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ERIC Number: ED557615
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Apr
Pages: 21
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
Employer Perspectives on Competency-Based Education. AEI Series on Competency-Based Higher Education
Franklin, Chip; Lytle, Robert
American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research
Excitement is growing about the potential for competency-based education (CBE) to become a transformative force in higher education. Yet while much of the attention paid to ever-expanding CBE efforts focuses on student and institutional priorities, little effort has been made to understand the perspectives and needs of the employers who must hire CBE credential- bearing graduates. For CBE to achieve its full potential as a disruptive force in higher education, employers must recognize the validity of specific competencies, assigning labor-market value to the discrete skill bundles required for a targeted job opportunity. Only then can the value proposition of competency-based education be complete. The research of the authors into employer perspectives on CBE, using a first-of-its-kind survey of nearly 500 hiring managers at different companies across the country, identifies several inherent obstacles to the expansion and acceptance of broader CBE efforts across the labor market. Some of the key findings include: (1) Overall employer awareness of CBE is low, despite expanding CBE efforts and increasing efforts to engage employers; (2) Hiring managers already aware of CBE had a favorable view of the model and its graduates, but these individuals constituted a small minority. Employers' lack of awareness seems to correlate with a lack of understanding of the potential benefits to employers of hiring students educated through CBE programs; (3) Employers remain generally unable to articulate discrete needs as competencies; they rely instead on hiring generalizations grounded in the traditional idea of "fit" that lack the specificity needed to create an effective competency map; and (4) Some employers believe that this generalized approach helps them hire the right people, but nearly two-thirds think that they could be doing better at identifying students with the specific skill set required for the job.
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Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: American Enterprise Institute for Public Policy Research