Competencies in higher education: identifying and selecting important competencies based on graduates & professionals in food technology

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Students in higher engineering education should develop competencies to be prepared for their future professional careers. However, in the field of food technology it is not clear what set of competencies is most relevant. This paper created a comprehensive list of competencies for food technologists by combining both domain-specific and general literature (n = 4), and policy documents (n = 6). This list was used to establish the relative importance of its elements and map opportunities for optimal curricular improvement at Wageningen University. Data were collected via a survey and interviews with graduates and professionals. A comparison of the perceived importance of competencies versus the perceived opportunities for learning showed that analytical thinking, critical thinking, problem solving and decision making needed more attention in the study curriculum. The comprehensiveness of the list was assessed by pilot testing with respondents. The list and method show potential for other disciplines to identify and select important competencies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)434-453
JournalEuropean Journal of Engineering Education
Volume49
Issue number3
Early online date22 Aug 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2024

Keywords

  • Competencies
  • food technology
  • graduates
  • higher education

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