Course Description

SBT is an experiential course in which students work on developing and testing the idea(s) and assumptions for a new venture.  The course combines theory with hands-on entrepreneurship. Students will test each aspect of the business model outside the class, and share the insights with their peers in class. By the end of the course, teams of students will have completed a business plan and be able to demonstrate the business opportunity.

Course Learning Outcomes and Course Goals

This course will enable students to apply the academic knowledge gained from the entrepreneurship courses currently offered in finance, marketing, business plans, global and general entrepreneurship to developing their own business. Upon successful completion of this course, students will be able to:

  1. Evaluate the attractiveness and viability of a new venture idea they are currently pursuing
  2. Gain an understanding of the key development processes in the overall startup process:
    • Product development
    • Customer development
    • Business model development
    • Financing and revenue development
    • Administrative and org structure design and team development
  3. Gain experience pursuing simultaneous development processes for their new venture ideas
  4. Finish the course with an action plan for pursuing their business idea after the course has completed.

Course Requirements and Assignments

It is expected that students will spend a minimum of ten hours per week on their course project, including preparing for class, participating in course activities, completing assignments, and so on.

The course will be evaluated and graded on the basis of intermediate and final deliverables summarizing the customer development and business model work completed, and the academic, practical, and personal learning from it. Contributing to the development of other students’ businesses is also a critical element of the course.

Since we are preparing you to be successful in the business world, this class will be conducted in accordance with good professional behavior. You will be expected to arrive in class on time and be prepared to participate in class discussions and ask questions to our guest speakers and student presenters. Since this course is a simulation of real-world entrepreneurship, your presentations will be critiqued in front of your peers. You will also be expected to challenge yourselves and your peers.

SBT, Summer 2017, Course Schedule

This schedule is subject to change with changes posted on Canvas.
*Students will present their findings and updates on Fridays*

Course Schedule

Day Date Topics, Readings, Assignments, Deadlines
1 7/10 Course overview, purpose, and methods. Idea workshop. What is entrepreneurship & course deliverables
2 7/11 Business model canvas and customer development. Team formation, idea refinement, method of doing market research.
3 7/12 Business Model Hypotheses for Idea validation.
4 7/13

Value proposition, customer segment (who/problem) hypotheses, and customer interview preparation.


Watch (2 mins. Video) Maurya, Ch. 6.

Look at the following classes from Lean Launchpad:
5 7/14 (Friday) Watch :
  • Students will share updates on customer interviews.
  • What worked, what didn't, what did you learn? Mentor mixer.
Presentation to Mentors: Each team will give a 5-minute elevator pitch going over the Idea Summary (problem, solution, what is unique, and why you are doing this).
6 7/17 (Monday) Business Models, Positioning your product & understand the competitors
7 7/18 Pricing and costing Product development Anatomy of a financial model
8 7/19 Customers, sales channels, selling for success.
9 7/20 Teams formation. How do you find co-founder, who gets what?
10 7/21 (Friday) Team presentations. What did you learn about the customer, product and the opportunity, how will you position your product in the market? How will you make money?
11 7/24 (Monday) Startup funding Sources of funding and how the process works
12 7/25 Go-to-Market strategy, marketing (inbound, out-bound ), awareness creation
13 7/26 Product launch (Naming, packaging, launching, pricing) – online marketing
14 7/27 Partnerships, working with eco-system partners
15 7/28 (Friday) Go to market plans presentation, all teams will present their progress and make a 7-8 minute presentation on progress about launching the product
16 7/31 (Monday) Legal entities, setting up a company, patents and trade markets (Guest Speaker)
17 8/1 Presenting to investors, who are these investors and how do the work (Guest speaker)
18 8/2 Pitch practice and fine tune business plans – mentoring sessions
19 8/3 Stories from entrepreneurs, dealing with failure and success (Guest speakers), role of accelerators & crowd-funding (Guest speakers)
20 8/4 (Friday) Final pitches & demo day (With a panel of investors)