ASSESSING STUDENTS’ READINESS TO RESEARCH ACTIVITIES USING THE HACKATHON ECOSYSTEM TOOLKIT
Keywords:Hackathon ecosystem, readiness, research activities, students, university
The article seeks to provide insights into the growing role of the research component within the higher education system as a key element in ensuring quality education and boosting student talent and potential. Given that modern society imposes new demands for a more skilled workforce, future professionals must demonstrate not only high-level professional competencies but also display well developed cognitive skills, independence, initiative and creative thinking. In the context of this study, a research competence is viewed as an integral personality trait which translates into the capacity and willingness to resolve research problems independently, mastering of research technology skills, recognition of the value of research and the ability to use it in the professional business settings. The dominant methodology of the study is to build a linear mathematical model that allows evaluating the readiness of student and post-graduates to conduct a research. The developed model provides the minimum, maximum and threshold values as well as diagnostic assessment indicators of the student readiness to perform research. In addition, the study presents a method to assess the readiness of student and post-graduates to research activities which was tested on the basis of the Hackathon Ecosystem of the Kyiv National University of Technologies and Design. The survey held has revealed the structure of a research competence that consists of ten main elements (competencies) of readiness of student and post-graduates to conduct research. Processing the results of the questionnaire has enabled to calculate the weight of each element, their mathematical expectation values, the density of probability distribution, and the average value of all the necessary characteristics for research. The calculation results have verified that the priority competencies of student and post-graduates are motivation to research and the level of academic training. University student and post-graduate engagement into research activities is an integral part of academic training to tackle professional issues. Within the study process, student research practices involve problem-based learning, a professional focus of training through a wide range of problem solving activities, as well as encouraging enhanced creativity. The findings demonstrate that making use of the University Hackathon ecosystem tools will contribute to identifying the students’ and post-graduates’ propensity to research activities, building relevant skills and abilities of research competence.