GRA 3113 Start-Up Development

GRA 3113 Start-Up Development

Course code: 
GRA 3113
Strategy and Entrepreneurship
Course coordinator: 
Nils-Otto Ørjasæter
Course name in Norwegian: 
Start-Up Development
Product category: 
MSc in Entrepreneurship and Innovation
2023 Autumn
Active status: 
Level of study: 
Teaching language: 
Course type: 
One semester

In this course the students will learn the actual process of starting and growing a new business. Knowledge and tools related to the entrepreneurial process, including leadership, market segmentation, business modelling and funding, are central to the successful development of profitable new companies. This course will provide the students with models and tools for developing start-up companies, as well as practical experience in starting a company and developing a convincing business plan. Methods related to the “Disciplined Entrepreneurship” approach will be central. Through the course, students may prepare an application to the STUD-ENT through the Norwegian Research Council, and a presentation / pitch.

An active learning form is introduced through student presentations, problem solving, discussions, practical exercises including interviews with end users, customers and key partners. The course is run in a combination of seminars and counselling.

Learning outcomes - Knowledge

After finishing the course, the students will:

  • have a basis for advanced studies in the field
  • have deep knowledge about business development in start-up companies
  • have a framework for starting and scaling new companies
  • have knowledge to analyze complex problems in start-up companies
  • have knowledge of how to get early stage funding for their start-up
Learning outcomes - Skills

The students will obtain the skills for:

  • starting and scaling a new venture
  • developing a convincing business plan
  • designing, testing, implementing and reflecting upon the company's business model
  • reflecting upon themselves as entrepreneurs, team members and leaders
  • presenting and communicating business ideas in an effective and convincing manner
General Competence
  • The students will reflect upon the process from starting to scaling a young company
  • The students will be able to analyze customer and end-user insight and develop a realistic plan for implementation
Course content
  • Motivation, commitment and team
  • Market segmentation and "Beachhead" market
  • Product Specification and Value Proposition
  • Core and Competitive Position
  • Customers Decision-Making
  • Process of Acquiring Paying Customers
  • Business Model
  • Pricing Framework
  • Minimum Viable Business Product (MVBP)
  • Developing a Product Plan
  • Early stage funding
  • Entrepreneurial leadership and coaching
Teaching and learning activities

At the beginning of the course, students are required to submit a business idea, that is an idea of a need that is currently not met in a satisfactory manner and a way of addressing that need. This can either be the student's own idea, or a business idea under development by one of the other students. Pursuing this idea through a “Disciplined Entrepreneurship process” is a central teaching technique. Students are strongly encouraged to consider ideas even prior to the beginning of the course in order to get full effect of the teaching.

The teaching is structured with a high degree of interactivity - through presentations, discussions, exercises, group work and interviews with external.

Requirements in the course will be the following:

  • Personal weekly log based on the learning from the implementation of the steps from the scale-up methodology.
  • Answers to the 24 steps from the scale-up methodology.

It is the student’s own responsibility to obtain any information provided in class that is not included on it'slearning or the text book.

Software tools
No specified computer-based tools are required.
Additional information

Please note that while attendance is not compulsory in all courses, it is the student’s own responsibility to obtain any information provided in class.

All parts of the assessment must be passed in order to get a grade in the course.

The examination for this course has been changed from autumn 2023. It is not possible to resit the old version of the examination.


All courses in the Masters programme will assume that students have fulfilled the admission requirements for the programme. In addition, courses in second, third and/or fourth semester can have specific prerequisites and will assume that students have followed normal study progression. For double degree and exchange students, please note that equivalent courses are accepted.


Deviations in teaching and exams may occur if external conditions or unforeseen events call for this.

Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Written submission
Group/Individual (1 - 3)
1 Semester(s)
Business plan.
The business plan must be based on the company they have worked on throughout the semester.
Exam code: 
GRA 31132
Grading scale: 
Examination when next scheduled course
Exam category: 
Form of assessment: 
Written submission
1 Semester(s)
The essay is an individual self-assessment (about 5 pages) that will reflect on learning during the semester.
Exam code: 
GRA 31133
Grading scale: 
Examination when next scheduled course
Type of Assessment: 
Ordinary examination
All exams must be passed to get a grade in this course.
Total weight: 
Student workload
12 Hour(s)
Seminar groups
24 Hour(s)
Prepare for teaching
140 Hour(s)
Group work / Assignments
50 Hour(s)
254 Hour(s)
Sum workload: 

A course of 1 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of 26-30 hours. Therefore acourse of 18 ECTS credit corresponds to a workload of at least 480 hours.