Search results

1 – 10 of over 69000
To view the access options for this content please click here
Book part
Publication date: 9 May 2018

Katy Vigurs, Steven Jones, Julia Everitt and Diane Harris

This chapter draws on findings from a comparative, qualitative research project investigating the decision-making of different groups of English higher education students…

Abstract

This chapter draws on findings from a comparative, qualitative research project investigating the decision-making of different groups of English higher education students in central England as they graduated from a Russell group university (46 interviewees) and a Post-92 university (28 interviewees). Half of the students graduated in 2014 (lower tuition fees regime) and the other half graduated in 2015 (higher tuition fees regime). The students interviewed were sampled by socio-economic background, gender, degree subject/discipline and secondary school type. Semi-structured interviews were used to explore students’ future plans and perceptions of their future job prospects. Despite higher debt levels, the 2015 sample of Russell Group graduates from lower socio-economic backgrounds had a positive view of their labour market prospects and a high proportion had achieved either a graduate job or a place on a postgraduate course prior to graduation. This group had saved money whilst studying. The 2015 sample of Post-1992 University graduates (from both lower and average socio-economic backgrounds) were worried about their level of debt, future finances and labour market prospects. This chapter raises questions about whether a fairer university finance system, involving lower levels of debt for graduates from less advantaged backgrounds, might avoid some graduates’ transitions to adulthood being so strongly influenced by financial anxieties.

Details

Higher Education Funding and Access in International Perspective
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78754-651-6

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 3 September 2021

William E. Donald, Melanie J. Ashleigh and Yehuda Baruch

The purpose of this study is to understand how universities and organizations have responded to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in terms of preparing university…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to understand how universities and organizations have responded to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic in terms of preparing university students and recent graduates to enter the global labor market, using the accounting, banking and finance sector as a case study. The two research questions are (1) How can university career services and organizations work individually and collaboratively to best develop early career talent following the COVID-19 pandemic? (2) What are the challenges that university career services and organizations face when working individually or collaboratively to develop early career talent following the COVID-19 pandemic?

Design/methodology/approach

The data for thematic analysis comes from 36 semi-structured interviews with career advisors (CAs) (n = 19) and graduate recruiters (GRs) (n = 17).

Findings

This study offers some of the first findings on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, helping to ensure that organizational behavior and career theory literature reflect the dramatically changing landscape in the university-to-work transition.

Originality/value

Theoretically, our contribution comes from applying a framework of the career construction theory (CTT) within the context of a career ecosystem to understand the views of the intermediary, meso-level actors, which, to date, have lacked representation within career literature. Practically, we provide an insightful bridge between universities and organizations, offering opportunities for greater collaboration, and enhanced outcomes for all stakeholders.

Details

Personnel Review, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0048-3486

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 12 August 2021

Celestin Mayombe

The unemployment rate among disadvantaged youths (aged 15–34 years) in large parts of Africa, Asia and Latin America has become a global concern. The concern in this…

Abstract

Purpose

The unemployment rate among disadvantaged youths (aged 15–34 years) in large parts of Africa, Asia and Latin America has become a global concern. The concern in this article is that most WIL programmes could not facilitate a smooth WIL-to-work transition. The purpose of the article is to examine the roles of partner stakeholders in the features of an innovative WIL model influencing the labour market entry of the disadvantaged youths.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative approach was suitable for examining the features of an innovative WIL model. Semi-structured interviews were used to collect data from seven managers of different firms and institutions, and ten trainees to examine the roles of partner stakeholders in the features of an innovative WIL model influencing the labour market entry of disadvantaged youths.

Findings

The main findings reveal that local businesses and enterprises played important roles in participating in the design of the WIL curriculum, providing adequate mentorship for work experience and micro-placement to the trainees. Based on the findings, the author concludes that the partnership with stakeholders as an innovative WIL model contributed to the employability of disadvantaged youths through the acquisition of work experience and work-readiness.

Practical implications

The implication of the findings is that the commitment of partner stakeholders ensures that WIL graduates continue to be employed. The commitment of partner stakeholders evident in this study is likely to continue creating better employment prospects for WIL graduates.

Originality/value

Though stakeholder partnerships are common in WIL programmes and TVET, the innovativeness of this model lies in the features of WIL programmes, the roles and commitment of stakeholders including the outcomes of the partnerships.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 10 August 2021

Josephine Sarpong-Nyantakyi, Patrick Osei-Poku and Eric Francis Eshun

Graduate unemployment is widely reported not only in Ghana but also across the globe. The purpose of this study is to examine the relevance of the HND Commercial Art…

Abstract

Purpose

Graduate unemployment is widely reported not only in Ghana but also across the globe. The purpose of this study is to examine the relevance of the HND Commercial Art Programme, Graphic Design (CAPGD) option, to the graphic art industry and to determine the work readiness of graduates of HND CAPGD at the world of work.

Design/methodology/approach

A qualitative, evaluative case study research design was adopted to examine the perspectives of stakeholders of CAPGD. It was a multiple case study, which involved faculty members, graduates and industry-based supervisors. The study was conducted using in-depth semi-structured interviews and focus group discussions to obtain in-depth interpretations and conclusions that reflected the perceptions of the stakeholders.

Findings

The qualitative results indicate that the existing curriculum, based on the old polytechnic educational system, does not provide adequate practical approach to teaching and learning processes. Hence the majority of graduates lack competencies to meet industry's expectations.

Research limitations/implications

The key limitation is lack of database on the HND Graphic Design graduates at Takoradi Technical University. This affected the data collection process as the HND Graphic Design graduate participants were not easily accessible, and, as such, much effort and risk were required to contact them. Considering the implication for education policy, the findings propose stakeholders' collaboration to ensure cross fertilization of ideas (Nwajiuba et al., 2020). Hence, a compilation of database could engender further study in this area and thus form the bases of a mixed method approach resulting in in-depth analysis for fresh insights into the study.

Originality/value

The findings provide unique insights into work readiness of Commercial Art graduates, specifically in Ghana, as it seeks to bridge a gap in literature.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 29 August 2021

Thuraya Khalifa Al Riyami

The purpose of this study is to explore employers’ views on the current English communication skills of higher education institutions (HEIs) graduates and to identify the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this study is to explore employers’ views on the current English communication skills of higher education institutions (HEIs) graduates and to identify the workplace communication challenges encountered by graduates of these institutions. To achieve this, the study has been conducted using a mixed-method design using quantitative (questionnaire) and qualitative (semi-structured interview) methods to present a holistic picture. The number of the participants was 50 for the questionnaire and 15 for the interview. Descriptive statistics were used for the quantitative data and thematic analysis was used for the qualitative data. The study revealed that Omani graduates have low English proficiency and are capable of using the language to perform low order thinking. They are not capable of using the language for high-order thinking such as summarising, synthesising and evaluating. Also, the study reveals that Omani graduates encounter many difficulties when using the language to support their arguments and conduct research. The study concludes with the presentation of a recommendation to develop students’ English communication skills related to changing the curriculum, establishing an appropriate infrastructure, improving teaching practices and establishing policies that ensure graduates’ capabilities to use English in the workplace.

Design/methodology/approach

The study has been carried out using a mixed-methods approach which involves “a mixture of qualitative and quantitative approaches” (Creswell & Plano Clark, 2007, p. 5), to get a better understanding of the job market’s perspectives of graduates’ English communication skills. In the first phase of the study, a questionnaire was distributed to 50 employers in different government and private sectors. The questionnaire was comprising three parts. The first part included general questions on background, such as the type of organisation, qualifications required in the organisation and a general view of the English communication skills of graduates. The second part included a rating scale in which participants responded using a five-point Likert scale (from “totally agree” to “totally disagree”) to 17 statements that focussed on the linguistic skills of graduates. The third part also consisted of 23 items with a five-point Likert scale for responses ranging from “totally agree” to “totally disagree”. The 23 items focussed on the professional communication skills of Omani graduates. The items of the questionnaire were inspired by the pertinent literature and the questions of the study. In the second phase of the study, semi-structured interviews were conducted with 15 employers to get clarification on some of the issues that were raised in the questionnaire and get the employers’ opinions about how to improve the communication skills of Omani graduates and what initiatives HEIs can take to achieve that. These 15 participants worked in different public and private sectors, such as an oil and gas company, the Ministry of Health, the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Manpower, banks, an electricity company, a telecommunication company, an insurance company and a construction company.

Findings

The findings of this study reveal that Omani graduates generally lack English communication skills. These findings overlap other research conducted in Oman (Al-Issa & Al-Blushi, 2011; Al-Mahrooqi, 2012; Tanveer, 2013). This study also shows that Omani graduates are capable of using the language to fulfil lower-order thinking, but they lack the ability to use the language for high-order thinking such as summarising, synthesising and solving problems. The study also reveals that Omani graduates are not capable of writing reports or research proposals. Regarding the employers? perceptions of graduates? English professional skills, the findings reveal that Omani graduates are not capable of interpreting clients? needs. They also lack writing skills and verbal negotiation communication skills. They are also unable to resolve conflicts or disagreements. The findings reveal that Omani graduates encounter many challenges in the workplace, including low proficiency in English, lack of research skills and persuasive skills and inappropriate use of language during meetings and events.

Research limitations/implications

The research has limited participants.

Practical implications

Based on the results of this study, the following recommendations are drawn: HEIs should foster a relationship with the job market through continuous meetings to seek their feedback on English courses so that they can improve them to cater to specific job requirements. HEIs should offer a special course on communication skills, in which learning becomes meaningful and contextualised. The curriculum must include sample workplace scenarios that enable students to use the appropriate language for different situations. HEIs should enhance English for Specific Purposes (ESP) support courses to equip students with the necessary language for their specialisations. HEIs must activate the role of a Career and Employment Centre to prepare students for their future jobs by offering special courses on how to react in interviews, construct a CV and behave in the workplace. HEIs should get rid of the „one size fits all? Approach and attempt to cater to students? Needs in their future careers.

Originality/value

In recent decades, the higher education system in Oman has achieved substantial growth in terms of quantity, including the number of institutions, enrolled students, hired teachers and specialisation diversities. This expanding growth of HEIs corresponds to the necessity of qualifying Omani citizens who are capable of participating in ongoing development in Oman. Every year, hundreds of Omani students join HEIs to continue their first degrees, where English is used as a medium of instruction. These students aim to develop their English and obtain professional skills and knowledge which will enable them to be competent in a market economy, as English is considered the gatekeeper to finding jobs and accessing technology and modernity (Al-Issa, 2002; Al-Jadidi, 2009; Al-Jardani, 2011). However, there is a lively discussion about the quality of graduates of these HEIs, including their English communication skills (Al-Issa & Al-Bulushi, 2011; Al-Mahrooqi, 2012; Tanveer, 2013). For instance, Al-Mahrooqi and Tuzlukovap (2014) state that “higher education students continue to graduate with very weak oral and written communication skills, thus making them unfit for employment in many types of jobs” (p. 473).

Details

Learning and Teaching in Higher Education: Gulf Perspectives, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN:

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 29 June 2021

Nadine Nabulsi, Beverley McNally and Grace Khoury

This research paper seeks to identify multiple stakeholder perceptions relating to the level of graduateness of a group of business school graduates in Palestine.

Abstract

Purpose

This research paper seeks to identify multiple stakeholder perceptions relating to the level of graduateness of a group of business school graduates in Palestine.

Design/methodology/approach

An exploratory mixed method approach was employed. Survey data provided the quantitative information that was analysed using statistical package for the social sciences (SPSS). Interviews of 1.5–2 h duration were conducted to gather the qualitative data. The study utilised an inductive thematic approach to analyse these data.

Findings

Employers were resolute in the view that despite the high level of youth unemployment in Palestine, they still had difficulty in sourcing suitably qualified graduates. Collaboration between employers and higher education providers is not of a level that supports the development of graduateness. The identified key skill shortages occurred in the soft skills area, for example, written and verbal communication, language and problem-solving skills, negotiation and conflict resolution.

Research limitations/implications

As an exploratory research study, there are opportunities for future research investigating more deeply the themes identified and the success or otherwise of the recommended initiatives.

Practical implications

This study has implications for both educationalists and policymakers, regarding the prioritisation of development funding and of policies and practices aimed at improving youth employment. There are implications for all stakeholders with regard to collaboration in curriculum development, provision of education, and training and development programmes targeting young people to ensure that they are work ready.

Originality/value

This paper is one of the first to examine the skills gap between business schools' graduates and employment in Palestine.

Details

Education + Training, vol. 63 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 1 July 2021

Peggy M.L. Ng, Jason K. Y. Chan, Tai Ming Wut, Man Fung Lo and Irene Szeto

The purpose of this paper is to develop a conceptual model to examine key employability skills that match workplace requirements and foster employability.

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to develop a conceptual model to examine key employability skills that match workplace requirements and foster employability.

Design/methodology/approach

This research comprises a cross-sectional study from self-financing institutions in Hong Kong. The current study adopted structural equation modeling to examine key employability skills that match workplace requirements and foster employability.

Findings

Based on the empirical findings, the acquired employability skills of young graduates are entrepreneurship, professional development, work with others, self-management, communication and problem solving. Moreover, higher education institutions should work closely with industry stakeholders to get employers engaged with the work-integrating learning (WIL) programs and subsequently equip young graduates for better employability opportunities. In connection with employer engagement, employability skills of communication, problem solving and self-management would be improved. Furthermore, entrepreneurship and problem-solving skills could further be developed for young graduating students working in SME organizations during WIL.

Originality/value

As a notable gap exists in the current literature to examine young graduates' key employability skills in the context and content of Hong Kong self-financing tertiary education, this research explores key employability skills of self-financed young graduates and the relative importance of employability skills across company size using a quantitative approach.

Details

Education + Training, vol. 63 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 9 July 2021

Denise Jackson and Ian Li

There are ongoing concerns regarding university degree credentials leading to graduate-level employment. Tracking graduate underemployment is complicated by inconsistent…

Abstract

Purpose

There are ongoing concerns regarding university degree credentials leading to graduate-level employment. Tracking graduate underemployment is complicated by inconsistent measures and tendencies to report on outcomes soon after graduation. Our study explored transition into graduate-level work beyond the short-term, examining how determining factors change over time.

Design/methodology/approach

We considered time-based underemployment (graduates are working less hours than desired) and overqualification (skills in employment not matching education level/type) perspectives. We used a national data set for 41,671 graduates of Australian universities in 2016 and 2017, surveyed at four months and three years' post-graduation, to explore determining factors in the short and medium-term. Descriptive statistical techniques and binary logistic regression were used to address our research aims.

Findings

Graduates' medium-term employment states were generally positive with reduced unemployment and increased full-time job attainment. Importantly, most graduates that were initially underemployed transited to full-time work at three years post-graduation. However, around one-fifth of graduates were overqualified in the medium-term. While there was some evidence of the initially qualified transitioning to matched employment, supporting career mobility theory, over one-third remaining overqualified. Skills, personal characteristics and degree-related factors each influenced initial overqualification, while discipline was more important in the medium-term.

Originality/value

Our study explores both time-based underemployment and overqualification, and over time, builds on earlier work. Given the longer-term, negative effects of mismatch on graduates' career and wellbeing, findings highlight the need for career learning strategies to manage underemployment and consideration of future labour market policy for tertiary graduates.

Details

International Journal of Manpower, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 7 July 2021

Michael Tomlinson, Hazel McCafferty, Andy Port, Nick Maguire, Alexandra E. Zabelski, Andreea Butnaru, Megan Charles and Sarah Kirby

This article provides empirical validation of the Graduate Capital Model, adopted at a UK Russell Group University as a tool to analyse and support the career preparedness…

Abstract

Purpose

This article provides empirical validation of the Graduate Capital Model, adopted at a UK Russell Group University as a tool to analyse and support the career preparedness of both undergraduates and postgraduate students. An overview of employability capitals and how the development of these will potentially result in positive employment outcomes is explored. We describe the development of a psychometric tool “the Graduate Capital Scale” that seeks to operationalize these capitals. We then draw on data to establish the factor structure, reliability and validity of the tool.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper introduces a new psychometric instrument, called the “Graduate Capital Scale”; this self-reflective tool aligns closely with the five capitals within the Graduate Capital Model (Tomlinson, 2017) and has been designed for higher education students to self-assess their confidence in transitioning to the graduate labour market.

Findings

Based on a sample of 1,501 students across data collection waves, the findings from the psychometric scale show good factor reliability and validity for the constructs central to the overarching Graduate Capital Model. Within each of the component of the model, high factors loading emerged for a range of scale items, including subject-related skills, social networking, perceived job market fit and engagement with extra-curricula activities. Few gender differences emerged across the constructs.

Research limitations/implications

The research was confined to a specific English university comprised of mainly academically high-achieving and higher socio-economic students. However, there is significant scope for the model and related scale tool to be applied to diverse student groups given its wholistic nature.

Practical implications

The scale has considerable potential to be incorporated into careers practices and also embedded into course programmes as it aligns with a range of related learning outcomes. There is significant scope for this approach to complement a range of pedagogical and practical career interventions, including: self-reflective tools within tutorials; measures of learning gain for specific interventions such as careers coaching and mentoring; and as a personal reflective tool in careers guidance.

Social implications

The approach developed through this employability tool has scope to be used for diverse graduate groups, including those with lower levels of career confidence, preparedness and insight and including those from lower socio-economic backgrounds.

Originality/value

This paper has introduced and demonstrated the validity of a practical careers and employability development tool that has significant practical applicability for students, graduates and practitioners. Moreover, this scale supports a pre-existing conceptually driven model and has demonstrated a clear alignment between theory and practice in the area of graduate employability.

Details

Journal of Applied Research in Higher Education, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2050-7003

Keywords

To view the access options for this content please click here
Article
Publication date: 27 July 2021

Nirmal Kumar Mandal and Francis Robert Edwards

As part of the Co-Operative Education Program (CEP) under study, a Work-integrated Learning (WIL) student engagement framework is presented. The framework focusses on the…

Abstract

Purpose

As part of the Co-Operative Education Program (CEP) under study, a Work-integrated Learning (WIL) student engagement framework is presented. The framework focusses on the effectiveness of the WIL program with real-world assessment tasks to prepare students for graduate employment. In order to evaluate the level at which the engineering graduates are work-ready, an analysis of qualitative and quantitative survey data from CQU students, employers and data from other sources was undertaken. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

WIL is an effective pedagogical strategy employed in engineering curriculum to engage students with workplace partners and engineering practices. However, little is known about the problems exist in the WIL processes including insufficient resources and support for mentoring students. On overcoming the problems, an effective collaboration between students, universities and engineering workplaces provides an enhanced engagement experience and enables students’ work-ready skills. Central Queensland University (CQU)’s Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) and Diploma of Professional Practice (Co-op) students participate in two 6-month WIL placements over the course of their university studies.

Findings

To identify the impact of the co-operative education model on graduate outcomes, an analysis of student assessment data from 2016 to 2018 showed that the student employability indicators were consistently above the national average of graduate engineering students. All areas such as knowledge base, engineering ability and professional attributes, students’ performance were rated at or above the average of a graduate engineer by employers.

Originality/value

As part of practice assessment, engineering workplace employers provide an evaluation of students’ performance against the Engineers Australia (EA) Stage 1 Competency Standard for Professional Engineers, involving sixteen mandatory elements in the areas of knowledge and skill base, engineering application ability, and professional and personal attributes.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

Keywords

1 – 10 of over 69000