EDU News Curated by Kiosk: Soft Skills in AI and Other Higher Ed News

The Critical Role of Soft Skills in an AI-Dominated Job Market

From Kiosk: Artificial intelligence (AI) is already transforming workplaces and classrooms across the globe. The capability of AI-powered tools to assist with technical challenges has employers, educators, learners and talent seeing a shift of emphasis from purely technical skills alone. The value of “soft” skills is gaining awareness across the talent pipeline. High-performing teams require the capacity to communicate, to think critically and to solve problems together with each other and with technology.
View the full article from Kiosk.


How should today’s students prepare to enter a workforce transformed by artificial intelligence?

From North Eastern: “Suresh Muthuswami, chairman of North America for Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), made the case that in the future the most successful companies will employ workers versed both in the technology and its business applications. In addition to the imperative of lifelong learning, Muthuswami spoke about how the employee toolkit is rapidly changing. Employers are looking for talent versed in ‘soft skills’ as opposed to more specialized skills, with a growing premium placed on problem-solving skills, communication skills and computational thinking. Those tools are going to be more important, he contends, than, say, learning a specific programming language. ‘Understanding functional skills — human resources, finance, etc. — those skills are important,’ he said.”
View the full article from North Eastern.


Five Questions for Higher Ed to be Mindful of in 2024

From Evolllution: “As AI learns to automate many knowledge-worker tasks, it’s going to become increasingly important for individuals to develop enduring, uniquely human skills such as problem solving, dealing with ambiguity, critical thinking, and communication. After all, if AI is supposed to be a co-pilot, the pilot better be very good at being human, especially given AI, like any technology, will only reflect the morals of the user.”
View the full article from Evolllution.


Go head-to-head with ChatGPT to enhance your students’ personal learning

From Times Higher Education: “We developed the ChatGPT v Professor Competition to examine how G-AI could be adopted in education and improve students’ critical thinking and reasoning skills. The professor and ChatGPT took turns providing their responses to commonly asked questions on a subject, and students voted for the best ones. By comparing the human and the machine responses, students gained a deeper understanding of the chatbot’s capabilities and limitations, enhancing their critical thinking and reasoning skills, while also evaluating their own knowledge of the subject.”
View the full article from Times Higher Education.


Colleges are now closing at a pace of one a week. What happens to the students?

From The Hechinger Report: “Most students at colleges that close give up on their education altogether. Fewer than half transfer to other institutions, a SHEEO study found. Of those, fewer than half stay long enough to get degrees. Many lose credits when they move from one school to another and have to spend longer in college, often taking out more loans to pay for it. …  Colleges are almost certain to keep closing. As many as one in 10 four-year colleges and universities are in financial peril, the consulting firm EY Parthenon estimates.”
View the full article from The Hechinger Report.


Colleges ‘struggling on diversity’ before Supreme Court ruling

From Times Higher Education: “US colleges and universities were showing anemic growth in racial diversity even before the US Supreme Court ruling last year that rejected overt affirmative action strategies, meaning that the institutions need to look more at themselves for solutions than blame the judiciary, a Georgetown University research team has concluded. … The result, the Georgetown analysts said, points to the need for more emphasis by institutions in areas that include reducing their use of legacy-based preferences, actively recruiting minority and first-generation students, and restoring and refining their use of standardized admissions tests.”
View the full article from Times Higher Education.


Most Student Loan Borrowers Have Delayed Major Life Events

From Gallup: “71% of all currently enrolled college students or previously enrolled students who stopped out of their program before completing it say they have delayed at least one major life event because of their student loans. The most commonly delayed event is purchasing a home, named by 29% of borrowers, followed closely by buying a car (28%), moving out of their parents’ home (22%) and starting their own business (20%). Fifteen percent of these borrowers also report they have delayed having children because of their student loans, and 13% have delayed marriage. Among previously enrolled students, 35% say their student loans have kept them from re enrolling in a postsecondary program and finishing their degree”.
View the full article from Gallup.


Will Academic Freedom and Campus Free Speech Survive?

From Inside Higher Education: “President Biden’s education secretary has said “What’s happening on our campuses is abhorrent.” Now, some members of the president’s party have joined House Republicans in pushing the U.S. Education Department to broadly define antisemitism when investigating universities over such allegations. And House Republicans have summoned the leaders of three more universities to testify later this month. … Many faculty members have raised alarm over these events, saying they threaten two often overlapping concepts: academic freedom and free speech.”
View the full article from Inside Higher Education.


Can US universities ‘heal’ after campus clashes over Gaza

From Times Higher Education: “The perceived fairness of punishments handed to student protest leaders will be crucial for whether US universities can heal after police were invited to break up pro-Palestine sit-ins, according to a former college president. Many staff and students have condemned leaders’ decisions to invite officers on to campus, notably at Columbia University and the University of California, Los Angeles. In a Substack post, Columbia history professor Adam Tooze warned that many would ‘struggle to unsee and unfeel’ the ‘violence [that] came from the police side…at the invitation and request of the university administration’”.
View the full article from Times Higher Education.


Graduates remain confident about finding a job but express job security concerns

From Higher Ed Dive: “Although most college graduates feel confident about receiving a job offer soon after graduating, many also reported concerns about the competitive job market, the economy and career development opportunities, according to Monster’s 2024 State of the Graduate Report, which polled 1,000 new or upcoming college graduates. About 67% of graduates believe employers have more leverage to find the best candidates than job seekers have to find the best jobs, as compared to 56% who said the same in 2023. In addition, 77% said they’re concerned about job security during the job search process, and half said they assume they won’t be able to find a job at the company they prefer.”
View the full article from Higher Ed Dive.

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