McKendree University recently acknowledged the remarkable impact of JAKAPA on our college students. Dr. Jean M. Scheller-Sampson, Chair of the School of Business and Professor
Traditionally, schools have focused on technical and academic skills.
Students graduate with credentials and transcripts meant to show their readiness for their futures. But our students are not ready for work. Nearly three-quarters of employers say they cannot find graduates with sufficient soft skills. Why not? Because schools are not teaching and assessing soft skills in a strategic way.
Soft Skills? What are those
There are many names for soft skills and many frameworks that try to explain what they are. Essentially, soft skills are self-management skills, emotional resilience skills, thinking skills and people skills. Creating a common language to describe and define soft skills is imperative for closing the gap. We cannot achieve success if we do not have a clear understanding of what we are trying to build.
JAKAPA = Evidence Based Approach to Soft Skills
JAKAPA partnered with the BESSI Research Group from the University of Illinois. They have been studying soft skills and their impact and identified 32 skills common to many of the frameworks used to describe career readiness, 21st century skills, social and emotional skills and essential skills. Their research uncovered key findings about how soft skills impact our success.
Self-management skills, which include skills such as goal regulation, organization and time, task and detail management predict course grades and academic engagement. They also predict conscientiousness, which predicts the number of years of education adults will complete.
Social Engagement Skills
Social engagement skills, which include a number of communication skills, predict enterprising occupational interests, peer acceptance, friendship quality, exercise, and life satisfaction.
Emotional Resilience Skills
Emotional resilience skills, which include stress and impulse regulation, anger management, confidence regulation, independence, adaptability, and optimism predict 21% of realistic interests, 18% of peer acceptance and a full 30% of our overall life satisfaction.
Innovation skills, which include creativity, abstract thinking, cultural competence, information processing and self-reflection skills predict 25% of investigative interests and 63% of artistic interests and are more important than ever as we automate more and more jobs.
Cooperation skills, which include perspective-taking, social warmth, teamwork, trust and ethical capacity, predict 21% of social interests and 34% of friendship quality are impacted by our cooperation skills.
Soft Skills = Future Success
Schools need to develop a strategy to teach and assess these critical skills if we are to prepare students for their futures. JAKAPA has the solution. We measure, train and track these skills. By engaging with JAKAPA 10-15 minutes daily, students will build these critical skills and succeed in school, work and life. Contact JAKAPA today for a demo to learn more about how you can improve student engagement, increase graduation rates, decrease discipline and truly prepare your students for their futures.