University degree no longer sufficient to enter the labor market, say specialists

graduate university students
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AMMAN — Economic fluctuations and qualitative leaps in the world of technology have proved that a higher education degree is no longer the only criterion for assessing an individual's intelligence and ability to succeed in the labor market, specialists say.اضافة اعلان

With that being the case, universities need to seek to develop their programs to provide students with the skills they need to enter the labor market, most agree.

... The “curricula must be consistent with the requirements of the labor market,” especially since there is “failure to implement policies on the ground.”

Ahmad Awad, founder and director of the Phenix Center for Economics and Informatics Studies, told Jordan News that a factor that could be decisive in being accepted in the labor market is skill, and therefore, equipping students with skills should be given more attention than teaching them theoretical subjects because the focus is on basic skills for filling a job and not on theoretical knowledge such as programming, management, and accounting.

He added that the private sector has the responsibility to provide training for students, and “young people should make an effort to develop and educate themselves.”

According to Awad, the Jordanian “education system has many weaknesses and gaps”, and the “curricula must be consistent with the requirements of the labor market”, especially since there is “failure to implement policies on the ground”.

Dean of Scientific Research and Graduate Studies at Isra University Aysh Alhroob told Jordan News that the labor market today has become selective in choosing specializations, and that if “in the past, we used to think that skill came after obtaining a certificate, today, educational materials and skills on the Internet are available and free, which makes it possible to have skills without a certificate”.

The German experience is a good example of this, he said, as it prepares students to engage in the labor market through training programs.

“We need a national program to train students, and there should be cooperation between universities and the labor market,” he said, adding that the “Jordanian National Qualifications Framework has taken a step toward that in order to link students with the labor market and build skills”.

Alhroob said that “skills come through training in a real work environment”, stressing, however, that a “certificate constitutes a huge knowledge base for students”.

The head of the Workers’ House, Hamada Abu Nijmeh, told Jordan News that economic changes and technological advances make it incumbent on students to make an “effort to obtain the necessary skills such as thinking, analysis, and communication”.

Abu Nijmeh said that “employers are focusing on skills such as creativity, emotional intelligence, analytical thinking, active learning, decision making, communication with others, leadership, and acceptance of change” and stressed the need for students to choose specializations wisely, to match the requirements of the labor market, and for universities to pay attention to scientific research and strive to develop the students’ competencies.

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