International Education Journal

Articles from the Educational Research Conference 2001


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Student perceptions of the importance and value of a Graduate Quality framework in a tertiary environment

Vicki Feast
University of South Australia



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The importance and significance of the attainment of graduate or generic skills by tertiary students is increasingly being recognised by tertiary institutions, employers, students and governments both nationally and internationally. This study examines the importance and value that students place on a Graduate Quality framework developed at the University of South Australia. The study involved administering a questionnaire to a group of 161 tertiary business students. Analysis of the questionnaire established a number of quantitative findings. Subsequently six students were interviewed in order to follow up the quantitative findings and to further investigate and establish reasons for these findings.

This research found that students place a good deal of importance on having a Graduate Quality approach to tertiary education and that students tended to undervalue their own achievement of Graduate Qualities but valued help from their courses in developing these Qualities. Some gender, age and career differences were found.

Graduate Qualities, Generic abilities, Tertiary education, Skills, Competencies



Feast, V. (2001)  Student perceptions of the importance and value of a Graduate Quality framework in a tertiary environment. International Education Journal, 2 (4), 144-158.

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