Title

Professors' and Practitioners' Perceptions of Contemporary Business Graduate Competencies

Date of Degree

8-2005

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Program

Education

Advisor

Absael Antelo

Advisor

Richard L. Henderson

Advisor

David G. Vequist

Advisor

Joseph W. Eyles

Abstract

Through a quantitative comparative study, the researcher compared the perceptions held by Taiwanese business teachers and business managers of the importance of competencies for business graduates entering the workplace and of the graduates’ actual performance. The skill gaps between education and employment have become an increasingly relevant issue in Taiwanese society. The solution to this problem requires a reexamination of the different perceptions of workplace competencies and performance demanded of graduates. Through a quantitative comparative study, the researcher compared the perceptions held by Taiwanese business teachers and business managers of the importance of competencies for business graduates entering the workplace and of the graduates’ actual performance. A survey questionnaire adapted from the research tool used in studies by Hodges and Burchell (2003) was administered to 402 business teachers of seven 4-year colleges, institutes of technology, and universities, and to 550 managers of business organizations in Taichung city, Taiwan. The frequency distribution, independent-samples and paired-samples f-tests, and one-way ANOVA plus post-hoc Tukey’s HSD procedure were used to identify the differences between the participant groups. The findings revealed that Taiwanese business teachers and managers strongly adhered to the perception that staying capable in a world of change requires a willingness to learn. In addition, the perceptions of the importance of competencies and business graduate performance were affected by the two groups’ different demographic characteristics. Overall, both business teachers and managers believed that business graduates needed to have highly improved levels of competency in most areas. The results of the study could provide some valuable insights for the government, educators, employers, workers, graduates, students, parents, and researchers. Some implications were also suggested for the future development of competencies in higher education.

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