EVALUATION OF SOFT SKILLS THROUGH RUBRICS IN SUBJECTS RELATED TO LIFE SCIENCES

The process of convergence towards the European Higher Education Area has highlighted the importance of soft skills for University Education. These skills provide the students with the capacity of innovation and adaptation to change, being their acquisition necessary for professional life. At the Universitat Politècnica de València (UPV, Spain), 13 soft skills have been proposed, according to both current regulations and accreditation agencies. In our educational innovation working group, we study different methods of teaching and evaluating these outcomes in subjects related to the Life Sciences. In particular, in this work we present a proposal to evaluate soft skills by using rubrics.

The proposal consists in evaluating the skill “Ethical, environmental and professional responsibility” through an e-rubric completed by lab mates during the laboratory sessions. This skill aims to obtain knowledge, abilities, and attitudes useful to interact with the environment, from an ethical, responsible and sustainable point of view. This outcome must be trained and assessed in the subject “Molecular Biochemistry”, which is included in the Biotechnology program at the UPV.

The results obtained through the rubric are compared with those achieved in ad hoc questions evaluated by the supervisor in the final exam. All this information is analyzed and discussed with the objective of improving the activity for future years. The subjects related to Life Sciences and, in particular, their credits of laboratory and field studies, are a suitable framework for the acquisition of soft skills.