Empirical research studies of practicing engineers: a mapping review of journal articles 2000–2018
Empirical research on practicing engineers can inform engineering education as it provides evidence for what engineering students ought to learn. Whilst there has been a growing interest and scholarship in this area, there has not been any systematic attempt to map the empirical research on practicing engineers and develop an agenda for research on engineering practice. To address this gap, we conducted a mapping review of empirical research studies of practicing engineers. We limited our search to studies published in peer-reviewed journal articles since 2000 and identified 187 papers. We used inductive content analysis to categorise the papers intofive research themes: 1) learning in the workplace, 2) competencies and attributes needed for practice, 3) activities undertaken by engineers, 4) diversity, and 5) engineers’ identity. For each theme, we report common findings and gaps that can inform future research.