrepreneurship by Chuck Eesley, Assistant Professor at Stanford University in the Department of Management Science and Engineering (MS&E), has attracted tens of thousands of students from over a hundred countries around the world.The course, designed on a Learn (from Stanford Professors), Connect(in teams with people around the world) and Accomplish(work on projects that make a difference), philosophy, introduces the fundamentals of technology entrepreneurship, pioneered in Silicon Valley and now spreading across the world. 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 managing rapid growth. Students form teams and work on their start up project together. In the current class, tens of thousands of students have signed up, formed teams, and are working on their projects.
This course is taught online, via the instructor’s blog. Students can choose to simply “audit” the course, by doing any or all of reading the blog posts, watching the videos, and participating in the discussions in the blog comments. Alternatively, students can get more out of the experience by joining a team either offline or via venture-labs.org, and can work with their teammates on projects. Teams can post links to their project material in blog comments, and can comment on each others’ work. The instructor may occasionally view projects, and may post comments, but there is no guarantee that he will view or comment on any particular student or team’s work.
Although the course is complete and the schedule for the next one is awaited, in the meanwhile, what you budding entrepreneurs can do is view the complete material - videos and suggested references - which will definitely prove to be a great value add.
Did any of you take this course? We'd be glad to hear your experiences!