Towards Designing an Experience-based Course around Innovation Bootcamps — A Cohort Study
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionCico, O., Jaccheri, L., & Duc, A. N. (2020). Towards Designing an Experience-based Course around Innovation Bootcamps—A Cohort Study. 2020 IEEE Frontiers in Education Conference (FIE), 1-9. https://doi.org/10.1109/FIE44824.2020.9274225
Context: This full research paper presents an experience-based course designed around a semester-long external Innovation Bootcamp activity. Objective: We sought to evaluate the impact of Innovation Bootcamp on students’ learning and startup formation. To this end, we measured how the Innovation Bootcamp affected students' perceived challenges related to technical, soft project management skills and the startup formation mindset. Method: We conducted a cohort study comprising questionnaires, interviews, and focus groups with both students and stakeholders participating in the Innovation Bootcamp. In total, 44 students participated in the questionnaires run before and after the Innovation Bootcamps during both academic years. Moreover, we conducted four individual interviews (student cohort 1), four focus group interviews (student cohort 2), and six individual interviews with different stakeholders participating in the Innovation Bootcamp during both years. Results: We find that perceptions of challenges regarding soft and project management skills drop, while perceptions regarding technical skills challenges do not vary during the course. Students exhibit increased motivation to engage in startup formation following close collaboration with external stakeholders only after developing their first minimum viable product. Contribution: The overall outcomes of the study contribute to validating a new course design model, which will help develop a course framework to help future educators, researchers, and practitioners adopt Innovation Bootcamp activities within a software engineering-focused experience-based course.