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E145 Policies

Students will be evaluated based on attendance and contribution to in-class discussions and sections, as well as timely completion of assigned readings and email assignments.  Think of this as an opportunity to stretch yourself and learn skills like teamwork, public speaking, persuasive writing, and defending your ideas, as well as the fundamentals of the entrepreneurial process.  The teaching team will endeavor to create a supportive environment, where there is no penalty for taking a definite stance and expressing new ideas.

Administrative Information

·         There are only ten weeks in this course, barely the minimum necessary to cover the essentials of this topic. If you anticipate missing more than one class, please consider not taking the course. More than one unexcused absence causes a decrease in your course grade.

·         If you expect to miss a class, please let the teaching assistants know ahead of time via email to e145-staff@lists.stanford.edu. It will be your responsibility to find out from your classmates or the teaching assistants what material was covered, what additional assignments were made, and to obtain any handouts you may have missed. Handouts will be available online.

·         Important E145 assignments, announcements, and information will be posted on the course web site.  Read all course web pages thoroughly and often, and never come to class without reading that day's online agenda.

·         Given the importance of class participation and its grading, we will do our best to get to know you quickly. 

·         Feel free to discuss the course and your learning progress with the instructors at any time. We are always happy to discuss items of interest. The teaching assistants are also available for questions you have about any issue.  See the office hour times and locations.

·         Given the pace of this course, we will do all that we can to use class time effectively and ask you to do the same. This includes starting and ending on time. The teaching assistants will take attendance in the first five minutes of the class and we will end each class on time.

·         Our distinguished guest instructors and speakers are aggressive, successful, and articulate. Interrupt and ask them questions at any time. They will be forewarned. They will display an earnest desire to help you understand entrepreneurship.


Class Sessions

Attendance is mandatory at all sessions. Each person is allowed two unexcused absences for this quarter, no questions asked. Class starts promptly at 9 AM. From October 27 forward, if a person is more than 5 minutes late, you will be counted as absent. For the simulation of Climbing Mt. Everest, a late arrival means you miss the plane to Everest Base camp, you may not enter class if you are late. For all other classes, if you are late to class the door will not be locked. You may quietly enter the class, but if you are more than 5 minutes late you are counted as absent. If you have a significant event or situation on the personal side, such as being sick yourself, helping a family member deal with a serious illness, getting married, being a groomsman or bridesmaid in a wedding party, or grieving the death of a close friend or member of your family, you can request an excused absence. Job interviews will generally not count as an excused absence. 


Students will be evaluated on their participation in classroom discussions, whether about the case under consideration or about the topic of the lecture.  The grading of classroom participation is difficult because of an element of subjectivity not present in grading written assignments. Nevertheless, it is a vital part of the course. Most students feel comfortable in speaking up with thoughtful comments and questions, but some do not, and we wish to be fair to everyone. We will not be grading on "air time", but rather on the quality of the question or comment.  Participating in classroom discussions, freely and without fear, is strongly urged.  No opinion is held in disregard, and only through active discussion can we arrive at some consensus of reasonable action. It is never our intention to embarrass anyone -- if you are not prepared, let one of us know before class and we will not call on you. Being punctual, present and prepared for our class sessions is an important part of contributing to the E 145 learning community. Thanks for your commitment to be an active contributor to the E 145 class discussions.


All assigned readings are to be completed before the session -- see the E145 Course Calendar for a complete list.  Each required reading has been specifically chosen to provide a certain insight or skill; thus, every assignment is mandatory.  Though there is no way to verify that students have read the material before class, all E145 lectures, study questions, assignments, and exams assume a fundamental understanding of many concepts provided by the readings.  Consequently, failure to keep up with the assignments will have an adverse effect on a student's grade.


Highlights denote the sections that convey core material for the course. When working on study questions and exams, these sections often provide the frameworks from which to begin analysis. As such, these sections are worthy of a second (or more comprehensive initial) read. Note that required readings not noted as highlights are extremely important for the course and students will be held accountable for material not included in the highlight sections.


Recommended Readings


Supplementary readings are suggested that provide additional depth and richness for the topics considered each day. These readings are not required. While we hope that you will return to these readings as time permits, you are not expected to have completed the readings prior to class. As your time permits, we highly recommend skimming the recommended readings - an investment that we believe can be very rewarding. The list of recommended books may be found here.

Study Questions

You are encouraged to discuss each session in advance with your fellow students. In fact, you are required to form a study group consisting of four other students and then meet regularly before each class.  These study groups will be formed in the second class session.  The study questions are helpful preparation aids for each case while meeting with your study partners.  Use the study questions for each session to prepare for class; the answers are not to be included in the e-mail assignment, although they may be used to focus and guide your homework discussion.

Online Assignments

Unless stated otherwise, assignments are to be submitted via e-mail to e145-homework@lists.stanford.edu by 9 am the day of the session. We will accept assignments up until class time with some penalty. Please read the Case Analysis Guidelines for more specific information regarding case assignments.


Format your header in the following way:


E145: Case Number, Case Name, Team Name
          i.e. E145: Case 1, AIR, The Randys


Discussion Board

Students are encouraged to post insights and articles related to course discussion topics to the class email alias: e145-class@lists.stanford.edu. The discussion forum will be read by the teaching team, and contributions will contribute to the individual participation grade.


Workshops will be held on selected Mondays.  Facilitated by the E145 TAs, they will involve a workshop-formatted overview of key course concepts.  You are responsible for the material covered at the workshops.

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