Linda Suskie

 A Common Sense Appr​oach to Assessment in Higher Education


What do students most need to learn today?

Posted on July 21, 2015 at 6:55 AM

Over the last few years there have been a number of studies of the knowledge, skills, and competencies that employers seek in new hires. The results have varied because many of the studies have asked employers to choose from a predetermined list, and those lists can vary considerably. But last year, when I was working on my book Five Dimensions of Quality: A Common Sense Guide to Accreditation and Accountability, I reviewed those studies and found persistent mention of a number of competencies.

Now some new surveys—one sponsored by AAC&U and others mentioned in a piece by Margaret Andrews in University World News—have reinforced what I found. The following competencies seem most valued by employers, in roughly the following order:

• Teamwork and collaboration

• Communication

• Real-world problem solving

• Evaluating information and conclusions

• Flexibility and adaptability to change

• Creativity and innovation

• Working with people from diverse cultural backgrounds

• Ethical judgment

• Understanding numbers and statistics

How well are your curricula designed—and your faculty prepared and equipped—to help students develop these skills?

Categories: Learning goals