UTP University of Science and Technology in Bydgoszcz (POLAND)
About this paper:
Appears in: EDULEARN16 Proceedings
Publication year: 2016
Pages: 8296-8303
ISBN: 978-84-608-8860-4
ISSN: 2340-1117
doi: 10.21125/edulearn.2016.0815
Conference name: 8th International Conference on Education and New Learning Technologies
Dates: 4-6 July, 2016
Location: Barcelona, Spain
The paper is a continuation of two pieces of research presented at the IATED conferences. The first article “Concept of the education programs evaluation system for the UTP University of Science and Technology in Bydgoszcz” describes the education program evaluation tools; the survey questionnaires elaborated at the Faculty of Management, the UTP, and addressed to three groups: students, graduates and employers. In the second paper “Evaluation of education programs and educational outcomes - results of the pilot graduates survey“, the author presents the results and provides their analysis for the pilot survey performed in the summer of 2015 among the graduates of the Faculty of Management, the UTP.

The present paper offers the results of the pilot survey performed in February 2016 among 17 employers.
The introduction gives the justification for the need of continuous changes in education programs and for getting adjusted to the job market requirements. It also underlines the role of feedback coming from employers in that process.

The main part of the paper provides the results of the survey performed at the end of February at the meeting of academic staff and employers at the Faculty of Management, the UTP. Similarly to the pilot graduates survey, described in the second paper, the employers expressed their opinions on the educational effects in terms of the knowledge, skills and social competencies acquired. Most of the respondents investigated (77%) hold a top managerial position. 50% of the employers represent small enterprises (with less than 50 employees) and 38% - big companies (with more than 250 employees). Almost 75% of the respondents represent service-providers. The graduates the employers expressed their opinions about were interns, received their obligatory student training or were their permanent or temporary employees. The survey results point to an advantage of good opinions expressed by the employers on the educational outcomes of the graduates. More than 70% found the outcomes positive or fairly positive. The score for respective outcomes in terms of knowledge, skills and social competencies varies. The employers awarded the highest score to basic knowledge, IT tools operation skills and group work and the lowest score – to the skill of practical application of the theoretical knowledge. The employers considered social competencies and skills, indicated by more than half of the respondents, as the most important criterion for making the decision about employment. Evaluating the candidate, only 18% of the employers consider knowledge to be the priority for evaluating the educational outcomes.

The paper ends up with general conclusions which come from a comparison of the responses of the graduates and employers. The final part also provides specific suggestions of the employers on the education programs changes proposed.
Higher education, education programs, evaluation, pilot survey.