1 Universidad Francisco de Vitoria (SPAIN)
2 Universidad Complutense de Madrid (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: INTED2020 Proceedings
Publication year: 2020
Pages: 7282-7286
ISBN: 978-84-09-17939-8
ISSN: 2340-1079
doi: 10.21125/inted.2020.1920
Conference name: 14th International Technology, Education and Development Conference
Dates: 2-4 March, 2020
Location: Valencia, Spain
Since McClelland (1973) affirmed that intelligence, understood as an intellectual quotient, and knowledge cannot guarantee excellence, competences (also called skills) begin to take a relevant role, especially at the workplace.

McClelland (1973) defines competencies as those characteristics and ways of doing things of those who present excellent performance.
Extending the definition and taking into account the European Higher Education Area we can say that there are two main types of competences:
- the technical competences, those specific to a certain area of knowledge or activity.
- generic or transversal competences, those common to different areas of knowledge or activity.

In this sense, the business area, soon realizes the impact of a worker who has generic skills developed in the performance of their functions (and therefore in the results of the company) in comparison with a worker who does not have so developed.
But what about generic skills?

The theory of McClelland (1973) affirm that these skills make a significant difference in the excellent performance of a worker. In that sense, the companies have already been aware of this reality for more than 45 years and have been responding to it through recruitment experts consultants or human resources departments.

Therefore, it is a fact that companies value the importance of these skills for the best job performance; although not only; Crespí (2018) states that the development of these skills is necessary for life, not only for work. And furthermore, as we develop them, more we get in the way of our own excellence and happiness.

Understanding that generic skills are so necessary from a personal and professional point of view, how do we develop them?
Schools and universities begin to be aware of the importance of developing these competences and propose that the students acquire them through the technical subjects (by the hand of non-expert teachers). Therefore, we cannot find any specific subject for its development; and therefore, its development is less than what could be if there were specific subjects for its development.

The Francisco de Vitoria University (UFV) advocates for an integral and personal education, and in this sense understands the importance of forming not only technical skills, but also generic ones. In this sense, it raises subjects to develop generic competences, from the first year to the last course of each degree.
In first grade, all students attend the subject's Personal Skills and Competences with the intention of specifically developing generic skills such as personal knowledge, proactivity, teamwork, communication, time management, conflict management and leadership.

The subject has a large teaching team, consisting of:
- the teacher who develops mainly the most interpersonal skills with students, who are divided into teams, and who work under the problem-based learning technique.
- Mentors-coaches, who mainly develop the most intrapersonal skills with each student, who are treated individually.

This subject, like others within the UFV university plan, is fully oriented to generic skills and their development in order to contribute on the personal and professional excellence of each of our students, so that they can improve the society to the that they belong.
Throughout the paper we will demonstrate how this subject effectively manages to increase the degree of development of these generic competences.
Generic skills, development, subject, university, competences, specific skills.