An Evidence-Based Approach to Employability Curricula and Transferable Skill Development: A Mixed Methods Study


  • Amany Gouda-Vossos Monash University, Australia
  • Mahbub Sarkar Monash University, Australia
  • Christopher Thompson Monash University, Australia
  • Tina Overton Monash University, Australia
  • Angela Ziebell Deakin University, Australia


Self Perceived Employability, Career Development Curriculum, STEM Employability, Graduate Outcome


Within Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), there is cross cultural evidence of gaps in transferrable skills between new graduates’ capabilities and employers’ expectations. These gaps hinder graduates’ ability to obtain employment. Herein we report the impact of an evidence-based approach to closing skills gaps in senior STEM students based on their self-perceived employability. A capstone-style, for-credit elective module was developed for STEM students based on the skills gaps found in prior research. The impact of this intervention was measured utilising a mixed-method design. Students’ self-perceived employability pre- and post- module completion were measured, along with post-module reflections collected via a series of open-ended questions. Overall, the module had a positive impact on student self-perceived employability, with the greatest impact in the areas of ‘awareness of opportunity’, ‘perceptions of future success’, and ‘confidence in skills’. A post hoc analysis indicated significant increases in post-module completion ‘confidence in skills’ for women, an important insight given the gender-based issues in career progress and retention in STEM. The qualitative analysis suggested that students highly valued the opportunity to develop job application and transferable skills. The results are discussed in the light of the importance of evidence-based, curriculum-embedded interventions in guiding students to employment.


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How to Cite

An Evidence-Based Approach to Employability Curricula and Transferable Skill Development: A Mixed Methods Study. (2023). Journal of University Teaching and Learning Practice, 20(5).