Purpose – The aim of the research presented here was to detect, in line with the European Union’s “Education and Training 2020” work program, the training needs of teachers and trainers working in the vocational education and training (VET) system in the Italian Region of Veneto to design courses, experiences and other training programs tailored to meet the needs emerged. Design/methodology/approach – Four focus groups were including VET teachers and trainers were created, two before the construction and two after the online administration of an ad hoc questionnaire asking teachers and trainers to rate 67 competencies (43 for teachers, 24 for trainers) on the two dimensions of self-assessment (explicitly defined as the current level of mastery) and importance (explicitly defined as the expected level of mastery). Eight hundred twelve teachers and 166 trainers filled in the questionnaire which also asked them to give suggestions about the courses, experiences and other training programs to be designed. Findings – In questionnaires, teachers and trainers declare they are competent enough to do what they do (self-assessment always obtains higher ratings than importance, except in one competence for teachers), even if in focus groups they say they want to be trained. Accordingly, they express a clear preference for short or very short courses, tailored on their specific needs and for training experiences and programs which are alternative to classroom training. Practical implications – The research is a preliminary action to a European Social Fund project named “Training for trainers”, whose main aim is to give birth to courses, experiences and other training programs, specifically dedicated to VET teachers and trainers, to allow them to develop or refresh the competencies they feel they need for work. Besides, it allowed testing of the benefit of using mixed methods for a competence-based analysis of needs. Originality/value – Data will be used to design courses, experiences and other training programs that really meet the needs of VET teachers and trainers in Veneto to tackle those aspects they consider really important for work in a lifelong learning perspective.
European Journal of Training and Development – Emerald Publishing
Published: Jan 5, 2015
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