ERIC Number: ED343640
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992-Apr-30
Skill Standards and Certification Issues.
America's more than 1,200 community, technical, and junior colleges constitute the largest branch of higher education in the country. Two-year colleges are subjected to rigorous institutional accreditation standards and procedures by regional accrediting bodies. At least 80% of their students are already in the workforce, and they serve the majority of women and persons of color pursuing higher education today. The employer community increasingly requests broadly educated new employees adaptable to the rapid changes of the workplace. In 1988, the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) identified the fundamental educational standards necessary for the U.S. workforce to be competitive. These standards would require that American workers have the following skills: (1) knowing how to learn; (2) competence in reading, writing, and computation; (3) listening and oral communication skills; (4) creative thinking and problem solving; (5) self-esteem, goal-setting, and career development; (6) interpersonal skills; and (7) organizational effectiveness and leadership. These skills should be the underpinning of a broad based, flexible, and voluntary system of standards, perhaps modeled on the Defense Department-sponsored Servicemembers Opportunity Colleges, that would permit greater transferability of credits for an increasingly mobile workforce. Today, many industries already require the Associate Degree as the basis for employment. To make community colleges the presumptive deliverer of workforce development would simply affirm what is already happening in most states. (JSP)
Descriptors: Academic Standards, College Role, Community Colleges, Educational Needs, Educational Objectives, Employment Qualifications, Government School Relationship, Job Skills, Labor Force Development, School Business Relationship, Trade and Industrial Education, Two Year Colleges, Vocational Education, Workplace Literacy
Publication Type: Reports - General; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Testimony delivered to the Department of Labor, Department of Education, and National Advisory Commission on Work-Based Learning on behalf of the American Association of Community and Junior Colleges.