A five-year study of core competencies by students in a technology management undergraduate program

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



Technology Studies

Publication Title

PICMET 2018 - Portland international conference on management of engineering and technology: Managing technological entrepreneurship: The engine for economic growth, proceedings


Effective technology management programs support students in their knowledge related to skills and competencies required in the workforce. When developing a curriculum relevant to the needs of the students and today's technology industries, it is important to identify the prior knowledge and experience that students bring into the program. For this study, an online survey was utilized to collect primary data from 2013 to 2017 from 289 newly enrolled technology management students. The study examined their entry level of knowledge through multiple questions focused on four competencies: Strategic management of technology, management of technological change, quality management of technology, and assessment and evaluation of technology. The study found that while two competencies showed an increase in the first-year students' knowledge over the five-year period, two competencies consistently showed a low level of knowledge throughout the same timeframe. The results also highlighted gaps in students' competencies when they initially entered a technology management undergraduate program. The significance of this study will help academic institutions improve their curricula, which ultimately will better equip students with core competencies that contribute positively to their academic and professional success.

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