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Developing graduate attributes and skills across the institution

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1 Developing graduate attributes and skills across the institution
Future Directions Conference, Aberystwyth, April 2014 Developing graduate attributes and skills across the institution Dr Stephen Bostock Head of the Centre for Learning, Teaching and Assessment Glyndŵr University

2 Development of GAs and Skills - the territory
Graduateness – what is it? QAA, NQF level descriptors The employability agenda, employers’ views Key skills, transferable skills, employability skills Graduate attributes Within or outside programmes/disciplines? Extra-curricular, co-curricular activity Extra-curricular awards, employability awards

3 Example 1: Keele University
2004: 10 employability skills Initially 9, plus languages later Numeracy becomes optional Embedding activities, to a degree. 2009: 10 graduate attributes A mapping between them Embedding GAs but skills not emphasised New extra-curricular workshops on soft skills Extra-curricular award KUSP accredited by ILM

4 Keele U.: “The Distinctive Graduate” - 3 dimensions
Employability: our graduates will be sought after for employment, in whichever career they chose. International perspective: in a global society and economy, our graduates will be able to thrive in and promote a multicultural environment. Sustainability: our graduates will understand the implications for our society of the ways in which they study, work and live - both now and in the future.

5 Keele U.: top level summary of graduate attributes
Make a difference in my communities leadership communication care and respect for others community spirit Make the most of my potential active learning reflection self-development self direction integrity Make sense of my world breadth of knowledge and thinking perspective scholarship enquiry and problem solving independence of thought

6 Keele: the 10 capabilities (GAs)
An open and questioning approach to ideas, demonstrating curiosity, independence of thought and the ability to appreciate a range of perspectives on the natural and social worlds An appreciation of the development and value of your chosen subjects of study, awareness of their contexts, the links between them, and awareness of the provisional and dynamic nature of knowledge Information literacy: the ability to locate, evaluate and synthesise large amounts of frequently conflicting information, ideas and data The ability creatively to solve problems using a range of different approaches and techniques, and to determine which techniques are appropriate for the issue at hand An appreciation of the social, environmental and global implications of your studies and other activities, including recognition of any ethical implications The ability to communicate clearly and effectively in written and verbal forms for different purposes and to a variety of audiences The knowledge, skills, self-confidence and self-awareness actively to pursue your future goals The ability and motivation to participate responsibly and collaboratively as an active citizen in the communities in which you live and work A professional and reflective approach, including qualities of leadership, responsibility, personal integrity, empathy, care and respect for others, accountability and self-regulation The flexibility to thrive in rapidly changing and uncertain external environments and to update skills and knowledge as circumstances require

7 Example 2: Glyndŵr http://glynfo. glyndwr. ac. uk/mod/resource/view
In 2013, consolidating previous ideas: 6 graduate attributes 10 key skills supporting them 59 example learning outcomes

8 6 Glyndŵr Graduate attributes
students are provided with opportunities to develop as expert, enterprising, professional, independent lifelong learners with an international and future-oriented perspective. Expert with a well-structured and detailed knowledge of their subject, and associated skills and attitudes, informed by an understanding of how knowledge in their subject is developed and its current limits. Enterprising with the ability to identify or create opportunities and take advantage of them to launch new and imaginative ventures for economic or social development in the prevailing context Professional with professional attitudes and behaviours in working environments. Independent thinkers with the self-confidence in their personal abilities, based on self-knowledge, to be able to develop, hold and communicate an independent view Lifelong learners with the curiosity and ability to develop intellectually and as a whole person in any employment, academic or social context, and to respond positively to innovation and change With an international and future-oriented perspective with an insight into, and concern for, the global and sustainability implications of their subject area and their personal actions, and an ability to adapt to different international &cultural contexts

9 Glyndŵr key skills (clusters)
 Written, oral and media communication skills Leadership, team working and networking skills Opportunity, creativity and problem solving skills Information technology skills and digital literacy Information management skills Research skills Intercultural and sustainability skills Career management skills Learning to learn Numeracy

10 Example Intended Learning Outcomes As a Glyndŵr Graduate I am able to ...
Written, oral and media communication skills Communicate my ideas effectively in writing in different formats and lengths, for different purposes and audiences, including specialist and general audiences, with clear composition, appropriate vocabulary, and correct grammar and spelling. Critically review my own written work to ensure its effectiveness Cite my sources appropriately. Make presentations that communicate information, ideas and arguments effectively to a variety of audiences, such as to large and small groups, in formal and informal situations. Design and use appropriate visual aids to deliver or enhance a presentation, such as slides, handouts, posters, photographs or videos.

11 S.C.Barrie (2004) A research based approach to generic attributes policy
Found much commonality between institutions. Summarised policy statements as a hierarchy of 3 layers: 3 Enabling attributes of scholarship, global citizenship and lifelong learning 5 Translation level attributes of Information literacy Intellectual autonomy Communication skills Ethical, social, professional understanding Research and inquiry Each with more specific skills

12 Multiple layers of graduateness
Attributes, capabilities and skills are all relevant and serve different functions Aspirational, cultural Development of personality Guiding curriculum design from programme to module Assessing and certificating student abilities in programmes and extra-curricular awards How much should be common to an institution, how much personal?


14 How can the existence of such attributes or skills outcomes be audited, supported and validated?
At Glyndŵr, in progress Now part of programme validation process Mapping the attributes and skills to programmes Offering support to fill any gaps Treating key skills outcomes like any discipline ILO in module specification and assessment A consistent personal development process - PDP needing support from ‘personal tutoring’ and maybe an extracurricular award.

15 Simple mapping in programmes
For each of 10 key skills programme leaders asked: A. Where in the programme will this be taught or supported (if at all)? Give module code or element of the co-curriculum. B. Where do students have the opportunity to practise and develop this skill? C. Where in the programme will this be assessed for a grade (if at all)? D. What potential developments are there within programme to support students developing this skill? E. Is external input or support needed to address a gap or a development? E.g. Careers Centre, library, CLTA

16 Are there graduate attributes distinctive to HE in Wales?
WG policy statements Skills that respond to local needs, employability, that employers value, for jobs & growth Employability , (environmental) Sustainability, Enterprise & Entrepreneurship, Welsh language & culture “supported to be internationally mobile” Level 2 Essential Skills: Communication, Application of Number and ICT Skills and Employability Action Plan for Wales, For our Future, Policy Statement on Higher Education June 2013, Policy statement on skills 2014

17 Is this portfolio of attributes and skills realistic for all students in Welsh universities?

18 How universal can attributes and skills be?
Generic, transferable Specialist, discipline, subject, programme-based For all students Graduate attributes like Glyndŵr’s Key skills like Glyndŵr’s? Foundation in a discipline For some students Personality traits Entrepreneurship Customer focus Numeracy? Modern language? Work experience? Options Projects Research Placements Overseas study/work The problem of embedding Institutional positioning Individual choice, discipline lenses

19 Global graduates? Do we (and our students) want global graduate attributes in Welsh HE? Do our international students want them? (Or want Western, or UK, or Welsh attributes? And that’s why they come to us.) If we want ‘Global graduates’, what attributes are those? Global employability: do we note the needs of overseas employers …

20 Employability Skills Salient to Chinese Marketing Employers (Heffernan 2010)
Dimensions of Employability Sub-Dimensions (i.e. Attributes) 1. Executive Ability - a. Problem Solving, b. Creativity 2. Communication - a. Information collection and analysis b. Persuasive ability c. Information transfer 3. Desirable Persona - a. Reliable b. Trustworthy 4. Working Enterprise - a. Achievement oriented, b. Diligence 5. Professional Knowledge - a. External awareness, b. Subject knowledge 6. Adaptive Skills a. Stress management b. Flexibility to change

21 Classification of Employability for Graduates ( Li et al, 2005)
Inner quality Deal with work Social skills - Honesty and integrity - Analyzing and judging - Expression - Leadership - Hardworking - Logic thinking - Social activity - Devoted to work - Problem solving - Organizing and coordinating - Responsibility - Independency - Initiative - Adaptability - Interpersonal skills - Ambition - Handle change - Learning Entrepreneurship - Team working

22 Conclusion: issues Levels of detail useful for different purposes
Institutions cannot be very different in outputs in if we all prepare global graduates Incompatible employability requirements in countries and sectors Implementation: embedding in programmes, customisation by disciplines, ownership by students Certification: H.E.A.R., extra-curricular awards

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