BA Modern Language and Business & Management (Chinese) / Course details

Year of entry: 2024

Course unit details:
Entrepreneur: Innovator and Risk-Taker

Course unit fact file
Unit code UCIL24002
Credit rating 10
Unit level Level 2
Teaching period(s) Semester 2
Available as a free choice unit? Yes


Successful entrepreneurs are characterised by their ability to take risks in order to generate innovations. By exercising judgement, they develop those innovations into viable businesses. As their business grows, the entrepreneur and their employees must often generate further innovations to remain competitive.

This unit focuses on how entrepreneurs generate the ideas that allow them to create and grow their firm. We will examine how entrepreneurs discover ideas and how they implement them. The unit is grounded in research-led teaching but also links into the wider employability agenda. It is relevant for all students, with no prior business knowledge required.

This unit forms part of the Enterprise Challenge.


There are no exclusions and the unit is available for students from any School. No previous business or management knowledge is required


This unit aims to show you how to recognise business opportunities and how to evaluate them. Evidence is drawn from a range of case studies, covering the Middle Ages to the present day. These case studies will be used to illustrate the causes that contribute to business success and business failure, and to show how ideas relevant to business can be generated by a range of activities including hobbies and previous employment.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the unit, you will be able to:
  • Describe the different methods through which entrepreneurs generate and implement ideas
  • Review the role of innovation, marketing, entrepreneurship and collaboration within a business environment, together with the barriers to growth
  • Apply academic definitions of entrepreneurship to a range of scenarios and case studies
  • Be able to consider how entrepreneurs react to, and drive, wider social and political changes
  • Evaluate the entrepreneurial skills needed within a successful business and how these may be transferred between different sectors


Lecture 1: Entrepreneurial characteristics of individuals and firms

Lecture 2: Where do ideas come from?

Explore factors that influence innovation in products and services, including those that motivate entrepreneurs (opportunity and necessity) and those that aid their knowledge of the market (previous employment).

Lectures 3-8: Characteristics of creative and innovative organisations

Innovations have been introduced by entrepreneurs into a number of sectors. These lectures examine the impact of entrepreneurs in the sectors of clothing and homeware, beauty, agriculture and natural resources, transport and communication, music and technology. We'll also reinforce the examination of the idea generation process by considering how entrepreneurs react to, or even drive, changes in the wider social and political environment.

You will learn about the role of collaboration in entrepreneurial success, including across different disciplines and skills sets. In order to gain customers, many entrepreneurs have made innovations in marketing, and the significance of those is examined.

Lectures 9-11: Managing innovation in large and small firms / Barriers to growth

Successful entrepreneurs often grow their firm through further innovations. However, there are barriers to growth, including the financing of additional research and development and the management of employees. These lectures examine the challenges and consider how both large and small firms can overcome them.

Lecture 12: Conclusion

Teaching and learning methods

The unit is delivered as a series of 12 x 2 hour lectures and 76 hours of independent study


Knowledge and understanding

  • Appreciate the process of idea generation, evaluation and creating value for both entrepreneurs and organisations
  • Recognise the variety of internal and external forces impacting on businesses today both in the profit and not for profit sectors
  • Appreciate key business and management concepts

Intellectual skills

  • Critically evaluate the role creativity has within an organisation
  • Review the relationship between creativity, innovation, management and entrepreneurship
  • Critically evaluate the role creativity and its models play in the value creation process

Practical skills

  • Identify and extract relevant information
  • Demonstrate analytical and critical skills by applying concepts methods and concepts
  • Demonstrate written and oral presentation and communication skills
  • Develop the ability to frame and solve problems and think creatively

Transferable skills and personal qualities

  • Demonstrate teamwork skills and work constructively in groups
  • Communicate in an effective manner
  • Develop commercial awareness
  • Utilise problem-solving skills
  • Develop and apply research skills

Employability skills

Analytical skills
Group/team working
Oral communication
Problem solving
Written communication

Assessment methods

  1. 2 x 1000 word case study analyses (50% each) OR
  2. 2000 word written assignment on innovation at the sector level (100%)

Feedback methods

Feedback will be provided throughout the Semester during lectures and via Blackboard. Feedback will be provided within 15 working days of submission of formative and summative coursework.

Study hours

Scheduled activity hours
Lectures 24
Independent study hours
Independent study 76

Teaching staff

Staff member Role
Catherine Casson Unit coordinator

Additional notes

The Manchester Enterprise Challenge is one of a range of awards that combine University College academic provision and extra-curricular activity.

The Manchester Enterprise Challenge has two components:

  • Completion of a 10 credit `enterprise¿ University College unit (three to choose from)
  • Completion of an approved `enterprise¿ activity project ¿ which might involve working with a locally based business, charity or social enterprise to address  and analyse a specific  improvement opportunity (assuming around 20 hours of work)
  • The extra-curricular project can be undertaken as part of a group or as an individual and at times that are flexible
  • Recommendations will be presented as a PowerPoint `pitch deck¿

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