Theses Master's

College Student Perspectives on Employable Skills that Matter

Mata, Michele

The purpose of this study is to determine whether two types of higher education curricula (open and core curriculum) affect students’ importance of 38 employable skills within their respective institutions. Through mixed methodological methods, 88 students from an elite university with an open curriculum and 78 students from an elite university with a core curriculum answered survey questions. Three students with an open curriculum were interviewed and two students with a core curriculum were interviewed. The findings indicate there are differences in students’ importance of employable skills based on internal (e.g. student membership) and external factors (e.g. demographics). In particular, first-generation college students and college grade level showed the most differences within their groups in contrasting skill importance. The results demonstrate that even though curriculum is important, it is not the only factor in students’ importance of employability skills.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Sociology and Education
M.A., Teachers College, Columbia University
Published Here
July 10, 2019