Edith Cowan University, Western Australia in association with Khon Kaen University, Thailand and Bansomdejchaopraya Rajabhat University, Thailand.
Purpose – To identify the relevant factors that have significant influences on the vocational education system of Thailand and to propose an approach for future development and/or improvement of the system‘s strategic plan. Design/methodology/approach – To identify and study the major factors that have significant influences on the development of strategic plan, three rounds of surveys using Delphi Technique on 17 individuals comprising students, teachers, administrators, and professionals and 9 well-known experts in the field of vocational education of Thailand were conducted. The approach for strategic plan development was obtained by conducting a group discussion for the 9 experts using Focus Group Technique. The experts then contributed their ideas, which finally led to the approach for the strategic plan development. Findings – Seven major factors to be considered in development of the strategic plan for vocational education of Thailand are politics, economy, society, culture, environment, technology and management and administration. The experts contributed their opinions on how these factors should be directed so that their positive influences on the education system can be guaranteed. Practical implications – The finding of this research provides guideline for educational administrators and policy makers on how the future vocational education of Thailand can be improved. The methodology can also be applied to future researches with minimal modification. Originality/value – The research is recognized as a rigorous effort to reveal and emphasize the problems in Thailand‘s vocational education and also to provide recommendations for their remedial approaches. It demonstrates how two different survey techniques can be mutually applied.