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A study of industrial design students' employment preparation and choices in Taiwan

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This study surveys industrial design (ID) students' employment preparation in Taiwan, including career awareness, competency required, working attitudes and values and vocational choices. Both qualitative and quantitative approaches were adopted and data were collected in three stages: literature review, in-depth interviews and questionnaire survey. The findings show that approximately 37 per cent of 904 participants decide not to enter the ID profession after graduation. ID students' career awareness is fairly good in terms of knowledge, values, preferences and self-concepts, but approximately one-fourth of the surveyed items received low mean ratings. The students' awareness of some of the job tasks and competencies required of industrial designers does not match the reality, and their perception of the lifestyle tends to be unrealistically negative, which is an observation not previously reported in the literature. The above, perhaps unrealistically negative, perception might be related to the high proportion of students rejecting an industrial design career after graduation. The authors discuss these results in the contexts of the national and international design employment markets. The findings could help design educators to understand what information needs to be provided to ID students, and help plan career guidance programmes.

Keywords: career guidance; design education; employment choices; employment preparation; higher education; industrial design

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: 1: National United University. 2: National Yunlin University of Science and Technology.

Publication date: 2010-10-01

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