Why We Do This
Social-emotional skills – sometimes called “soft skills” or “employability skills” – have become increasingly valued in the 21st century workplace.
Research shows they are as important as academic learning to lifelong success and wellbeing.
Until now, there has been little agreement on how to teach, assess and document these skills. SkillSense bridges that gap and supports this lifelong journey by establishing common definitions, language and tools for improvement to be used by individuals, educators and employers.
How We Do It
Drawing on input by K-12 districts, educational agencies, higher-education institutions, and employers in West Michigan, SkillSense has identified an array of skills that are essential to success in school and career.
The collaborative process of SkillSense addresses the longstanding challenge of defining and measuring skills such as responsibility, decisiveness and teamwork.
This work is supported by a variety of research demonstrating the importance of social-emotional learning.
In addition, it shows promising alignment with ongoing international research by OECD – the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development. The OECD research is based on the “big five” domains of Task Performance, Emotional Regulation, Collaboration, Open-Mindedness and Engaging with Others. The OECD research adds credibility to and will continue to inform the SkillSense model.
What We Do: The Skills in SkillSense
The “big five” domains being studied by the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development have multiple parallels to the 12 skills identified by collaborators in West Michigan: