Due to the Corona virus education methods or examination can deviate. For the latest news please check the course page in Brightspace.


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Entrepreneurial Opportunities (minor Science Based Business)


Admission requirements

3rd year bachelor students


‘Life's too short to build something nobody wants’ Ash Maurya
This course teaches you how to turn ideas, visions, broad and sweeping goals into a company. Using recent insights in entrepreneurial and innovation driven organisations, the course will guide you in developing an enterprise ‘the start-up way’.
Why ‘developing an enterprise’? We are in favour of learning by doing, so we want to make this course very practical: with a team you will generate a business model for an enterprise that you might actually want to establish in real life. Creating a real company is not mandatory within this course, but it has been known to happen.
Why ‘the start-up way’? The definitions of what a start-up is (there are many) often contain texts like ‘planning to grow fast’, ‘innovative products/services’, ‘disrupt a market’. You need not develop an innovative, disruptive start-up within this course, but we do want to use the start-up way of working as it allows for iteration, experimentation and fast learning.
The course will be of interest to those who are considering establishing their own enterprise and to those that want to know more about the start-up approach in general.

Topics covered
1. Introduction to entrepreneurship and start-ups
2. Identifying market opportunities
3. Value Proposition design
4. Business models and revenue models
5. Pitching
6. Validation
7. Financials
8. Funding
9. Demand generation
10. Selling.

Course objectives

After this course you will be able to:

  • apply contemporary theories in entrepreneurship and innovation

  • appraise and use tools that are used for the process of innovation

  • define market opportunities

  • study a target market and identify a need or problem

  • develop and improve a value proposition

  • create a business model

  • develop a go-to-market strategy and describe the challenges in going to market

  • pitch your ideas with confidence

  • make a judgment as whether you would like to become an entrepreneur

  • reflect on teamwork and team roles

  • appreciate the effort and dedication needed to make a business succeed.


Please check the latest version of the schedule on the SBB website.

Lectures were originally scheduled on:
Date Time Date Time
November 9 9.15-11.00 November 25 11.15-13.00
November 11 11.15-13.00 November 30 9.15-11.00
November 16 9.15-11.00 December 2 11.15-13.00
November 18 11.15-13.00 December 7 9.15-11.00
November 23 9.15-11.00 December 9 11.15-13.00

Not all these timeslots will be used as we are using pre-recorded lectures.
Please block the following timeslots for the interactive sessions:
Date Time Date Time
November 11 11.15-13.00 November 25 11.15-13.00
November 16 9.15-11.00 November 30 9.15-11.00
November 18 11.15-13.00 December 2 11.15-13.00
November 23 9.15-11.00 December 7 9.15-11.00

Students need to have viewed the pre-recorded lectures and to have carried out the corresponding assignments before attending interactive sessions.

The meetings at PLNT will take place on the 4th of January and the 5th of January. As we are unable to receive all students at the same time we have created four timeslots. We will only be able to inform you in which time slot you are expected when the course has started. So for now fully block both dates in your agenda.

Please, for now, block the following timeslots for the PLNT meetings:
Date Time Date Time
January 4 8.30-12.30 13.00-17.00
January 5 8.30-12.30 13.00-17.00

At the start of the course, after the teams have been created, a schedule will be published informing you when your team is expected at PLNT. The other time slots can be unblocked in your agenda after receiving the schedule.
Contrary to earlier messages, there will be no exam. The PLNT meeting and the reflection paper replace the exam.
Retakes will take the form of oral online examinations. Scheduling will take place in January 2021.

Mode of instruction

During the course you will be working as a founders’ team of a start-up enterprise on tasks like:

  • Researching and defining a market opportunity

  • Creating a value proposition

  • Creating a business model

  • Creating pitches

  • Validating your assumptions about all the above topics.

These tasks are continuous, require parallel processing, require allocating different tasks to different team members. This implies a high level of interaction and collaboration in the team. Teams can use video conferencing tools like Microsoft Teams to discuss assignments and create deliverables.
The teams will be populated at random before the course starts. Teams will consist of 5 to 6 students. Teams are free to select any kind of market opportunity, we do however expect a strong relation with ‘science based business’.

The course itself consists of:

  • Pre-recorded lectures

  • Team assignments: the results of the team assignments are incorporated by the team in an enterprise model and in pitches (short and focussed presentations)

  • Individual assignments

  • A total of 8 interactive sessions. The interactive sessions are used to discuss pitches and provide feedback on pitches. Each team will submit two pitches during the course according to a schedule that will be published at the start of the course

  • A final ‘live’ event at PLNT Leiden (Langegracht 70) where teams will pitch their enterprise and receive feedback on both the pitch and their enterprise model.
    If, due to Covid-19 measures, we are unable to have the live meetings in PLNT, the live meetings will be replaced by virtual meetings at the same date and time.

Course Load

  • Studying pre-recorded lectures, dealing with the 10 topics mentioned in the course description

  • Carrying out the team assignments, dealing with creating an enterprise model and pitches

  • Creating and delivering two pitches together with the team

  • Carrying out the individual assignments

  • Providing feedback on pitches of other teams

  • Reflecting on lessons learned and submitting the lessons learned

  • Participating in the final event at PLNT where teams will receive feedback

  • For each individual student, submitting a reflection paper on how the student would deal with the feedback.

Assessment method

Students are graded on the following aspects:

  • Quality of feedback provided by each individual student to other teams (20 %)

  • Quality of pitches created by own team (20 %)

  • Quality of the created enterprise model with the own team (30 %)

  • Submitted Lessons Learned by each individual student (10 %)

  • Individual reflection paper (20 %), containing reflections on how to deal with the received feedback, providing arguments for this from theory and from the course.


During the course Brightspace will not be used.
Students that have registered will be invited to join a Microsoft Teams workspace. All course materials will be provided through the workspace. The workspace can also be used by the teams to discuss assignments, to upload and download team materials, to upload finished assignments, etc.

Reading list

  • Christensen, Clayton (1997) The Innovator’s dilemma. HBR Press

  • Ries, Eric (2011) The Lean Startup. Crown Books

  • Osterwalder, Alex (2010), Business Model Generation. John Wiley Publishers

  • Osterwalder, Alex (2014), Value Proposition Design. John Wiley Publishers

  • Fitzpatrick, Rob (2014), The Mom Test

  • Keeley, Larry (2013) Ten Types of Innovation. John Wiley Publishers

This is just part of the literature that will be used during the course. This list contains the ‘real’ books. The other parts of the reading/viewing list consist of videos to watch and articles to read on the Internet. Links to these articles and videos will be provided in the syllabus.
Reading the real books is optional for the course, so this list is just to show you some of the ‘classics’.


Students have to register for the course in uSis. Click here for instructions.

This course can only be followed as part of the SBB minor (15 or 30 ECTS).




  • Students are responsible for enrolling/unenrolling themselves for (partial) exams/retakes.

  • Students are responsible for enrolling themselves for (partial) exams/retakes.

  • The deadline for enrolling for an exam/retake is 10 calendar days before the exam/retake takes place (exam date - 10 = deadline enrolling date).

  • Students who do not enroll themselves for an exam/retake by the deadline are not allowed to take the exam/retake.

  • Students fail the course if any of the components that make up the final mark of the course is assessed below 5.0.

  • Partial grades will not be rounded. If partial grades will be communicated, it is possible partial grades are rounded, but unrounded partial grades will be used in the calculation of the final grade.

  • The final grade is expressed as a whole or half number between 1.0 and 10.0, including both limits. The result is not to be expressed as a number between 5.0 and 6.0.

  • If one of the components of the final mark constitutes a component that assesses attendance or class participation, students cannot take a retake for this component. Therefore, students fail the course if their mark for this component is less than 5.0.

  • It is not possible to do retakes for group assignments. Therefore, if students fail the group assignment component, they fail the course.

  • Students pass the course if the final mark is 6.0 or higher (5.49 will rounded down to a 5 and a 5.5 will be rounded up to a 6.0).

  • For courses, for which class participation is an assessment component, students may not be penalised for an absence if the student has a legitimate justification for this absence. The student must notify the program coordinator via email (info@sbb.leidenuniv.nl) of such an absence BEFORE the lecture, describing the reason for missing the lecture. If the student does not notify the program coordinator before the lecture, the student will be penalised. Students may be required to provide further documentation to substantiate their case, and class attendance requirements are only waived under exceptional circumstances such as illness.

  • Students who are entitled to more exam/retake time must report to info@sbb.leidenuniv.nl 10 days before the exam/retake takes place.