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The Use of Workforce Assessment as a Component of Career and Technical Education Program Evaluation

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This research project examined the extent to which Career and Technical Education (CTE)-related programs use workforce needs assessment as a component of their evaluation activities. An employer perspective was used to develop a conceptual framework drawing on strategic human resource management theory. The extent and methods utilized for workforce needs assessment activities associated with a national CTE program were examined using data from the annual evaluation study of the Advanced Technological Education (ATE) program funded by the National Science Foundation. The findings showed that only one-half of the ATE projects with a specific CTE occupational focus engaged in workforce needs assessment. The most frequently reported approach for workforce assessment was the use of secondary data from existing sources. The use of primary data collected from business and industry as well as other constituent groups was examined in more detail. The most frequently used primary methods for workforce needs assessment were advisory committees followed by gathering anecdotal information and the use of formal and structured survey questionnaires and interviews. Recommendations are made for the expanded use of workforce needs analysis in CTE policy, practice, and research.
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Keywords: CTE evaluation; human resource training and development; workforce assessment

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: January 1, 2011

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  • (CTER) publishes refereed articles that examine research and research-related topics in vocational/career and technical education, career development, human resource development, career issues in the schools (Grades K-12), postsecondary education, adult and lifelong learning, and workforce education. The CTER Editorial Board is committed to publishing scholarly work that represents a variety of conceptual and methodological bases. Submission of manuscripts representing one of the following styles is encouraged: (a) empirically-based manuscripts that report results of original research, either quantitative or qualitative, (b) reviews or synthesis of empirical or theoretical literature, (c) essays derived from original historical or philosophical research, (d) reviews of recently published books, and (e) rejoinders to articles recently published in CTER. CTER will consider for publication papers initially presented at conferences, including those disseminated through conference proceedings.
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