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Title: Academics', students', employers', and graduates' perceptions towards business management and administration undergraduate employability: implications for higher education and industry in Oman
Authors: Al-Azri, Abdallah Khalfan Hamood
Advisors: Green, A
Ellis, V
Keywords: Student's perspectives;Employment in Oman;The relationship between HE and industry in Oman;Skills and labour market in Oman;The role of HE in enhancing student's employability
Issue Date: 2016
Publisher: Brunel University London
Abstract: Employers are calling upon higher education institutions (HEIs) to enhance graduates’ quality of work-related skills and knowledge. The Omani government is trying to strengthen the relationship between higher education (HE) and industry as an effective strategy for promoting a student’s employability and expertise; however, the communication is ineffective and not enough. The purpose of this study is to create new understandings about business management and administration (BMA) undergraduate employability in Oman through exploring the perceptions of students, graduates, employers and academics. It examines: the role of HEIs, the BMA departments and industry in promoting BMA students’ employability; students’ expectations from their HEIs; skills and knowledge provided by BMA departments and those required by companies in the workplace; the implementation and effectiveness of extra-curricular and academic activities within HEIs; and finally the effectiveness of the HE-industry relationship in developing students’ employability. By using the human capital theory, this study aims to explore the impact of formal education and work experience on students’ employability. Several employability approaches and frameworks are included in the literature review chapter. Data were collected from surveys (academics, students, graduates, and employers), and semi-structured interviews with academics within the different public and private HEIs. The data were analysed using numerical (quantitative) and textual (qualitative) techniques. The collaboration between education professionals and industry practitioners was perceived as one of the most important factors for promoting students’ employability. A serious and active commitment from the government, HE decision makers, HEIs, business departments, and employers in developing students’ work-related skills and knowledge, and reaching a win-win situation was highly valued. Moreover, results identify certain skills required by employers to assist graduates in implementing their knowledge in the workplace. Research implications highlighted the significance of the HE-industry relationship in developing BMA undergraduates’ employability. The study contributes new knowledge about the issue being investigated particularly in the Gulf and Oman contexts. The study is expected to contribute in addressing the policy gap in the relationship between policy makers, employers, and HEIs leading to the implementation of the necessary approaches of reinforcing students’ work-related skills and knowledge. Key Words: Omani Education System, Perceptions, Employability, Undergraduates, Business and Administration Department (BMA) within Higher Education Institution (HEI), Higher education (HE), industry, education stakeholders.
Description: This thesis was submitted for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy and awarded by Brunel University London.
Appears in Collections:Education
Dept of Education Theses

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