Original Research

Industry’s perception of the relevance of software development education

Janet Liebenberg, Magda Huisman, Elsa Mentz
The Journal for Transdisciplinary Research in Southern Africa | Vol 11, No 3 | a66 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/td.v11i3.66 | © 2015 Janet Liebenberg, Magda Huisman, Elsa Mentz | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 25 February 2016 | Published: 31 December 2015

About the author(s)

Janet Liebenberg, Faculty of Natural Sciences, North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa
Magda Huisman, Faculty of Natural Sciences, North-West University, Potchefstroom
Elsa Mentz, Faculty of Education Sciences, North-West University, Potchefstroom

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Abstract

It is widely acknowledged that there is a shortage of software developers, not only in South Africa, but also worldwide. Despite reports, in mostly quantitative studies, of a gap between the industry needs and software development education, the view the industry has of the new graduates and the problems, challenges and solutions in respect of software development education has not been explored in detail. This article reports on a mixed methods study of the relevance of software development education from the perspective of the industry. The analysis reveals some interesting views held by the industry, as well as by the different generations on their new recruits and the problems and challenges that are faced. The following solutions to the problems are suggested: teamwork; projects and experience; work-integrated-learning and mentoring; technical and soft skills; keeping up to date; career guidance; introspection; and generational awareness.

Keywords

software development education; industry; computing curricula

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