Skills-based learning is an important part of what is being fostered during your degree, but for many undergraduates it is not “front and centre”. Instead, students tend to focus their attention on the subject matter when they take courses; that is, they’re much more concerned with course content (what’s written in the textbook, or presented in lecture) than they are with transferable job-related skills.
Unfortunately, the reality is that when students have to apply for jobs, questions related to course-related material rarely come up, and a good understanding of course content is almost never the basis for someone deciding to hire you. Instead, employers are much more interested in your skill set – Do you know how to solve problems? Are you a good communicator? Are you a team player? Do you have leadership potential?
My research examines how undergraduates think about the skills that are being fostered during university experiences, both inside and outside the classroom. I’m also interested in how we can improve students’ understanding of career-related skills so that they are in a better position to leverage them when they apply for jobs or post-graduate programs.