Lesley and I worked on a collaborative project delivering SimVenture Evolution to a large group of Business Management students with a key focus on employability skills. Lesley was fabulous to work with. She was creative in the classroom and very adaptable when training staff. She has a real passion for what she does which shines at all times. I would definitely recommend working with Lesley on any project. She is always on top of things, incredibly organised, a great communicator and a real team player.
Anna Howard – Head of Division, Business and Enterprise – LSBU
The increasing number of SimVenture Evolution undergraduate programs within UK Higher Education Institutions is testimony to the flexibility and strength of the software. The on-line business simulation is used in modules including: business management, finance, entrepreneurship, enterprise and employability skills, marketing, law and operations management.
Southampton Solent University has used the simulation within its business and marketing degrees (see case study for more detail). Modules and programs that have taken advantage of the simulation include:
- Application of Corporate & Business Awareness
- Marketing Planning
- Taster sessions for College students
Senior Lecturers at Solent noted how undergraduates took to the on-line simulation technology and enjoyed working both individually and in teams. One academic at the institution said: “Evolution is sophisticated technology and a couple of hours are needed to show students how to use the learning solution. However, young people are quick to adapt to on-line learning as millennial behaviour research shows they prefer to work this way. Evolution is also a great peer-to-peer learning resource.”
Reflecting on their experience of using the simulation at Southampton, one student said: “The simulation game helped me to gain knowledge as to how to run a business, as there are different areas of the business such as the marketing and the finance department. The fact that the game provides a customer report helped me to see whether my customers were satisfied with my product or not, and every time the customer satisfaction was low, I had to make changes to satisfy the customer’s needs.”
University of Nottingham
The University of Nottingham uses Evolution with over 300 first-year students as part of a ‘New Venture Creation’ course. Working in teams, students had to start and run a company and deal with all aspects of business.
Following the success of the first course in 2017, Programme Director, Chris Mahon said, “SimVenture Evolution provides a robust and realistic platform for the integration of theory and practice, which is absolutely crucial to entrepreneurship education. Students get to see for themselves what works – and what doesn’t – by working through the ‘fail-learn-redo’ cycle in a safe and controlled environment.”
Chris also added, “The Control Tower feature is a real time-saver because it allows tutors to organise student groups, check student progress and gather/assess performance data with relative ease.”
Growing use of the on-line business simulation within HEIs
From 2017, the following institutions also developed SimVenture Evolution undergraduate modules and programs:
University West Scotland, University of Leeds, University of Hertfordshire, University of Reading, South Wales University, Birmingham City University, University College Birmingham, Swansea University, University College London, University of Kent, Oaklands College, Swansea College, University West London, York St John University, University of Dundee, Liverpool John Moores University, University of Liverpool and Edinburgh Napier University.