Proper post-secondary vocational training is key to skills and job creation could
Improving the quality of post-secondary vocational training is a key factor in ensuring long-term skill availability and job creation opportunities in today’s highly-demanding jobs market, a recent report by the OECD has argued.
The “Skills Beyond School: Synthesis Report” recently released by the organization points out that the most basic vocational courses cannot teach the higher level skills needed in an increasing number of jobs in fast-growing sectors, such as healthcare technicians and junior managers.
England and Northern Ireland stand out as countries where, relative both to other countries and to potential demand, there is limited provision of postsecondary vocational training, potentially leading to a shortage of mid-level skills.
The report also sets out a series of useful guidelines for improving the quality of post-secondary vocational programmes. These include:
– All professional education and training programmes should include some work-based learning as a condition of receiving government funding. This work-based learning should be systematic, quality-assured and credit-bearing.
– Ensure that the workforce in professional training institutions benefit from a strong blend of pedagogical skills, industry experience and academic knowledge. Adapt qualification requirements to that end.
– Assess students’ basic skills at the start of programmes and integrate basic skills development into professional programmes. This will ensure students leave programmes with essential literacy and numeracy skills that the 2013 OECD Survey of Adult Skills revealed that many adults lacked.
– Engage industry stakeholders and develop and sustain vocational systems in close partnership with those stakeholders.
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