CPACE Data Collection Strategy Overview

CPACE Data Collection Strategy Overview



The purpose of these data collection efforts is to gather information that will help post-secondary education institutions better understand and align computing education with the computational knowledge and skill development needs of the entry-level engineering workforce.

    Data Collection Methodology

We will be collecting the computational knowledge and skill information through the use of employer interviews and employee surveys.

Based on data analysis that we performed, we will be targeting small to large companies that will have entry-level engineering occupations (see interview protocol) representing the following key engineering MSU and LCC disciplines: Applied Science Engineering; Bio Systems Engineering; Chemical Engineering; Civil Engineering; Computer Engineering; Electrical/Electronics/Communications Engineering; Mechanical Engineering; Civil Engineering Technology/Technician; Electrical/Electronics/Communications Engineering Technology/Technician; Industrial Production Technologies/Technicians; Mechanical Engineering/Mechanical Technology/Technicians; and Computer Technology/Computer Systems Technology.

As a first step in a multi-tiered data collection engagement process, we look to the Advisory Board members to help us identify companies to reach out to that would be representative of the above disciplines. The CPACE data collection team will then cross-check industry and occupational representation to determine where we may have gaps and seek to address those data collection gaps through our engagement and industry/labor market data analysis efforts.

The geographic areas targeted include: 1) mid-Michigan region, 2) state of Michigan, and 3) out of state mid-west region. The mid-Michigan region's 13 counties (Bay, Clinton, Eaton, Genesee, Ingham, Huron, Lapeer, Livingston, Midland, Saginaw, Sanilac, Shiawassee, and Tuscola) are the initial target as the CPACE project is part of a regional collaborative effort to transform mid-Michigan's economy and workforce. The Mid Michigan Innovation Team (MMIT) -  is a network of community leaders spearheading this regional collaborative effort known as the Mid Michigan's U.S. Department of Labor Workforce Innovation in Regional Economic Development (WIRED) initiative - and  plays a critical role in this community building effort.

MMIT is a partner on this initiative because they seek to transform the region's largely-traditional manufacturing-based economy by fostering innovation, talent, and collaboration. Their focus is also on growth industries that require educating employees that are highly skilled in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines. The other two geographic areas, the state of Michigan followed by the out of state mid-west region, will be targeted should we find that an engineering entry-level occupation is not represented in mid-Michigan and to help us meet our data collection return rates.

We intend to hold 20-25 interviews with Engineering Managers/Directors and Human Resource Managers/Directors if the company is large enough to have both as it is felt that they would have direct knowledge of the computational skill needs and issues of entry-level engineering employees. This will also allow each to answer questions that the other may not have enough information to answer.

We hope to hold the interviews during the months of June through August 2008.

We intend to conduct web-based surveys of 200-250 employees of companies that participated in the interviews as well as employees of companies that are members of professional engineering societies or associations and other employer networks such as Michigan Regional Skills Alliances.

We hope to conduct the survey during the months of June through August 2008.

  • Pre-Testing

We intend to pre-test the survey and interview protocol with a small sub set of individuals consisting of a mix of employers and Advisory Board Members during May and June 2008.

  • Post Advisory Board Meeting  

The advisory board members will be sent electronic versions of the current drafts of the Employer Interview Protocol and the Employee Survey immediately following the meeting to give members the opportunity to review them more closely and recommend edits to flow and questions we seek answers to. It would be most helpful to receive your feedback by Monday, May 5, 2008 in order for us to move into the pre-testing phase.