Preparing graduates for employability is increasingly highlighted as an aim for universities. The sigma Network’s Employability SIG was established to support the development of students’ employability skills in three main ways:
- Creation of resources to support students’ preparedness for taking employers’ psychometric tests (numeracy and non-verbal reasoning) as well as Numerical Professional Skills Tests for those going into teaching. They include sample tests with full solutions and PowerPoint slides with an overview of each test and sample questions. A list of available websites and books is also available providing more information and sample tests for practice. Resources are suitable for individual study or for use in tutor-led workshops and will be made available online.
- A guide for staff on how to develop student employability through the curriculum (e.g. reflection/action planning, communication, team working) including suggestions for successful strategies, ‘top tips’ etc. The particular focus here is on the employability of students taking STEM subjects.
- A collection of short case studies of successful practice in implementing employability with HE students. The focus is on numerical reasoning for all students plus wider employability skills for STEM students.
Outcomes relating to the above objectives:
- Resources for item one have been created and peer-reviewed. In September 2018 they were made available to the maths support community on the mathcentre website: http://www.mathcentre.ac.uk/courses/employability/graduate-numeracy/
- Items two and three were completed in September 2017 and the outputs have been published in a booklet Employability development for HE mathematics and statistics: case studies of successful practice, (ISBN 978-1-84387-414-0), which is available for free download.
- A sigma Network event to promote Employability and the work of the SIG was held at Sheffield Hallam University in February 2018. Materials and presentations are available here.
- Ensuring resources are up-to-date (website links are live and information is still relevant),
- Reviewing new resources,
- Accepting new resources for online publication,
- Welcoming new members and identifying further projects..
Employability SIG members:
Chair: Kinga Zaczek (Royal Holloway, University of London) Kinga.Zaczek@royalholloway.ac.uk
Jonathan Cole (Queen’s University Belfast)
Anthea Cowen (University of Bedfordshire)
Dave Faulkner (University of Hertfordshire)
Karen Symons (De Montfort University)
Frances Whalley (University of Hertfordshire)
Many thanks to the former Employability SIG members for their contributions:
Jeff Waldock (Sheffield Hallam University)
Peter Rowlett (Sheffield Hallam University)
Noel-Ann Bradshaw (University of Greenwich)
Laura Hooke (Loughborough University in London)
The terms of reference of the Employability SIG are available here.