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Title: Engineering in Indonesia : the transition from higher education into employment.
Author: Sweeting, Elizabeth Margaret.
Awarding Body: University of Sussex
Current Institution: University of Sussex
Date of Award: 1997
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The relationship between higher education and the world of work is explored in this thesis in a case study of engineers in Indonesia. The research attempts to gain a deeper understanding of the perceived needs and expectations of employers with regards to engineering graduates, and examines the relevance of university education and training for initial occupations in the first few years of work after graduation. The study investigates these relationships through a variety of instruments, including interviews of employers and graduates, a tracer study of 1,800 reCent engineering graduates, and in-depth studies of two of the more successful engineering institutes in the country. The thesis comprises six chapters. Following an introductory chapter, the relevant literature, reviewed in chapter 2, highlights some shortcomings in the understanding of the ┬Ěrelevance of university education to the world of work. In particular, studies investigating the views of various interested parties, such as employers and professional bodies, appear not to have given sufficient attention to recent graduates and the tasks they perform, the training they receive in the work place, and their opinions of the strengths and weaknesses of their education courses. The country context for the study is discussed in chapter 3. Indonesia is a large and low-income but rapidly developing Newly Industrializing Economy. Its economy has grown at the rate of 6%-7% per annum over the last 20 years, and manufacturing employment has grown at an annual rate of 10% in recent years, bringing in their wake profound structural changes. A number of issues in, higher education are discussed next, including the rapid expansion of engineering education, the quality of new entrants to the system and their achievement levels, the format of the engineering curriculum and teacher capabilities, and their consequences for the quantity and quality of educational delivery. Chapter 4 discusses the methodology used in the research. The general framework for the research is the case study method using a combination of qualitative and quantitative research methods. A purposive sample of thirty employers were interviewed in the rapidly expanding fabricated metals sub-sector of the manufacturing industry. The interviews were complemented by observations of the production processes involved. To assist triangulation, the views of recent engineering graduates employed in the same firms were canvassed. These graduates were also included in a more comprehensive tracer study of some 1,800 recent engineering graduates from public and private universities and some public polytechnics. Finally, two case studies were conducted in an attempt to understand the reasons for the high premium graduates from the top two engineering institutions can command in professional employment. Chapter 5 discusses the findings of the surveys and interviews and analyzes the results of the research. It is divided into two parts. In part A, both employers and graduates had little difficulty in pointing out the shortcomings of current engineering education programmes. These are documented here. They were also able to formulate constructive suggestions for their improvement. Many of the suggestions were common to both groups. Part B discusses the two special studies and attempts to assess their transferability to other engineering departments. The final chapter 6 highlights some of the more important issues raised by the study. It provides a number of recommendations for education policy makers and discusses the constraints to implementing change in Indonesian higher education institutions. One important suggestion is to encourage curriculum developers and teachers to become aware and take note of the valid and substantial contribution employers and graduates can make to curriculum development. Finally, the thesis argues for the more widespread use of needs identification in curriculum development in higher education for the professions.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Education & training Education Engineering Labor