ATVET QUESTIONNAIRE FINAL VERSION-4

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TRAINING, EDUCATION
AND
CAREER DEVELOPMENT
IN
ASSISTIVE TECHNOLOGY
1
Introduction............................................................................................................... 3
Functions of netscouts ggmbh ............................................................................... 3
Premises.................................................................................................................... 3
The Questionnaire .................................................................................................... 4
The Results ............................................................................................................... 5
1. Personal Data and the Handling of AT ....................................................................................... 5
2. Apprenticeship and further Education ....................................................................................... 8
3. Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and Training ................................................... 10
4. Job Descriptions in Assistive Technology and Career Path .................................................... 15
5. Cross-Sector and Cross-Disciplinary Competency Standards and Training in AT ............. 18
Conclusion .............................................................................................................. 20
2
Introduction
We are a service provider in the IT-sector who establishes regularly paid permanent work places for
physically challenged people, whose impairment prevent them from immediately getting a job in the
market place.
The internet is offering profitable opportunities for employees as well as for the company itself.
The office building and work places are fully accessible – also for wheelchair drivers.
We further offer the possibility to work from the home office if our orders allow for such. Thus, any
restrictions of mobility are almost irrelevant as far as the work and its organisation is concerned.
Our employees have personal assistance at the work place.
Functions of netscouts ggmbh
Netscouts ggmbh is partner of the „Assistive Technology Vocational Education and Training
(ATVET)“ project.
Our challenge is, to support the participating countries in terms of the situation of Assistive Technology
at the moment and the availability of instruction courses relying to Assistive Technology in Europe.
Another challenge is the quality assurance of the developed modules, to guarantee that they are
integrated safely in the European further education network
We also take part in the distribution of the conclusions.
Premises
The German Education System is based on the 2 pillars „ school“ and “apprenticeship“.
In public schools, general knowledge and key skills are taught. School Education and general
knowledge are handled as equal.
This kind of education shall be a basis for careers and personal development. Education also should
satisfy the requirements of the economy.
The main part of all entrants gets a state-approved profession in the dual system after ending their
school career. Everybody has the possibility to access this kind of profession.
3
The dual system is characterized through 2 criteria:

professional school and company

different competences in both sectors
Further education is every vocational act that deepens any existing job-related professional
qualification.
The fast technical advance as well as the need of lifelong learning, demand a continuous professional
education after the first apprenticeship. But also unskilled workers, who were not trained directly for
their occupation, can study further. In some professions, professional development is seen as
essential. Professional development is also seen as the acquirement of additional skills.
Places for additional learning are the company, high schools or special learning facilities. Assistive
Technology as defined as “…any product or service designed to enable independence for disabled
and older people” (King's Fund Consultation, 14.3. 2001), is the main item of this project.
The Questionnaire
Polled by standardized questionnaires containing 25 questions, sectioned in:
Part 1: Personal Data and the handling of AT
Part 2: Apprenticeship and further education
Part 3: Career development
Part 4: Description of work with AT and career
Part 5: Transsectoral and interdisciplinary competences and courses of instruction in AT
Firstly quantitative questions were answered. After that the interviewed person has the
opportunity to comment on the questions.
Forwarded and allotted: 143 questionnaires (concluding the bid for dissemination) colleagues
working with disabled people and companies working and dealing with AT.

Integrative aides

Staff members of all kind in those sectors working with disabled people


Staff Members of a facility for disabled people
Companies distributing AT
Interviews returned and answered: 53
4
Sample
- Civilian servant
- rehab colleagues
- Companies dealing with AT
- Persons concerned
The Results
1. Personal Data and the Handling of AT
„Please state what sector you work in. ““
This question was answered by all participants.
From the integration sector, combined sub areas, rail services - 24 answers. 11 people from the
interview work in the IT-Sector (Distribution hard and software) 18 persons out of the care and health
sector have answered.
Please state what sector you work in.
0; 0%
18; 34%
Integration
24; 45%
IT
Care
n.a.
11; 21%
Picture 1
5
Especially participants from the care and health sector, as well as staff members who are in direct
contact with disabled people have answered the questions.
6 of these people are in executive positions like C.E.O., vice C.E.O. including qualified employees and
skilled personnel 31 people. 16 aids, assistants were belonging to the interviewed.
In what capacity?
0; 0%
6; 11%
16; 30%
C.E.O.
Employee
Helper
n.a
31; 59%
Picture 2
More than the half of the interviewed persons are employees that could be interested in AT because of
their career development.
According to the question, how much AT is involved into their work, 50 persons answered. 3 times the
question was not answered.
24 persons 0 – 10%, 10 persons 11 – 50% and 16 persons 51 - 100%.
6
Please indicate how much of your job relates to
dealing with assistive technology.
3; 6%
0 - 10 %
16; 30%
24; 45%
11 - 50 %
51 - 100 %
n.a.
10; 19%
Picture 3
The persons who allotted only 10 % of their work has to do with AT, are mostly dealing with peer
counselling: in this case a wheelchair is not an AT
10 participants use implemental. The question how long people deal with AT was answered by 49
persons.
23 of that persons deal with AT since 5 or less years. 19 persons deal with it form 6 till 10 years and 7
deal with AT for more than 11 years. 4 persons have not answered this question
How long have you been working with assistive
technology?
4; 8%
7; 13%
0 - 5 years
23; 43%
6 - 10 years
more
n.a.
19; 36%
Picture 4
7
This data correlates with the data of employment and branche. Most of the interviewed persons work
in branches that might assume a highly assignment of AT, but while dealing with peer counselling AT
is not involved.
Conclusion
Mostly all of these questions was answered by the interviewed people.
2. Apprenticeship and further Education
From 53 interviewed persons, 22 persons are qualified employees out of the care sector. 16 persons
have a finished apprenticeship as a locksmith or car mechanic. 10 of the interviewed persons have
finished the university. 13 persons have more than one apprenticeship.
11 persons did not give any detailed information.
What qualification(s) do you hold?
11; 15%
16; 22%
Handcraft
University
13; 18%
Specialist
10; 14%
more than one
n.a.
22; 31%
Picture 5
Conspicuous is, that most of the interviewed persons were not acquainted with the subject. Most of
them do now work in the care sector.
8
11 persons do not have an apprenticeship; they managed to get into their position throughout their
engagement. With this heterogenic questions the answers correlate with the questions about training
courses about AT.
How much of the course(s) leading to your
qualification(s) was/were related to AT?
13; 25%
0-5%
6 - 50 %
1; 2%
51 - 100 %
5; 9%
34; 64%
n.a.
Picture 6
If you compare the number of people who were trained in the care sector and with the people who
work in the integrative sector, you come to the conclusion that AT is not a part of a apprenticeship.
On the question „What qualifications were required for your current work? “ 16 persons answered, that
no qualification was necessary. 16 people said that experience was a key qualification. 15 people
needed an apprenticeship and 5 had to study. 7 persons did not answer this question.
What qualifications were required for your
current job?
7; 12%
16; 28%
Experience
Education
Studies
16; 27%
none
n.a.
5; 8%
15; 25%
Picture 7
9
Also here we can see that most of the interviewed persons learned to handle their job throughout
personal engagement. This fact mirrors the requirements of the current economy that social
competence and qualification have a high duty.
Only 1 person answered to the last question. 52 times this question was not answered.
The third part of this Interview raises data of career development and schooling.
3. Continuing Professional Development (CPD) and Training
To get to do CPD in AT 18 persons named workshops. The umbrella term “software” was called by 5
interviewees. 13 persons noted that there is no opportunity for on-going CPD in AT and 21 persons
didn’t answer.
What opportunities have you had for on-going
CPD in AT?
5; 9%
Software
21; 36%
18; 32%
workshops
none
n.a.
13; 23%
Picture 8
Usually the workshops referred to instruction and presentation of aids and special software. Software
is in use at work to meat and to test AT. Notably CPD in AT can not be taken for granted, you have to
be proactive.
10
This agrees with the answers of the next question whether CPD would have met his needs.
40 persons did not answer or answered with “No”.
Do you feel this met your needs?
13; 25%
yes
no
28; 52%
n.a.
12; 23%
Picture 9
The question about the range of the on-the-job training is answered sparely, too. 41 persons did not
answer. 7 noted that there is no range. 3 said, that it’s a good idea and 2 noted a good co-operation
with experts.
Give us your views on the range of on-the-job
training you have experienced or which you as an
employer provide.
7; 13%
no Offer
3; 6%
2; 4%
good
work together with
experts
n.a.
41; 77%
Picture 10
11
The data correlate with the low range. But if there is any answer, so it´s positive. From this follows that
there is too little range, but if there is anything then it is an excellent one.
Just as well you can interpret the following question about the confidence coefficient handling of AT.
15 persons answered with „Yes“, 6 agreed partially and 3 negated. 30 persons did not answer.
Do you feel this enabled you (or your staff) to work
confidently and meet the requirements of the job in
relation to AT?
15; 28%
Yes
In Part
No
30; 55%
6; 11%
No Comment
3; 6%
Picture 11
11 interviews had always worked with a similar range of AT, 20 had not. 21 did not answer the
question.
Have you always worked with a similar range of
AT?
11; 21%
21; 41%
yes
no
n.a.
20; 38%
Picture 12
12
This correlates with the data of education and job. In health care (vocational training) jobs often work
with AT from beginning.
The open question „What training did you receive in order to work confidently in relation to the
unfamiliar range of AT?” was replied negatively. No training received 17 persons, 28 did not answer. 8
persons received training in AT which confined training in software and technical aids.
What training did you receive in order to work
confidently in relation to the unfamiliar range of
AT?
8; 15%
yes
no
28; 53%
17; 32%
n.a.
Picture 13
You can suspect that individual activities are necessary for CPD. 49persons had no comments on
CPD, training and AT. 4 noted that it would be desirable to get CPD.
Do you have any comments on CPD, training
and assistive technology?
4; 8%
yes
18; 34%
31; 58%
no
n.a.
Picture 14
13
This battery of questions is characterized by no answers.
Most of the interviewees could not answer the questions or did not want to answer.
Maybe vocational training and education in Assistive Technology is not significant for the job of the
interviewees.
Another explication is that neither employers nor employees see AT as a key qualification. Also you
can suppose that aids (ramps, wheelchairs etc.) are not seen as Assistive Technology and therefore
they are not considered.
In principle the response behaviour of this battery of questions correlates with the answers of dealing
with AT (figure 3). In that context 24 persons note that their deal would be 10% and less.
14
4. Job Descriptions in Assistive Technology and Career Path
The questions 16 to 18 ask about job description in AT and the career path of the interviewees.
13 persons found their jobs about an advertisement in newspaper or internet. Personal
recommendations were the road to success for 10 persons and 2 persons were placed by Federal
Employment Office. 1 person is working self-employed (freelance). He deals with special assistive
software. 27 interviewees did not answer.
How do you and your professional colleagues
find out about advertised jobs in AT?
13; 25%
Advert
employment center
27; 50%
2; 4%
propaganda
on their own
10; 19%
n.a
1; 2%
Picture 15
The issue is that jobs are not jobs in AT in the first step. Assistive Technology is part of the “trade”, for
example the handling of a special bed by a nurse. AT is not part of a job description.
So you can assert the answers of the next question: „Have you felt excluded from applying for an AT
job by the professional qualification required, despite appropriate experience?”
Just one person answered “Yes”, 52 interviewees answered “No” (29) or did not answer (23).
The query about job description shows a similar view. 34 persons don’t have examples for
inappropriate job description, 17 did not answer. 2 persons answered “Yes” but they hadn’t any
examples.
15
Have you seen examples of inappropriate job
descriptions and professional qualification
requirements for AT jobs?
2; 4%
17; 32%
yes
no
n.a.
34; 64%
Picture 16
No person gave a statement.
Just one person noted that discrimination could be a problem in job description. Maybe it could be a
fear to discriminate a person because of necessity of AT. 52 persons didn’t see any problems about
job description.
2 persons explained difficulties in developing career paths in Assistive Technology. They noted the
costs of CPD and the lack of cooperation of social assistance authorities.
If you are responsible for recruiting for AT jobs,
have you experienced difficulties drafting job
descriptions/ advertisements for AT jobs?
1; 2%
1; 2%
1; 2%
yes
18; 33%
costs further education
social help taker
no
33; 61%
n.a.
Picture 17
16
If you take the few answers as an indicator for CPD, so it strikes that AT and the closely related
complex of handicapped people is seen as a task of public authority/responsibility and not as a task of
private enterprises/the private sector.
In principle you can note for this battery of questions that most of the interviewees didn’t give answers.
One reason could be that Assistive Technology is not mentioned in job description because of the fear
of discrimination.
Another reason could be the sample: Just one person of all was responsible for recruiting jobs.
17
5. Cross-Sector and Cross-Disciplinary Competency Standards and
Training in AT
The answer pattern in the last battery of questions is more heterogeneous. Here are questions about
cross-sector and cross-disciplinary competences and training in AT.
The question „Do you work with AT professionals from other disciplines?” is answered with “yes” by
16, “no” by 12 and is not answered by 18 persons.
Do you work with AT professionals from other
disciplines?
16; 29%
18; 32%
yes
Exchange
no
n.a.
10; 18%
12; 21%
Picture 18
10 of those who work with professionals from other disciplines told that they exchange knowledge and
experience. In correlation to job descriptions you can draw the conclusion that most of all the
exchange of knowledge is in health care sector.
In principle no difficulties in working with professionals are noted. Also there is no comment on crossdisciplinary competences and CPD in Assistive Technology.
18
Would you consider working in AT in a different
sector?
12; 29%
yes
19; 47%
no
n.a
10; 24%
Picture 19
The last question whether the interviewed could consider working in AT in a different sector is
answered with “Yes” by 12 persons, with “no” by 10 persons. 19 didn’t answer.
Lack of training for the job was mentioned only to be a difficulty in changing the sector.
19
Conclusion
In principle most of the interviewees could not answer the questionnaire completely but partially. This
explains the high number of “missing” (no answer).
However, there is only one question, whether there is alluded a topic of society, even the Germans big
scepticism of providing information about their job. Also it is worthy to be mentioned that in Germany
usually AT is not part of job advertisements or a job-description. So vocational training in Assistive
Technology is part in the health care sector with a rich offer for example in workshops.
AT as a common equipment of a workplace or as common subject in VRT or CPD is not enforced yet.
If you take into consideration the high number of those, who got their job not because of qualification
or training but because of private activities, so you can ask about the meaning of AT as well in
vocational training as in CPD in the German educational system.
Also you can question the meaning whether AT is mentioned as a key qualification in job-descriptions.
From this it could be concluded that the meaning of AT has to become more significant for the
educational system.
The item „Assistive Technology“ was understood as a vague item, therefore, most of the interviewees
were doubtful in replying to the questions. This explains the high number of unanswered questions.
20
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