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A Skills Perception Inventory for Evaluating Postgraduate Transferable Skills Development

Alpay, E and Walsh, E (2008) A Skills Perception Inventory for Evaluating Postgraduate Transferable Skills Development Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 33 (6). pp. 581-598.

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This article reports on the development, application and results of a skills evaluation inventory which was specifically designed to provide quantitative feedback on the effects of a three-day residential training course attended by PhD students early in their research careers. The course was developed at Imperial College London, partly in response to the "Roberts" agenda, which has highlighted the importance of transferable skills to the future careers of researchers. The questionnaire aims to measure student perceptions of their skill levels in four key areas. In addition a scale was included to measure changes in their general attitudes towards the benefits or otherwise of training in transferable skills. The inventory was administered at the very beginning and end of the course. Statistical analysis was used to refine the inventory and as a result all five scales were found to have good reliability. The results showed that after attending the course there were statistically significant increases in the participants' perceived levels of skill in each area and a more positive attitude to skills development courses overall was demonstrated. Furthermore, differences in skill perceptions were observed depending on the gender and residential status of researchers. For example, female researchers were found to have generally lower levels of confidence than males, specifically for pre-course beliefs on group work and communications skills. A further benefit is that the findings have helped to win respect and support for continued investment in the residential course programme. (Contains 2 figures, 4 tables and 3 notes.)

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Surrey research (other units)
Authors :
Walsh, E
Date : 2008
Uncontrolled Keywords : England (London)
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 17 May 2017 11:32
Last Modified : 24 Jan 2020 20:58

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