The Interface Between Higher Education Institutions’ Curriculum and the Labour Market: What Are Universities Doing in Tanzania?


There are criticisms that higher education institutions (HEIs) are producing graduates who are under-prepared for the labour market and world of work. At the core of the argument is that HEIs design and develop curricula, which only enable students to grasp theoretical knowledge while limiting capacities for critical understanding, acquisition relevant skills and application in real-life situations. As such, the paper attempts to uncover the interface between HEIs’ curriculum and the labour market in Tanzania. This is paper is guided by a combination of the human capital theory by Schults, (1961) and Becker (1964) as well as stakeholder theory by Edward Freeman in the 1980s. The former emphasises education, which enables individual to develop knowledge and skills for enhanced productivity and earnings. The latter focuses on a set of relationships among groups that have a stake in the activities and how they interact to jointly create education value. Within this framing is the argument on how different stakeholders can work together to design and develop a curriculum, which align with the labour market demands. The paper report on the qualitative data collected through interviews and documentary review. From the analysis, four key issues emerged. These are (i) deliberate intentions to reform the curriculum, (ii) devising strategies to link curriculum with the labour market, (iii) putting in place curriculum enablers, (iv) discerning from western model of education. The paper offers theoretical and practical implications for higher education stakeholders with respect to designing and developing context specific and relevant curriculum.

Author Information
Lilian Stewart Ngido, University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania
Ntimi Mtawa, University of Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

Paper Information
Conference: ACEID2024
Stream: Curriculum Design & Development

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Posted by James Alexander Gordon