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Posgrado y empleo: una comparativa entre Reino Unido y España

La semana pasada publicamos un post en el que se hacía referencia a la reciente presentación del estudio,  Barómetro de empleabilidad y empleo de los universitarios en España, 2015, del Observatorio de Empleabilidad y Empleo Universitarios (OEEU). También, en el marco de la discusión sobre la estructura del grado y posgrado,  sobre la que Javier Uceda escribió un post (leer aquí), damos cuenta ahora de un interesante informe que compara los estudios de posgrado en 8 países distintos. Sus autores,  Gillian Clarke e Ingrid Lunt, de la universidad de Oxford, analizan los temas de calidad, acceso y empleabilidad en Australia, Inglaterra, Alemania, India, Noruega, Escocia, Estados Unidos y España.

“The question of how many doctoral graduates are needed is a challenge for all countries,” señalan Clarke and Lunt. “The challenge includes both how to fund doctoral programmes and their contribution to the economy and society.”

Case studies were developed through literature reviews and interviews. The report focuses on the three themes of quality, access, and employment outcomes of postgraduate education and employs a comparative approach between England and other countries. The report explains context for structural changes to mainland European higher education systems.

«The influence of Bologna and wider European developments was very clear in all three mainland European countries included in the study. Germany, Norway and Spain had all used the opportunity for restructuring provided by Bologna to overhaul their higher education systems, with a particular focus on its quality.»

The report stipulated that, following investigation, all countries included value quality over other measures. This could be primarily an attempt to make the respective universities more internationally competitive. To this end, Germany, Norway and Spain have created programs to inspire excellence which provide additional funding to universities that meet criteria of excellence. In general, however, there is no doubt concerning the high quality of postgraduate education in any of the countries studied.

Generally the quality of masters and doctoral graduates seems not to be in question in almost all of the countries researched, some of which have centuries of experience and tradition in postgraduate education.

In respect to Spain, the report notes growing pressure to modernize its system of higher education to align with the rest of the European Union. However, it is difficult to modernize the system given its decentralized structure. Autonomous regions post a challenge given their individual jurisdiction over education and the difficulty of reaching consensus. Another challenge that Spain faces is that of over qualification due to a high graduation rate coupled with a high unemployment rate.

Several of those interviewed expressed the view that young people with postgraduate qualifications may have to take jobs that are well below the level of their qualification if they are to have any chance of finding employment and acquiring experience. This is referred to by the ministry as ‘occupational mismatching’ and may last several years before the graduate is able to gain employment commensurate with their post-graduate skills.

Para el caso de España, el estudio sugiere que una de las maneras de mejorar la inserción laboral de sus egresados sería la inclusión de habilidades y competencias generales en su sistema de educación superior.

One interviewee suggested that postgraduates did not necessarily have the skills relevant to the wider labour market, and that postgraduate higher education needed to focus more on generic skills to better meet employment demands. In contrast to Spain, the UK excels in providing general skills to graduates of PhD programs.

A frequently mentioned feature of strength in the English PhD was the generic and professional skills programmes which have been developed as a result of the Roberts report. It was generally agreed that England leads the way, and many countries (e.g. Germany, Norway and Spain) are following.

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*Referencia elaborada por Hannah Taylor y Miguel Ángel Sancho para univerdad.

 

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