Investigating stakeholders’ perceptions of employability factors: evidence from a vocational college in Nevşehir


Thesis Type: Postgraduate

Institution Of The Thesis: Middle East Technical University, Turkey

Approval Date: 2011

Thesis Language: English

Student: Yelda Sarıkaya

Supervisor: HANİFE AKAR

Abstract:

The main purpose of this study was to examine and describe college students’ and graduates’ perceptions of the received and expected levels of employability skills and qualities clustered into the domains of communication, mathematics, quantitative, foreign language, technology, teamworking, learning, problem-solving, adaptability, and personal qualities during college training, and also to assess college educators’ and employers’ perceptions regarding the importance level of identified employability skills and qualities for graduates’ entry, success and productivity in workplaces. In this study, data were gathered through three distinct questionnaires whose frame and content were developed by utilizing a survey with 218 students, 54 graduates, 26 educators and 16 employers. The setting was Cappadocia Vocational College campus and several towns in Nevşehir where workplaces of external partners of the college are located. Descriptive and inferential statistics were utilized to analyze the results of this study. Frequencies were tabulated to determine significant associations and mean scores were calculated to assess the identified variables. Paired and independent samples t-tests were utilized to explore the differences between the perceptions of students, graduates and educators. The responses of employers were tabulated within itself due to low number of participants. The findings of indicated that students and graduates perceived college training to have little or moderate impact on employability skill acquisition; however, besides student population, employers and educators perceived employability skills to be of medium or high importance for graduates’ effective job performance and productivity of workplaces.