New Generation of Engineers

A world after Covid-19 is a very different one. In our current climate new engineering recruits are in decline. The younger population are losing interest in the automotive industry.

Fleet News have published an article discussing the findings of an IMI survey about the ‘Perception of the Automotive Sector.’ The findings showed that more than half of 16-18yr olds already have a clear career plan- youth in key stage 3 and 4 are motivated by making the world a better place. They found that only 16% of this survey have considered automotive as a career option. (Roberts, 2022)

Fleet discuss in this article that it is common misconceptions and lack of understanding that are key factors in the decline in interest. ‘Influencer respondents reported that a lack of local placements meant they were unable to satisfy young people open to pursuing a career in the automotive sector.’ (Roberts, 2022) Which is proof that the automotive industry requires a specific learning type to teach and inspire people about this industry. 

Mark D. Threeton and Richard A. Walter conducted a study in 2009 using Kolb & Kolb work in 2006 about learning styles. Kolb discuss that learning is a process but should not be assessed in terms of outcomes. ‘In the process of learning one is called upon to move back and forth between opposing modes of reflection and action and feeling and thinking.’ (Kolb & Kolb, 2006) This highlights the importance of self-motivation and varied learning techniques when understand a topic.

Using this work Threeton and Walter conducted an experiment where they assessed individual learning styles in a range of people from undergraduates to full-time workers. They split the learning styles into 4. Accommodating – people that can learn mainly from hands-on experience. Diverging - people that are best at reviewing situations from different perspectives. Converging - people that are best at finding practical uses for ideas and theories. Assimilating - people that are best at understanding the information and putting it into logical form (Kolb & Kolb, 2006)


From their report Threeton and Walter found that all learning styles were represented within the sample. The Accommodating style was most highly represented (39.8%), while the Assimilating was the least (16.5%). An overwhelming majority (166 of 176) of the students were planning to pursue a postgraduate auto-tech career. Of those planning to pursue an auto-tech career, 66 (40%) were Accommodating style, 35 (21%) Diverging, 38 (22.8%) Converging, and 27 (16.2%) Assimilating. (Threeton & Walter) Overall, this explains to us that, for the automotive industry students learn best when using the accommodating style. Hands on experiences accompanied with some theory is the most successful way to understand the industry.

As Steve Nash, CEO of the IMI, said “Without doubt, more needs to be done to attract young blood into the UK’s automotive sector” (Roberts, 2022). More apprenticeships need to be available for the younger generation to be able to pursue a career in the automotive world.

Here at Tec Reports this is one thing we pride ourselves on. We want to work with the next generation to teach them the ins and outs of engineering, giving them hands on experience. We want to work with them closely to fuel their passion for engineering. That is why we take on apprenticeships and provide free courses for all our engineers to allow them to keep developing on their own learning journey. This industry is a continuous learning curve- technology is always advancing and this requires our knowledge to expand with it.

We want to support the new generation and keep our automotive industry thriving.




Roberts, G. (2022) Skills crisis warning for UK Automotive Sector, Fleet News. Available at: (Accessed: 05 September 2023).

Kolb, A. and Kolb, D. (2006) Learning styles and learning spaces: A review of the multidisciplinary ..., ResearchGate. Available at: (Accessed: 05 September 2023).

Threeton, M. and Walter, R. (no date) Automotive Technology Student Learning Styles and their implications for Faculty, Unknown. Available at: (Accessed: 05 September 2023).