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Dr Denise Jackson awarded Cameron Prize in Education

Friday, 11 May 2012

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Dr Denise Jackson, a lecturer in ECU’s Business Edge team, has been awarded the University of Western Australia 2011 Cameron Prize in Education.

The Cameron Prize in Education is an annual prize awarded by UWA’s Faculty of Education. The prize is presented to the student whose PhD thesis is determined the best piece of research by the Faculty of Education Research Committee.

Dr Jackson’s research was a response to the business industry’s demand for ‘job-ready’ graduates. Through an examination of industry literature, she identified a broad set of non-technical skills – also referred to as generic or employability skills – that employers require in graduates, and produced profiles of ‘preferred graduates’ based on a balance of these cognitive, interpersonal, and technical requirements.

She also examined graduate performance for a number of Australian employers, finding that many graduates were lacking the non-technical skills that would make them ‘job-ready’, and reinforcing the need for business schools to review their courses to include both technical and non-technical skills training.

The importance of ECU’s Business Edge program is highlighted by Dr Jackson’s research. The program is core to the Bachelor of Business course, and over four units seeks to develop a set of ten non-technical skills in students, including teamwork, leadership, self-management and critical thinking.

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