Essential Skills for Learning and Working: Perspectives From Education and Employment Leaders Across Canada

The Conference Board of Canada, March 10, 2022
Impact Paper by ,
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The changing world of work-including rapid changes introduced by the pandemic- is demanding changes in employees’ skill sets. The Regional Sounding Tours looked at what leaders in education, skill development, and employment consider to be essential skills in the world today.

Document Highlights

  • In our Regional and Virtual Sounding Tours (RST, VRST), leaders in education, skills, and employment from across Canada shared their perspectives on the essential skills required for educational and labour market success. These skills included the following:
    • foundational skills, including digital literacy
    • social and emotional skills (SES)
    • employment readiness, including career guidance
  • VRST participants indicated that these essential skills play an important role in navigating educational and career transitions and that certain aspects of these skills increased in importance during the COVID-19 pandemic. Digital literacy as well as SES such as resiliency, self-management, and communication were noted as important skills during the economic uncertainty and virtual work triggered by the pandemic.
  • Development of these essential skills takes time and should be embedded in lifelong learning initiatives.

Table of Contents

Key Findings
Background
Social and Emotional Skills More in Demand Than Ever
Basic Literacies Are Foundational
Employers Seeking Work-Ready Individuals
Working for Work Skills
What's Next

Appendix A: Methodology
Appendix B: Bibliography

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