Developing Business Skills in High School Students Using Project Activities
Keywords:business games, target programme, specialized course, lecture course, self-development, training sessions, educational situations, education of pupils.
The most important requirement for today’s general education is the cultivation of humane and tolerant personality of the information society with well-developed business skills, which will allow him or her to successfully integrate into the complex social environment and act not only as a consumer but also as a producer, executive, leader, who can perform various social roles and determine the effectiveness and quality of his or her activities. The research aims to theoretically justify and experimentally verify the methodology for developing business skills in high school students using project activities. General education schools served as experimental facilities. The analysis of the experiment’s results took into account the number of group participants, as well as sampling representativeness (225 high school students aged between 14 and 17 in each group experimental and control). High school students’ understanding of the need for well-developed business skills is enhanced due to such forms and methods as reading biographies of prominent businessmen from all over the world; role-playing situations; meetings with people who have succeeded in economic, entrepreneurial, pedagogical and other fields; visits to companies, enterprises, cultural and scientific institutions; certain business games (“How can one live within one’s means?”, “Starting a business”, “Business communication”, “Manager’s working week”), conversations on such topics as “Is it difficult to be a businessman?”, “How can one succeed in learning?”, “Tell me about myself”; the “this is my opinion” student platform; participation in the youth forum of student organizations, an insight into business sites. The following diagnostic methods were used to identify the development level of certain business skills: the method called “Determining a self-focus” needed to identify business focus; the method called “Striving for achievements” needed to identify a striving for success; relevant tasks used to identify the level of key competencies; questionnaires about creativity; the communication and organization skills methodology needed to assess respective skills; methods for studying the level of subjective locus of control needed to assess responsibility; methods for identifying risk preparedness; the scale of reactive (situational) and personal anxiety needed to identify the level of self-control; the tolerance index questionnaire. The obtained results show that the number of high school students with a high level of business skills has increased by 12.8% in EG and only by 1.3 in CG. The number of high school students with an average level of business skills has increased by 3.8% in EG and by 0.6 in CG. Therefore, the comparison of EG and CG results proves the effectiveness of the proposed methodology for developing business skills in high school students using project activities.
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