The integration of identified employability skills into the Namibian vocational education and training curriculum

Naanda, Raimo Ndapewa (Stellenbosch : University of Stellenbosch, 2010-12)

Bibliography

Thesis (PhD (Curriculum Studies))--University of Stellenbosch, 2010.

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Since the advent of the 21st century the world has been experiencing rapid changes in knowledge, technology and information. These changes pose challenges to the providers of education and training in general and vocational education and training in particular. The impact of technological advancement and the nature of organisational changes in the workplace demand skills of an increasingly higher level – particularly skills in the areas of information technology, problem solving and communication. The problem identified in this study was that graduates from vocational training centres (VTCs) in Namibia did not have appropriate employability skills needed at the workplace, as indicated by Namibian employers. The aim of this study was to identify the types of employability skills considered important by employers at the workplace and to determine how such skills could be integrated into the vocational education and training curriculum in Namibia. A literature review conducted revealed that employers require workers with the following key, core or employability skills: communication, information technology, working with numbers, working with others, problem solving and improving one’s own learning and performance. The population for this study was 493 employers providing on-the-job training or employing vocational training centre graduates. A total of 244 out of the 493 employers responded. The population of the study represented the following occupational sectors: auto trades, building construction trades, metalwork trades and electrical engineering trades. Data for the study were collected through reviewing the literature on employability skills, a survey questionnaire to employers and face-to-face interviews conducted with selected employers during the research. The following questions were explored in the questionnaire and structured interviews: i) Which employability skills are important at the workplace? ii) Who is responsible for developing employability skills? iii) If it is the responsibility of vocational training centres to foster employability skills, at which educational level should employability skills education be introduced? iv) How should the acquisition of employability skills be promoted? v) How should employability skills be assessed? The study found that employers in Namibia considered employability skills such as teamwork, time management, a positive attitude, problem solving, planning, and coping with multiple tasks as the most important skills they required from vocational training centre graduates. Employers further indicated that employability skills could be developed at family/home settings as well as at school and vocational training centres and suggested that employability skills education be introduced from level 1 during the first year of training. It was also found that portfolios, observation and practical assessment were credible approaches for assessing employability skills and that this should be done in real-life contexts. Based on the conclusions arrived at in the study, it is recommended that a policy framework for employability skills be developed and implemented in the Namibian vocational education and training system. Specific recommendations are made regarding the following aspects: the type of employability skills; whose responsibility it is to develop these skills; at which level of training the development of employability skills should be implemented; how they could best be learned and how the learning of employability skills could be assessed.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Die snelle veranderinge op die gebied van kennis, tegnologie en inligting sedert die begin van die 21ste eeu bied groot uitdagings aan die verskaffers van onderwys en opleiding in die algemeen en beroepsonderwys en -opleiding in die besonder. Die uitwerking van tegnologiese vordering en die aard van organisatoriese veranderinge in die werkplek vereis groter hoërorde-vaardighede as vantevore – veral vaardighede op die gebied van inligtingstegnologie, probleemoplossing en kommunikasie. Die probleem wat in hierdie studie aan bod gekom het, was dat gegradueerdes van beroepsopleidingsentrums in Namibië nie oor voldoende indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede wat in die werkplek benodig word, beskik nie, soos aangedui deur Namibiese werknemers. Die doel van hierdie navorsing was om die soorte indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede wat werkgewers by indiensneming van personeel as belangrik beskou te identifiseer, en om vas te stel hoe sodanige vaardighede in die kurrikulum vir beroepsonderwys en .. opleiding in Namibië geïntegreer kan word. Literatuuroorsig het getoon dat werknemers benodig word met die volgende belangrike, kern- of indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede: kommunikasie, inligtingstegnologie, syfervaardigheid, samewerking met ander persone, probleemoplossing en die verbetering van eie leer en prestasie. Die navorsingspopulasie vir hierdie studie het uit 493 werkgewers bestaan wat indiensopleiding verskaf of wat persone in diens het wat reeds hul beroepsopleiding voltooi het. Tweehonderd-vier-en-veertig werkgewers het uiteindelik aan die vraelysondersoek deelgeneem. Die motor-, konstruksie- en metaalwerkbedryf, asook die elektriese-ingenieurswesesektor, is in die navorsingspopulasie verteenwoordig. Data is ingesamel deur literatuuroorsig te doen oor indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede, en deur vraelyste en persoonlike onderhoude. Die volgende vrae is in die vraelys en tydens gestruktureerde onderhoude gestel: i) Watter indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede is in die werkplek belangrik? ii) Wie is verantwoordelik vir die ontwikkeling van indiensneembaarheids-vaardighede? iii) Indien dit die verantwoordelikheid is van beroepsopleidingsentra om indiensneembaarheids-vaardighede te bevorder, op watter opvoedkundige vlak behoort opleiding met betrekking tot indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede ingestel te word? iv) Hoe behoort die aanleer van indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede bevorder te word? v) Hoe behoort indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede geassesseer te word? Daar is bevind dat werkgewers in Namibië indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede soos spanwerk, tydbestuur, positiewe houding, probleemoplossing, beplanning en die hantering van veelvuldige take as die belangrikste vaardighede beskou wat hulle van potensiële opgeleide werknemers verwag. Werkgewers het aangedui dat indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede in die huis, in skole en deur beroepsopleidingsentrums ontwikkel kan word. Hulle het voorgestel dat opleiding in indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede in die eerste jaar van opleiding by die beroepsopleidingsentrums vanaf vlak 1 aangebied behoort te word. Verdere bevinding was dat die assessering van kwekelinge se portefeuljes, waarneming en praktiese assessering geloofwaardige benadering tot die assessering van indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede is en dat dit binne die konteks van die werklike lewe gedoen behoort te word. Daar word op grond van die bevindinge onder meer aanbeveel dat beleidsraamwerk vir die ontwikkeling van indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede in die Namibiese beroepsonderwys en .. opleidingstelsel ontwikkel en geïmplementeer word. Spesifieke aanbevelings word gemaak ten opsigte van die tipes indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede, wie se verantwoordelikheid dit is om hierdie vaardighede te ontwikkel, op watter opleidingsvlak die indiensnemingsvaardighede geïmplementeer behoort te word, hoe dit ten beste aangeleer kan word, en hoe die leerproses met betrekking tot indiensneembaarheidsvaardighede geassesseer kan word.

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