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Performance of building technology graduates in the construction industry in Ghana

J. Ayarkwa (Department of Building Technology, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana)
Ayirebi Dansoh (Department of Building Technology, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana)
E. Adinyira (Department of Building Technology, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana)
P. Amoah (Department of Building Technology, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana)

Education + Training

ISSN: 0040-0912

Article publication date: 16 August 2011

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to assess the perception of the Ghanaian construction industry of the performance of entry‐level building technology graduates. Also, other non‐technical skills or attributes expected from building technology graduates are to be compared with the actual proficiency of the graduates.

Design/methodology/approach

The findings in this paper are based on a series of interviews and structured questionnaire survey of randomly selected contractors and consultants in the Ghanaian construction industry.

Findings

The overall performance of the graduates was considered acceptable by the construction industry. However, much more needed to be done in “coordination” and “scheduling” of site activities by graduates who work as site managers, and in “coordination of site activities” and “issuance of site instructions” for those who work as project managers for contractors. There was a considerable gap between the expectations of the construction industry practitioners and the actual proficiency of building technology graduates in “initiative and creativity”, “practical building knowledge”, “ability to define and solve problems”, and other equally important attributes. The graduates, however, met the expectations of contractors in “computer literacy”, “communication skills”, and “interpersonal skills”, and consultants in “computer literacy” and “leadership capability”.

Social implications

The results of the study enable entry‐level graduates to realize their deficiencies for continual improvement, and the training institution to develop training curricula responsive to the needs of the industry.

Originality/value

Even though results from this study generally show a disparity in the expected and actual proficiency levels of building technology graduates, as frequently reported in the literature, it provides a new insight into this problem by providing evidence to the effect that the problem is only manifest in some specific non‐technical skill requirements.

Keywords

Citation

Ayarkwa, J., Dansoh, A., Adinyira, E. and Amoah, P. (2011), "Performance of building technology graduates in the construction industry in Ghana", Education + Training, Vol. 53 No. 6, pp. 531-545. https://doi.org/10.1108/00400911111159485

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited