This work wants to specify preliminary data of the design process of an instrument adapted to a Spanish population based on different questionnaires to evaluate the attributes of entrepreneurial skills of university students, and to contribute a valid and reliable measure that serves as a reference for effective intervention programs in the university environment, and for the development of employability. The instrument provides students with the possibility of discovering their strengths and opportunities related to the sub-competences evaluated: the identification of opportunities, the development of innovative solutions, the ability to learn from failure, and their awareness of their entrepreneurship. An initial content validity study was carried out through the trial of 13 experts, all of them university professors expert of the subject, which determined the development of the questionnaire that was subsequently tested on a pilot sample of 350 students. It concludes to the suitability and usefulness of the instrument, and discusses the importance of the intervention for the development of entrepreneurial competence in the University.
One of the recipes that are proposed in response to an improvement in the strategies to create a labor engine within our society is to create entrepreneurs and thus foster positive attitudes towards entrepreneurship through university education that encourages develop entrepreneurial skills in their students.
Entrepreneurship education has experienced a great boost in recent years, reaching in 2013 among the priorities of different member states of the European Union (EU), which have promoted programs and activities in this regard (Oliver, Galiana and Gutiérrez- Benet, 2016).
Entrepreneurship is one of the main drivers of innovation, competitiveness, and economic and social development in a country (De la Torre et al., 2015). Relatively recent studies (Hatten, 1993; Laukkanen, 2000, Martínez Méndez, 2007; Uribe Toril, De Pablo Valenciano and Bonilla Martínez, 2013, among others) defend that the entrepreneurial spirit is teachable, and point out the importance of including it in classrooms ( Caballero- García, Jiménez Martínez and Guillén Tortajada, 2019).
However, there is no standard definition of entrepreneurship, as Paños Castro (2017) maintains, “entrepreneurship does not only refer to the creation of companies and businesses” (p. 33), and that is that the term entrepreneurship is a broad concept, polysemic and elusive.
An analysis of the concept allows us to affirm that entrepreneurial competence, together with the personality traits of an entrepreneur, are the most worked and investigated aspects (Caballero-García, Guillén-Tortajada and Jiménez-Martínez, 2017b).
For these purposes, this competence is understood as a willingness to solve, in an environment of scarce means, the problems arising from the incessant increase in social needs for goods and services. It is conceived as a specific ability to offer unknown responses in an environment in which economic needs vary and increase (Núñez-Ladevéze, 2017).
Alcaraz-Rodriguez, Álvarez and Villasana (2014) describe the entrepreneur as: «A person who possesses the skills to create and launch a project, using his or her skills to optimize resources and solve problems in an innovative way, and also taking advantage of areas of opportunity that others have not identified, as well as the ability to work perseveringly to achieve their goals ”(p. 183).
Like Fiet (2001), we consider that “it is convenient to consider research on entrepreneurship and teaching to make appropriate decisions” (p. 22). Entrepreneurial training is not only important, but urgent for our society at all levels.
That is why this article addresses the measurement of entrepreneurial skills through an instrument, redesigned and adapted, based on the initial questionnaire by Dr. Rafael Alcaraz (2011), which allows university institutions to identify personal attributes associated with the entrepreneur to seek the promotion and development of university entrepreneurs. It aims to contribute to this work by presenting the process of designing a self-prepared questionnaire and checking its reliability.