Developing key skills for a lifetime of opportunity
A Department for Education and Employment case study

Page 1: Introduction

Choosing a career pathway is one of the most important decisions you will ever have to make. It is not just about applying for a job at a point in time and then undertaking a job role. A career is a lifelong process that involves managing your own personal and professional development throughout your working life. This case study examines how it is necessary for you to look into the future, both...
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Page 2: The changing economy

The economy consists of many different sectors including the secondary sector which is concerned with manufacturing and construction and the tertiary sector which is comprised of commercial services concerned with trading activity and direct services such as teaching and medicine. Since the 1960s, employment in manufacturing has fallen from one in three of the workforce, to under one in five. This...
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Page 3: The need for Key Skills

In the past when we thought about skills, we thought about those that were specific to particular occupations. Skills were defined by job titles such as ‘joiner’ or ‘toolmaker’. Though many of these skills still exist, there are a number of skills required for any job whatever it may entail. These are known as Key Skills. Key Skills are general skills related to almost...
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Page 4: Key Skills in context

Imagine that you have been asked to join a group of young people to undertake any of the following activities: The running and management of a newly formed sports team which has just joined a league The organisation of a day conference for business studies students at your school or college, which involves inviting six people from the world of business to come and make some...
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Page 5: The needs of employers

Employers require people who will be able to apply their knowledge and skills and transfer them across occupations. Recently, it has been employers who have requested the development of Key Skills. They feel that formal education should be helping young people to ready themselves for the workplace in a way that builds upon their knowledge and experience. Although qualifications are accepted as a...
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Page 6: Conclusion

The needs of employers are constantly developing and you are likely to work for a number of different employers in different roles during your working life. Never before has the responsibility of retaining and developing your own employability as part of your own personal development been so firmly placed on your shoulders.The challenge you face during this time is to equip yourself with a new and...
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