Important Soft Skills for University Students

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FACULTY OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY & MULTIMEDIA COMMUNICATION

OUMH1103
LEARNING SKILLS FOR OPEN AND DISTANCE LEARNERS

IMPORTANT SOFT SKILLS FOR UNIVERSITY STUDENTS

Name: Md. Mahamudur Rahman

E-mail address: sohag@oum.edu.my

Table of Contents

Abstract 2
Introduction3
Discussions4
Conclusion 9
References 10

Abstract
“Soft skills” are the extra or additional intangible skills required by students beyond their academic skills which are generic in nature across the various domains of learning that encompasses character and teamwork. These are crucial to increase employability and also to compete successfully in this dynamic global environment. “Soft skills provide students with a strong conceptual and practical framework in building, developing and managing teams. It plays an important role in the overall personality development thereby enhance the student’s career prospects”. (Balaji & Somashekar, 2009) It ensures securing jobs after completing their study. Due to importance of soft skills, the Ministry of Higher Education (MoHE) has introduced “Malaysian Soft Skills Scale” named My3S, which can effectively be applied to students in institutions of higher learning to equip the students with, for getting a job and for further promotions and progress in the workplace. There are seven main elements introduced in “Malaysian Soft Skills Scale (My3S)” which are communication skills, critical thinking and problem solving skills, teamwork skills, learning and information management skills, entrepreneurial skills, moral and professional ethics and leadership skills. This report will discuss the importance of soft skills, taking into consideration of 7 core dimensions from previous mentioned elements of My3S, which play a vital role in the overall personality development of the university students. This paper will conclude suggesting for future graduates, government bodies and educational institutions to ensure that university students are equipped with the soft skills which are necessary for their current education & future career development.

Introduction
Goethe said “Every individual is a marvel of unknown and unrealized possibility” (Sahni, 2011). Malaysian State Labour Department deputy director August Buma said potential employers demanded soft skills like communication and work competency besides being knowledgeable. “Youths nowadays often think that they can easily secure a job because they are considered ‘professionals’ after completing their tertiary education. But the working world has changed in the past decade and demands more skills and competency. So, having knowledge without soft skills is an obstacle for fresh graduates in job hunting,” (Chan, 2011) Soft skills for students especially have become indispensable in this highly competitive global technological era. Students with a generous measure of soft skills will be able to manage well in this competitive world. These skills provide students with a strong conceptual and practical knowledge in building, developing and managing teams. This can transform them to self-confident individuals, capable of managing diverse situations in organizations & even for their personal life. As the educational trends and courses undergo dramatic changes, there are a multitude of opportunities and career options which are available to students today. But with the increasing options, there has been an equal rise in competition for jobs, and getting a good job is now becoming more and more difficult. With so many job applicants, it is only befitting that a person who has an extra edge over his rivals gets the job. Thus, besides the qualifications that we gain through colleges and universities or the so-called hard skills, there are other skills which are necessary to succeed at the workplace. This extra edge is what is now known as the soft skills or the...
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