N 584 Skills Development and Knowledge
Please consider how you have developed the knowledge, skills, and attitudes that enable your achievement of the Course Goals listed in the syllabus. Then write a reflection of minimum of 1000 words describing how this course has helped you achieve these goals. Finally, chose one assignment that you feel represents your best learning (artifact) in the course. Take a few minutes to revise it, according to comments from your professor. Combine these into one document.
Finally, submit the assignment into the drop-box and save a copy of it in a folder on your personal computer.
Global mega trends such as the rising role of technology, climate change, demographic shifts, urbanization, and the globalization of value chains are changing the nature of work and skills demands. To succeed in the 21st century labor market, one needs a comprehensive skill set composed of:
Cognitive skills, which encompass the ability to understand complex ideas, adapt effectively to the environment, learn from experience, and reason. Foundational literacy and numeracy as well as creativity, critical thinking, and problem-solving are cognitive skills.
Socio-emotional skills, which describe the ability to navigate interpersonal and social situations effectively, and include leadership, teamwork, self-control, and grit.
Technical skills, which refer to the acquired knowledge, expertise, and interactions needed to perform a specific task, including the mastery of required materials, tools, or technologies.
Digital skills, which are cross-cutting and draw on all of the above skills, and describe the ability to access, manage, understand, integrate, communicate, evaluate, and create information safely and appropriately.
The development of skills can contribute to structural transformation and economic growth by enhancing employability and labor productivity and helping countries to become more competitive. Investment in a high-quality workforce can create a virtuous cycle, where relevant and quality skills enable productivity growth and foreign direct investment, which result in more and better jobs for the current workforce and more public and private investment in the education and training system. This, in turn, increases the employability and productivity for both the current and future workforce.
Yet, most countries continue to struggle in delivering on the promise of skills development. There are huge gaps in basic literacy and numeracy of working-age populations, as 750 million people aged 15+ (or 18 percent of the global population) report being unable to read and write, with estimates being nearly twice as large if literacy is measured through direct assessments. Large-scale international assessments of adult skills generally point to skills mismatches as well as large variation in the returns to education across fields of study, institutions, and population groups. Employers in many developing countries report that a lack of skilled workers is a major and increasing bottleneck for their operations, affecting their capacity to innovate.
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought the pre-crisis vision of equitable, relevant, and quality skills development into sharper relief, adding unforeseen urgency to the calls for reform and highlighting the huge costs of inaction.