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.*

    Questions 13-15 were only asked to those persons who stated in question 12 that they had been employed in the previous week.
  2. Introduction: Answering the following questions is about the knowledge and skills you need and use in your workplace. It does not matter whether or not you have been awarded a diploma or certificate for this.
    First of all, we are interested in your work-related knowledge. This is about the knowledge you have acquired in practice, during training or from books. This knowledge may also include knowledge of processes and procedures.
    [Bei der Beantwortung der folgenden Fragen geht es um Ihre Kenntnisse und Fertigkeiten, die Sie an Ihrem Arbeitsplatz benötigen und einbringen. Dabei spielt es keine Rolle, ob Sie dafür ein Zeugnis oder ein Zertifikat erhalten haben oder nicht.
    Zunächst interessieren uns Ihre arbeitsbezogenen Kenntnisse. Es geht hier um Ihr Wissen, das Sie in der Praxis, bei der Ausbildung oder aus Büchern erworben haben. Dieses Wissen kann auch Kenntnisse über Abläufe und Vorgehensweisen beinhalten.]
  3. Question Text: How do you rate your knowledge in comparison to what is required for the completion of your work?
    [Wie schätzen Sie Ihr Wissen im Vergleich dazu ein, was für die Erledigung Ihrer Arbeit erforderlich ist?]
  4. Instruction: INT: Read out the instructions. [INT: Vorgaben vorlesen.]
  5. Answer Categories 1 I know more than is necessary. [Ich weiß mehr als erforderlich ist.]

    2 For this work I would need further knowledge, which I should acquire. [Für diese Arbeit bräuchte ich weitere Kenntnisse, die ich mir aneignen sollte.]

    3 I know exactly as much as is necessary. [Ich weiß genau so viel wie erforderlich ist.]


    1. Recommendations: As a general rule, before the set of questions on work-related knowledge and skills, information should be provided in advance in a clearly defined introductory text on which different areas are to be surveyed in the following, so that the respondents do not take all work-related skills into account in the first question (see also the findings on question 15).
      Introduction: Answering the following questions is about your knowledge - i.e. your expertise - and your skills - i.e. the skills you need and use in your workplace. It does not matter whether or not you have been awarded a diploma or certificate for this.
      [Bei der Beantwortung der folgenden Fragen geht es um Ihre Kenntnisse – also Ihr Wissen – und um Ihre Fertigkeiten – also Ihr Können, das Sie an Ihrem Arbeitsplatz benötigen und einbringen. Dabei spielt es keine Rolle, ob Sie dafür ein Zeugnis oder ein Zertifikat erhalten haben oder nicht.]
      We are initially interested in your work-related knowledge. This is about your knowledge, which you have acquired in practice, during training or from books. This knowledge can also include knowledge of processes and procedures.
      [Zunächst interessieren uns Ihre arbeitsbezogenen Kenntnisse. Es geht hier um Ihr Wissen, das Sie in der Praxis, bei der Ausbildung oder aus Büchern erworben haben. Dieses Wissen kann auch Kenntnisse über Abläufe und Vorgehensweisen beinhalten.]
      Question: Please think about the day-to-day execution of your work: How do you rate your knowledge compared to what is required to do your job? This is not about the possible extension of tasks or your career in the job. [Bitte denken Sie an die alltägliche Ausführung Ihrer Arbeit: Wie schätzen Sie Ihr Wissen im Vergleich dazu ein, was für die Erledigung Ihrer Arbeit erforderlich ist? Es geht hier nicht um die möglichen Erweiterungen der Aufgaben oder Ihre Karriere im Job.]
      (INT: Present list with answer scale)
      [(INT: Liste mit Antwortskala vorlegen.)]
      Answer options: The answer category "For this work I would need further knowledge which I should acquire" has to be adjusted, as it is not clear that it is not sufficient knowledge to do the work. In addition, a scale with three answer options allows only slight variance and promotes socially desirable answering behaviour. To counteract this, we recommend the use of a bipolar, end-point and center-labeled 11-point scale:
      1 Much less knowledge [Sehr viel weniger Kenntnisse]
      2
      3
      4
      5
      6 Just as much knowledge as necessary [Genauso viele Kentnisse wie erforderlich]
      7
      8
      9
      10
      11 Much more knowledge [Sehr viel mehr Kenntnisse]
      An alternative naming of the scale points, which explicitly takes up the target dimension "knowledge" in the scale, but is longer:
      1 I know much less than necessary [Ich weiß sehr viel weniger als erforderlich ist.]
      2
      3
      4
      5
      6 I know just as much as necessary. [Ich weiß genauso viel wie erforderlich ist.]
      7
      8
      9
      10
      11 I know much more than necessary. [Ich weiß sehr viel mehr als erforderlich ist.]
  1. Cognitive Techniques: General Probing, Specific Probing, Comprehension Probing
  2. Findings for Question: In total, nine (TP 02, 06, 07, 08, 09, 11, 14, 15, 16) of the 14 test persons state that they know more than is necessary to do their job, three test persons (TP 01, 03, 04) admit that they need further knowledge for their work which they should acquire and two (TP 05, 13) say that they know exactly as much as is necessary.

    First of all, it is noticeable that six test persons (TP 01, 02, 03, 04, 07, 14) find it difficult to decide on an answer, because the answer category "For this work I would need further knowledge which I should acquire." is not clearly formulated. This answer category is rather understood in such a way that further knowledge is always needed in the sense of lifelong learning or an individual wish exists to acquire further knowledge:
    • "Somewhere between the last and the penultimate. I'd like to know more about exactly how it happens, but right now I actually know as much as I need to. […] Actually, you always need more knowledge." (TP 01; Answer: need further knowledge)
    • "I know a lot. I know other things I don "t really need to know. Sometimes I feel like I could go deeper into this. It's difficult to answer. I'd take the last one. Although, actually, it makes me feel worse." (TP 02; Answer: know more than necessary)
    • "To do my job the way it works, I would say a) [knows more than necessary]. To do the job in such a way that I bring a certain added value or that more happens, I would say b) [needs more knowledge]. [...] Needed, is, rather I would like. Needed, because I have the feeling that I can't do my job otherwise, that would be something else." (TP 04; Answer: need further knowledge)
    • "Of course, it's difficult to say. Is it about errands or what is meant? Is it about what has been required so far, or what might potentially be required? Altogether, the reference scale is not very clear. When I think about what has been necessary so far, and I have given the answer to this question, I know more. You can ultimately acquire knowledge in the expectation that you will need more in another position in the future." (TP 07; Answer: knows more than necessary)
    • "That's a hard one to answer. Because, I'd put a funny cross in the first two. Because, on the one hand, I know more than I need to. But there are still a few things where I should acquire more knowledge. I find that really hard to answer." (TP 14; Answer: knows more than is necessary)
    It is noticeable that the five test persons have difficulties to position themselves on the answer scale because it is not clear that the second answer category means that they do not have sufficient knowledge to do their current work.

    When asked what they understand by "work-related knowledge" and whether they can think of any other examples, all fourteen test persons answer in analogy to TP 03: "What I need to know to do my daily work". Furthermore, test persons 15 and 16 note that the acquisition of work-related knowledge requires training or studies.

    With regard to the examples given, a distinction can be made between hard and soft skills. Five test persons (TP 03, 08, 09, 11, 14) mention only hard skills, six test persons (TP 02, 04, 06, 07, 15, 16) mention both hard and soft skills and three persons do not mention any examples of work-related knowledge. The following are examples of respondents who are considered to have hard skills, i.e. specialist knowledge or knowledge of processes:
    • "For example, master InDesign and Photoshop." (TP 03)
    • "Know and understand clinical pictures, therapy, diagnostics and ward structure." (TP 08)
    • "Knowledge of various tools we work with, e.g. SAP, MS Office and communication media." (TP 09)
    • "Yes, as a welder, of course. I build coaches and this is a very complex skeleton, which we build here, which goes over several stations. And as I said before, there are jigs and fixtures. That's where I insert my pipes, weld them off, take it out with a crane and move it on." (TP 11)
    Soft skills such as pedagogical abilities, social or presentation skills, didactics or general dealing with people are only mentioned in combination with hard skills:
    • "Things like communication, organization, processing and presentation." (TP 04)
    • "Social and professional competence, and pedagogical competence." (TP 06)
    • "Any information that will help me do my job. knowledge of methods, state of research, didactics." (TP 07)
    • "Definitely social skills. In my line of work, training expertise, basic medical and sales knowledge." (TP 15)
    • "So when I sit at the computer, computer skills. When I'm at the cash register, that I know how to work this thing. Then the ability to concentrate. Which is not part of the process. That you can deal with people, remain friendly and polite even in difficult situations." (TP 16)
    In summary, it can be said that all 14 test persons were able to locate themselves and also have a partly very concrete idea of what the term "work-related knowledge" means. However, the answer category "For this work I would need further knowledge, which I should acquire." is not clearly defined. This has led to irritation on the one hand, and on the other hand to the fact that the test persons have not been able to locate themselves here even if they have sufficient or even more extensive knowledge to carry out their current work.
  1. Question Topic: Job and career/ Job situation & professional activity
  2. Construct: Self-assessed knowledge compared to professional requirements