Delivering Employability Skills in the Lifelong Learning Sector
eBook - ePub

Delivering Employability Skills in the Lifelong Learning Sector

Ann Gravells

  1. 128 páginas
  2. English
  3. ePUB (apto para móviles)
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eBook - ePub

Delivering Employability Skills in the Lifelong Learning Sector

Ann Gravells

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?Delivering Employability Skills? is an optional unit of the teacher training qualifications. This easy-to-read and accessible text is aimed at trainees undertaking this unit, or existing teachers wishing to refresh their understanding of delivering employability skills as part of CPD. With practical activities and examples throughout, this book supports delivery of the subject in a variety of settings. Please note: the qualification unit content contained in the appendices has since changed, and some legislation mentioned in the book has been updated.

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Adult Education



In this chapter you will learn about:
  • employability skills;
  • employment skills;
  • employability qualifications.
There are activities and examples to help you reflect on the above which will assist your understanding of employability skills and employment skills.
This chapter contributes towards the following scope (S), knowledge (K) and practice (P) aspects of the LLUK professional standards (A–F domains) for teachers, tutors and trainers in the Lifelong Learning Sector:
AS1, AS2;
AK2.2, AK4.2;
AP1.1, AP2.1, AP5.1;
BS2, BS4;
BK2.2, BK2.4, BK2.5;
BP2.5, BP3.5, BP4.1;
CS1, CS2, CS4;
CK1.1, CK1.2, CK3.3, CK3.4, CK4.2;
CP1.1, CP1.2, CP3.3, CP3.4, CP4.2;
FS1, FS3, FS4;
FK1.2, FK3.1, FK4.2;
FP3.1, FP4.2.
The standards can be accessed at:

Employability skills

Employability skills and employment skills could be considered the same; however, there are clear differences between them. Employability skills are the skills that make someone employable, for example, reliability and honesty. Employment skills are the skills required to perform a job effectively, for example, knowledge and experience of the vocational area along with literacy, numeracy and computing skills.
Employability skills can be grouped into knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviour:
  • knowledge – jargon, organisation specific, subject matter;
  • skills – adaptable, hard working, organising, planning, resilient, trustworthy;
  • attitudes – common sense, enthusiasm, initiative, integrity;
  • behaviour – customer service, problem solving, self-management, team work, time management.
The Skills for Business Network (UK Skills) state: Employability defines the knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviours required by individuals to seek, obtain and sustain employment at all levels in the labour market ( p?id=361). Possessing or developing these skills may not be enough. The report Employability and employers: the missing piece of the jigsaw (Tomkin and Hillage, 1999) states: people also need the capability to exploit their assets, to market them and sell them ( Therefore, job search skills, career management, being adaptable to labour market developments and an economic climate, being realistic about opportunities, and a willingness to relocate are also required. Producing a professional looking curriculum vitae (CV), searching for and applying for jobs, and developing interview techniques are all necessary aspects of becoming employable.
According to Dr Peter Hawkins, (1999, p9) to be employed is to be at risk, to be employable is to be secure. He defined four groups of skills: people skills, self-reliance skills, generalist skills and specialist skills. Developing skills such as these will help your learners become more employable, and hopefully gain job security. In an economic climate, job security cannot be guaranteed. Years ago, the term a job for life was a reality. People would obtain employment after leaving school and stay with the same employer until retirement, often leaving with a good pension. Now, a job cannot be guaranteed and redundancy and short-term contracts are a regular occurrence. There are often more people applying for jobs than there are jobs available. People move to other areas of the country or abroad, and foreign workers come into this country looking for employment, creating competition for the jobs that are available. For economic reasons, many companies don’t hold a reserve of labour; therefore, if a member of staff is absent, another member of staff will need to cover their job as well as carry out their own, or the job just won’t get done. However, having skills which add value to a person’s job role may help them to gain and sustain employment.
Examples of Hawkins’s (ibid) four groups of skills are:
  • people skills – communication, cultural awareness, team work, leadership;
  • self-reliance skills – action planning, initiative, networking;
  • generalist – commitment, flexibility, problem solving;
  • specialist – organisation knowledge, technical skills and specific knowledge.
The following table shows some ways you could help encourage and develop these skills with your learners.
Table 1.1 Developing Hawkins’s four groups of skills with learners
Skill groups
How learners could develop these skills
people skills
drama club;
fundraising voluntary work;
charity work;
guide/scout/brownie/cub leader;
member of an orchestra;
sport, for example, football, netball, hockey;
working in a shop or restaurant.
self-reliance skills
amateur dramatics;
debating society;
Duke of Edinburgh Award;
participating in competitive sport;
playing publicly in a band;
public speaking; Young Enterprise Award.
generalist skills
library/book clubs;
member of local association, club or society;
Mensa membership;
project work.
specialist skills
European Computer Driving Licence (ECDL);
first aid at work qualification;
language interpretation;
learning a new language;
taking relevant qualifications;
web page design;
writing for a newspaper or magazine.
Look at table 1.1 above consider and note other opportunities which could develop the four skill groups. Hold discussions with your learners to help them list the skills they feel employers require and how they could develop them.
The Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA) now known as QCDA, have developed the Personal Learning and Thinking Skills (PLTS) Framework, which, together with the functional skills of English, maths, and Information Communication Technology (ICT) covers the areas of competence that are most often demanded by employers. Integrating these skills into your delivery will provide your learners with a platform for employability and further learning. The skills are:
  • team working;
  • independent enquiry;
  • self-management;
  • reflective learning;
  • effective participation;
  • creative thinking.
The aim is to embed these skills across all areas of the curriculum for young people in secondary education and for adults. These skills fit well with employability skills, particularly in relation to team working and self-management.
If you are working with learners who are currently employed, or graduates seeking to develop their skills, you will need to help them realise their current skills as well as the skills they may be lacking. The definition of employability that underpins the work of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) is:
A set of skills, knowledge and personal attributes that make an individual more likely to secure and be successful in their chosen occupation(s) to the benefit of themselves, the workforce, the community and the economy.
(Yorke and Knight, 2006, p3)
This definition fits well for all ages of learners. However, you may be working with learners with different past experiences of employment and/or unemployment. Being unemployed can be demoralising and you may need to guide your learners towards different career opportunities. As a deliverer of employability skills, you will want your learners to gain employment, feel secure and become successful. You can do this by treating your learners as individuals and helping them realise their current skills, and future opportunities that could be open to them.
Vijay is due to be made redundant in three months from a manufacturing organisation, which is closing down in a recession. He has worked there for 20 years on the production line, never having had any experience elsewhere. His employer has provided him with the opportunity to attend an Employability Skills programme. His teacher helped him make a list of his current skills (good timekeeper, honest, reliable, efficient), however, he has realised he is lacking in team work, making decisions, and creative thinking. He has never had the opportunity to take his driving test, which he can now. Vijay is being positive and treating his redundancy as a challenge to learn something new and use skills he hasn’t had the opportunity to use previously.
Knight ...


  1. Cover
  2. Title
  3. Copyright
  4. Contents
  5. Acknowledgements
  6. Author statement
  7. Introduction
  8. 1 Employability skills and employment skills
  9. 2 Personal qualities, skills and competencies needed for employability skills delivery
  10. 3 Planning and delivering creative, innovative and inclusive sessions
  11. 4 The training environment and personal presentation skills
  12. 5 Reflecting the needs of the workplace
  13. 6 Personal and professional development
  14. 7 Sample activities to carry out with learners
  15. Appendix 1 Delivering employability skills unit
  16. Appendix 2 Tips for delivering employability skills
  17. Appendix 3 Work placement diary
  18. Appendix 4 Scheme of work
  19. Appendix 5 Session plan
  20. Appendix 6 Personal development plan
  21. Appendix 7 Continuing professional development record
  22. Appendix 8 Reflective learning journal
  23. Index
Estilos de citas para Delivering Employability Skills in the Lifelong Learning Sector

APA 6 Citation

Gravells, A. (2010). Delivering Employability Skills in the Lifelong Learning Sector (1st ed.). SAGE Publications. Retrieved from (Original work published 2010)

Chicago Citation

Gravells, Ann. (2010) 2010. Delivering Employability Skills in the Lifelong Learning Sector. 1st ed. SAGE Publications.

Harvard Citation

Gravells, A. (2010) Delivering Employability Skills in the Lifelong Learning Sector. 1st edn. SAGE Publications. Available at: (Accessed: 14 October 2022).

MLA 7 Citation

Gravells, Ann. Delivering Employability Skills in the Lifelong Learning Sector. 1st ed. SAGE Publications, 2010. Web. 14 Oct. 2022.