Pretest Database
Project Title:PIAAC-Longitudinal (PIAAC-L) 2016 - Acquisition of Competencies (English Version)
  1. General Information: *Note: This item was tested in German. This is an English translation of the original German wording. The translation does not correspond exactly to the wording in the English PIAAC source questionnaire.*
  2. Question Text: What is your highest vocational training qualification or university degree? Please tell me using list 2.
    [Welchen höchsten beruflichen Ausbildungsabschluss bzw. Hochschulabschluss haben Sie? Sagen Sie es mir bitte anhand der Liste 2.]
  3. Instruction: INT: Show list 2. [INT: Liste 2 vorlegen]
  4. Answer Categories 1 No vocational training or university degree (yet) [(Noch) keinen beruflichen Ausbildungs- oder Hochschulabschluss]

    2 Vocational training (apprenticeship) completed [Beruflich-betriebliche Berufsausbildung (Lehre) abgeschlossen]

    3 Vocational school education (vocational school, commercial school, college school or school of health care (1 year)) completed [For German translation see pdf-File]

    4 Completed training at a technical school, master-craftsmenschool or technician school [Ausbildung an einer Fachschule, Meister- oder Technikerschule abgeschlossen]

    5 Vocational or specialist academy, dual university or school of health care (2-3 years) completed [Berufs- oder Fachakademie, Duale Hochschule oder Schule des Gesundheitswesens (2-3-jährig) abgeschlossen]

    6 University of Applied Sciences degree: Bachelor / Engineering degree [Fachhochschulabschluss: Bachelor / Ingenieurschulabschluss]

    7 University of Applied Sciences degree: Master or Diploma [Fachhochschulabschluss: Master oder Diplom]

    8 College degree: Bachelor [Hochschulabschluss: Bachelor]

    9 University degree: diploma, „Magister“, state examination or master’s degree [Hochschulabschluss: Diplom, Magister, Staatsexamen oder Master]

    10 Doctorate [Promotion]

    11 A foreign vocational qualification [Einen ausländischen beruflichen Abschluss]

    12 Another vocational qualification [Einen anderen beruflichen Abschluss]


    1. Recommendations: Question: No changes recommended.
      Answer options: We recommend for those answer categories for which additional qualifications are possible (e.g. vocational or specialist academy or second state examination) to expand the corresponding options in order to prevent respondents from choosing an answer option that does not adequately reflect their professional qualification.
      In order to enable a correct allocation of unclear cases, e.g. nurses (category 5: vocational or specialist academy, dual university or school of health care (2-3 years) completed) with a 2-year additional training as a specialist nurse (category 12: another vocational qualification), a half-open answer category should be offered:
      "Another professional qualification, namely______________
      [Einen anderen beruflichen Abschluss, und zwar______________]"
      Similarly, category 11 (a foreign vocational qualification) could also be adapted:
      "A foreign vocational qualification, namely______________
      [Einen ausländischen beruflichen Abschluss, und zwar______________]"
  1. Cognitive Techniques: Emergent Probing
  2. Findings for Question: This question was asked to all 18 test persons. All respondents can assign themselves to a corresponding highest vocational training qualification or university degree on the basis of the list. Four test per-sons (TP 05, 08, 09, 10) experienced different difficulties in answering the question:

    Test person 05 has problems to find her correct education degree in the list. The test person has attended a private language school for three years. At the beginning she tends to mistakenly assign herself to category 3 (vocational school education). At the interviewer’s request, she finally correctly chooses category 12 (another vocational qualification).

    Test person 08 also has difficulties finding her highest vocational training or university degree in the list: "Not included. I am a specialist nurse in intensive care medicine and anesthesia. That would be regular point no. 5. For three years you become a normal nurse. And then you study for two more years to do the specialty training. It is also state-approved.” Test person 08 finally decides to only indicate the training to become a "normal nurse" and finally assigns her highest vocational training qualification to the value 5 (vocational or specialist academy, dual university or school of health care (2-3 years old) completed): "I would then have indicated the 5 and would have embezzled the additional training" (TP 08). Accordingly, the test person does not see corresponding additional vocational qualifications covered in the list. According to the test person, category 12 (another vocational qualification) is not suitable for her.

    The test persons 09 and 10 also criticize the submitted list. Test person 09 has difficulties in identifying which of the options represents "classical vocational training". Based on a question from the test director, the test person finally opted for category 2 (vocational training (apprenticeship) completed) and thus correctly assigned herself to the category corresponding to her training. Test person 10 states that she "even has the second state examination", but that this option is not explicitly mentioned in the list, yet she correctly classifies herself in category 9 (university degree: diploma, “Magister”, state examination or master’s degree).
  1. Question Topic: Job and career/ Job situation & professional activity
  2. Construct: Highest vocational training qualification or university degree