INTEGRATING KEY SKILLS IN INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY DEGREES. ITS ASSESSMENT IN THE STUDENTS
Universidad Europea de Madrid (SPAIN)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2009 Proceedings
Publication year: 2009
Conference name: 2nd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 16-18 November, 2009
Location: Madrid, Spain
Abstract:Enquiries in the employment sector put on record the professionals asked by the technological companies. The growing complexities characterizing diverse aspects of daily life and the manner in which societies prompt the necessity to develop certain qualities and skills which are non-professional for higher education graduates. In other words: the technological sector looks for professionals able to work in a team, with the capacity to analyse and resolve problems, for example, under the constant renewal of knowledge and competencies.
On the other side, the academic world presents a new vision according to the quoted necessities, because the Bologna process aims to create an European Higher Education Area (EHEA) by 2010. The three priorities of the Bologna process are introduction of the three cycle system, quality assurance and recognition of qualifications of periods of study. The first consequence of the Bologna declaration is the valuation of each course through the European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) which is based on the student workload required to achieve the objectives of a programme, in terms of the learning outcomes and competences to be acquired. Consequently, this important repercussion from Bologna involves a great challenge: the necessity to tie the formation with the professional demands based on key skills. This topic will be the main targeted issue for the discussion.
Therefore, the university must emphasize the need to train highly qualified employees that a society requires for its development. So innovation in higher education must clearly develop key skills in the classroom so reflection and changes in the education-learning processes must be made. To fulfil this task a group of readers of the “Information and Communications Technology” area (Computer and Telecommunication Engineering) intend to give a clear guide to the issues relating to the introduction of key employability skills into the university or college curriculum. To our goal, we reflect about three questions which form the outline of this work: how to implement key skills and when?, which activities can be done to promote them?, how to take an assessment and marking criteria?.
In order to answer the first question, we will describe how our group began to engage and make sense to the integration of key skills in ICT (“Information and Communications Technology”) curricula. This was done under the scope of the new active teaching – learning methods and strategies within the EHEA approach.
Then we will give responses to the last two questions, the quoted guide will give assessment criteria grade descriptors and marking schemes of the competencies and will tell how to integrate guidance and feedback to the students. To arrange this goal, we will expose through some self-explanatory templates, several possible educational activities and the most difficult exchange: the assessment of the learning progress on these professional skills which is addressed using self-assessment and peer-assessment tests (or questionnaires) among other useful tools.
Keywords: key skills, assessment, ict curricula, formation for the professional demands.