This course should take approximately 30 hours to study, but it has been carefully designed so you can choose your own pace of learning. The materials are designed for study at your computer screen (but sections can be printed out to read elsewhere) in short periods – half-an-hour now and then wherever you are.
While it has been designed so that you can study it on your own, as an Open Educational Resource (OER), you can also download content and reuse, revise, or remix it for use in other contexts. We have tried to ensure that the content is as flexible and adaptable as possible. This means it should be easy to use in face-to-face contexts with, for example, a group of other entrepreneurs or community members (community enterprise) as well as by yourself, alone, online. The Resources section at the end of the course contains templates used in the course to download.
We have set up a Twitter account,. You can use this to find up to date information about the changes in the rural entrepreneurial landscape.
The course map below indicates the sections of the course together with guidance on how long each section might take, enabling you to plan your study time. The learning outcomes describe what you can expect to have learned at the end of your study.
As you progress through this course you will start to complete a plan, by filling in the Business Plan Progress Review (BPPR). Although the BPPR is too brief to be considered a full business plan, it will help you review the key elements of your business idea and will be extremely helpful as a summary document. The BPPR is available to download in the Resources section.
As you launch your new business idea – and if you intend to secure finance for your business – you will need a business plan with more detail than this course provides, so it is a good idea to work on two versions of the plan as you progress through the course.