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SOFT SKILLS: Connecting Classroom to Careers. Last Time We Met…. Soft Skills Are:. Soft Skills Are Not:. Formal or technical knowledge. Skills, abilities and traits that pertain to personality, attitude, and behavior. What Industry Thinks.

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Presentation Transcript
last time we met
Last Time We Met…

Soft Skills Are:

Soft Skills Are Not:

Formal or technical knowledge

  • Skills, abilities and traits that pertain to personality, attitude, and behavior
what industry thinks
What Industry Thinks
  • Technical skills and computer literacy are assumed!
what industry wants
What Industry Wants
  • Skill sets that include:
  • Oral and written communication skill
  • Critical thinking ability
  • Problem-solving resourcefulness
  • Ability to work productively on a team
what our students want
What Our Students Want
  • Meaningful employment
  • Competitive advantage in today’s economy
  • Help with soft skills
one solution soft skills at work
One Solution: Soft Skills at Work
  • Workbook and Video Package
  • Published by Cengage
  • Contains practical guidance with videos and personal reflection “callout boxes”
our experience at northern arizona university
Our Experience at Northern Arizona University
  • Implemented “Soft Skills at Work”
  • Used in Intro CIS course
  • Close to 1,000 students Fall 08
  • Topics covered:
  • Resumes, attire, online persona management, written communication, team dynamics and generational differences, presentation basics
cis course implementation
CIS Course Implementation
  • Course Coverage
  • Part lecture, part lab (Office 2007)
  • Soft Skills Integration
  • Replaced some critical thinking cases
  • Covered all 5 workbook/video chapters by spacing them out over 15 weeks
what did the students do
What Did the Students Do?
  • Completed the in-text “personal reflection” boxes
  • Example:
  • Watched and critiqued the accompanying videos
  • Submitted end-of-chapter exercises
for example
For Example…
  • Chapters 4 and 5
  • Chapter 4 Exercise: Planning the Next Training Meeting (in teams)
  • Had to research locations
  • Created a Word document with summary
  • Prepared an Excel worksheet for all locations
  • Required team coordination on formatting, data collection and reporting
  • Chapter 5
  • Teams selected and presented one location to the class
  • Had to “dress the part”
  • Submitted Word, Excel and PPT documents
moment of truth student survey
Moment of Truth: Student Survey
  • Student majors:
  • Business
  • Accounting, Finance, Advertising, Marketing, Management, CIS
  • Hotel and restaurant management
  • Elementary education
  • Forestry, geology
  • Entrepreneur /own business
  • Health professions
  • Dental, speech, medical, PT
moment of truth student feedback
Moment of Truth: Student Feedback
  • Students were asked to rate topics in terms of how helpful it will be in the future.
  • Resumes and interviewing skills:
  • 97%
  • (Somewhat to very helpful)
moment of truth student feedback14
Moment of Truth: Student Feedback
  • Online persona management, identify theft and cyberstalking:
  • 88%
moment of truth student feedback15
Moment of Truth: Student Feedback
  • Written communication skills, e-mail/cell/text message etiquette:
  • 90%
moment of truth student feedback16
Moment of Truth: Student Feedback
  • Team dynamics and generational differences:
  • 89%
moment of truth student feedback17
Moment of Truth: Student Feedback
  • Presentation skills:
  • 94%
some of the comments related to the chapter contents
Some of the Comments Related to the Chapter Contents
  • I need to clean up my online persona – I have pictures out there I’d rather not be public!
  • It helped me fix what was wrong with my resume’
  • I found things when I “googled” myself that surprised me!
  • Made me realize that everyone on a team has a different personality but can still contribute
  • These are life skills I will use all the time
  • It reminded me how important basic grammar and etiquette are!
moment of truth student feedback19
Moment of Truth: Student Feedback
  • Students were asked to evaluate how much they learned from each chapter’s video episode.
  • Resumes and interviewing skills:
  • 72%
  • (Moderate to tremendous amount)
moment of truth student feedback20
Moment of Truth: Student Feedback
  • What the recruiter does back at the office:
  • 83%
moment of truth student feedback21
Moment of Truth: Student Feedback
  • Preparing for the first big writing assignment on the job:
  • 81%
moment of truth student feedback22
Moment of Truth: Student Feedback
  • Working with a dysfunctional team:
  • 83%
moment of truth student feedback23
Moment of Truth: Student Feedback
  • Making an effective presentation:
  • 86%
some of the comments related to the videos
Some of the Comments Related to the Videos
  • I noticed how people acted – what worked and what didn’t. I don’t think I would have caught it if I didn’t actually see it.
  • As soon as you walk in the building, you are being evaluated on how you present and carry yourself.
  • I need to be prepared – do my research, dress appropriately, and act professionally if I want to get and keep my job.
  • I need to speak up and not assume that people will know I am qualified just by looking at me or reading my resume’.
students enjoyed
Students Enjoyed…
  • The resume and interviewing skills chapter and videos the most
  • (but the others received votes as well)
would we do it again
Would We Do It Again?
  • Yes! We are!
  • What we observed (besides what the students said in their comments):
  • E-mail messages were written with more care
  • Not everyone knows what an executive summary is
  • Professional business casual attire does not include sneakers, jeans and t-shirts
career connection
Career Connection
  • Students caught on pretty quickly
  • Recognize need for advantage in today’s competitive job market
  • Recruiter feedback is positive
wrap up
Wrap Up
  • The workbook and videos are available now – see your sales rep!
  • Questions?