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ERIC Number: EJ1066990
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 28
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0040-0912
Employability Skills: Perspectives from a Knowledge-Intensive Industry
Collet, Chris; Hine, Damian; du Plessis, Karen
Education & Training, v57 n5 p532-559 2015
Purpose: While the global education debate remains focused on graduate skills and employability, the absence of a shared language between student, academic and industry stakeholder groups means that defining industry skills requirements is both essential and difficult. The purpose of this paper is to assess graduate skills requirements in a knowledge-intensive industry from a demand perspective as distinct from a curriculum (supply) viewpoint. Design/methodology/approach: Skills items were derived from a breadth of disciplines across academic, policy and industry literature. CEOs and senior managers in the innovation and commercialisation industry were surveyed regarding perceptions of skills in graduates and skills in demand by the firm. Two rounds of exploratory factor analyses were undertaken to examine employers' perceptions of the skills gap. Findings: First-order analysis resolved ten broad constructs that represent cognitive, interpersonal and intrapersonal skills domains as applied in this industry. Knowledge, leadership and interprofessional collaboration feature as prominent skills. Second-order analysis revealed employers' perceptions of graduate skills specifically centre on organisational fit and organisational success. An over-arching theme relates to performance of the individual in organisations. Research limitations/implications: The findings suggest that the discourse on employability and the design of curriculum need to shift from instilling lists of skills towards enabling graduates to perform in a diversity of workplace contexts and expectations centred on organisational purpose. Originality/value: In contrast to the heterogeneous nature of industry surveys, the authors targeted a homogenous sector that is representative of knowledge-intensive industries. This study contributes to the broader stakeholder dialogue of the value and application of graduate skills in this and other industry sectors.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A