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ERIC Number: ED530530
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012-Mar
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 5
ISSN: ISSN-1526-2049
Employer Perceptions of Associate Degrees: Information Technology Technicians in Detroit and Seattle. CCRC Brief. Number 56
Van Noy, Michelle; Jacobs, James
Community College Research Center, Columbia University
Policymakers, educators, and the public agree that postsecondary credentials are crucial for economic success, and high school graduates and displaced workers are increasingly seeking credentials at community colleges. Yet little attention has been paid to understanding how credentials align with employer needs and how community college programs that lead to a credential can be more effectively aligned with local labor market needs. This Brief, based on a study conducted by the Community College Research Center (CCRC), provides insight into employer perceptions of associate and bachelor's degrees relative to skills and qualities they seek in job candidates. Past investigations of the value of credentials have typically focused on earnings and have usually been conducted nationally or at the state level; they have rarely considered the specific qualities employers find valuable in credential holders or the role of local labor markets in shaping employer perceptions of credentials and of community college education. To help fill this research gap, the study reported here focuses on the employment needs and expectations of employers in two very different local labor markets: one in Detroit, the other in Seattle. Specifically, the authors sought to demonstrate what it means for an associate degree to have value in the labor market by examining Detroit and Seattle employers' perceptions of it compared with the bachelor's degree in these two local labor markets that employ significant numbers of information technology (IT) technicians. [For related report, "Employer Perceptions of Associate Degrees in Local Labor Markets: A Case Study of the Employment of Information Technology Technicians in Detroit and Seattle. CCRC Working Paper No. 39," see ED529625.]
Community College Research Center. Available from: CCRC Publications. Teachers College, Columbia University, 525 West 120th Street Box 174, New York, NY 10027. Tel: 212-678-3091; Fax: 212-678-3699; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education; Two Year Colleges
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: National Science Foundation
Authoring Institution: Columbia University, Community College Research Center
Identifiers - Location: Michigan; Washington