Aarhus University Seal

Gamification of the reflective exercise in the Entrepreneurship classroom: Can a mountain goat really prod you to make better reflections – Tales of a “SavvyGoat”

IMC Tuesday Seminar: Talk by Rajiv Vaid Basaiawmoit, Head of SciTech Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Aarhus university

Info about event


Tuesday 28 November 2023,  at 11:00 - 12:30


Jens Chr. Skous Vej 4, 8000 Aarhus C, building 1483, room 312 and online (https://aarhusuniversity.zoom.us/my/imcevent)


Interacting Minds Centre


Entrepreneurship Education (EEd) in HEI’s is generally a practice based education (Neck & Greene, 2014). However, the fast-paced nature of EEd today from mapping the market needs to creating compelling pitches may unintentionally undermine the reflective component in experiential EEd. Educators who understand and value reflective learning try and incorporate reflections into an entrepreneurial process either by deploying reflective journals or diaries (Jones, 2019; Lundmark et. al., 2019, Hagg, 2021). 
The use of reflective logs, diaries, journals, post-course reflection essays are the most common form of reflection exercises in the EEd classroom today. However, I have identified 3 weaknesses of these current methods: 

  1. Perception of value of the reflection log: Most students find reflection logs as a cumbersome activity.  A reflection log is often expected to be between 500-1000 words while a reflective essay may easily be >1500 words (Hagg, 2021). This can be a challenge in an action-based entrepreneurship course where the focus is on doing and getting results as well as the time challenges that such a course offers. Experiential entrepreneurship courses are time-demanding, and rightfully so as there is a significant amount of ground to cover (if one assumes the standard experiential module to cover opportunity identification all through to value extraction and communication). This leads to students under-estimating the time and effort required when also juggling other courses at the same time which can lead to the reflection logs becoming a “job-to-be-done” and inevitably being a log devoid of true reflection. 
  2. Understanding what “reflection” really means: Yeoh (2017) in a study of 140 reflection logs, found that self-confessional writing was a very challenging and unfamiliar (in an academic environment) task for most students and the study found that students not only need guidance in terms of how-to-do a good reflection but also to instill the confidence that it is OK to voice their personal opinion, own thinking, and sensitivity into their journal. Thus, one has the challenge of also improving the reflective ability of the student (Greene, 2014).
  3. Reflections as a solitary activity: Most reflective journals are by their nature individual. However, if Entrepreneurship is viewed and encouraged as a team activity, why should the reflective journals also not be team-reflections? If the act of doing reflections is viewed as boring/challenging (points 1&2) maybe it is less so as a team?

To address these weaknesses and to also improve the quality of reflections in especially science and engineering students, I have partnered up with a startup from London – called SavvyGoat – who have developed a tool that tries to gamify the journalling and reflection activity. In a very practice-oriented approach – this talk will ask if we can make the reflection task modular sprinkled throughout a course rather than at the very end? Are team reflections more effective than individual reflections or complementary? Do competition and reflection go hand-in-hand? 

About the speaker

Rajiv Vaid Basaiawmoit, Head of SciTech Innovation and Entrepreneurship, Aarhus University


Free of charge - All are welcome