Dec 18, 2012

Vietnam - Universities told to consult with businesses to design training curricula

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VietNamNet Bridge – A paradox has been existing in the labor market: a lot of university graduates cannot find jobs, while businesses still lack workers because the candidates cannot meet their requirements.

Schools criticized for making out bad products

Employers always complain that it’s very difficult to find the university graduates who can satisfy their requirements and soon get adapted to the new jobs. They say new graduates don’t have deep knowledge in their fields, lack soft skills and bad foreign language skills.

Therefore, experts have called on to renovate the universities’ training curriculums so as to create the products that fit enterprises. Especially, they said employers should “place orders” with universities, requesting the products which can satisfy their needs.

Director of the Thai Nguyen University Dang Kim Vui admitted that new university graduates have limited working capability both in professional knowledge and skills. However, he said the problem does not exist in all training majors.

In some majors, Vui said, the curriculums have been renovated, while the trainers well consider the demand of the society. Therefore, the graduates of the majors have high qualifications and can get adapted to the jobs.

Meanwhile, the capability of the bachelors in some other majors is more limited due to many reasons. One of these is that the majors remain unfamiliar to both trainers and students.

In some training branches, Vietnam lags behind the world because of the tardiness in importing technologies. While enterprises update information and renovate themselves regularly to get adapted to the new circumstances, schools’ curricula usually keep stable for at least five years. Therefore, the lecturers themselves have to update new knowledge to teach to students.

Vui also admitted that a lot of graduates don’t have necessary soft skills, and that the Ministry of Education and Training has tried to settle the problem by asking schools to teach soft skills in curricular lessons. However, he believes that schools should not be overly criticized for their graduates’ lack of soft skills.

Director of the Hanoi National University Mai Trong Nhuan also said that the current problem that new university graduates cannot adapted to the new jobs immediately should be analyzed from different angles.

According to Nhuan, there are three groups of bachelors. The first and the second groups comprise of profession al bachelors, such as nurse practitioners or researchers need to take their works at once.

Meanwhile, the third one includes the ones who receive general knowledge and then would receive special training courses by the employers to become suitable to the enterprises. This way has been followed in many other countries in the world. Microsoft, for example, retrains all the bachelors for six months before officially assigning works to them.

Schools should consult with businesses when compiling textbooks?

Renovating the lesson plans with the consultation of enterprises has been suggested as a solution to the current problems.

In fact, this way has been followed by a lot of schools already. The heads of the Hanoi National University, University of Technology, University of Foreign Trade and Thai Nguyen University all have affirmed that they have been compiling textbook with the assistance of businesses.

Nhuan from the Hanoi National University said all the member schools of the university, when compiling the standard training programs by accessing CDIO (Conceive — Design — Implement — Operate), have to follow a compulsory procedure – consulting with the users about their demand.

Tien Phong

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