Periodically a debate emerges in social media about whether young people should be forced to present in front of the class.
The Atlantic reported one such debate in September 2018. The story was about a tweet posted by a 15-year old high-school student:
“Stop forcing students to present in front of the class and give them a choice not too.”
This tweet had gone viral, as had a similar tweet posted earlier that year.
Some students were concerned that forcing them to present in front of their peers, could fuel their anxiety and have long-term harmful effects. Some of the tweets suggested it was a mental health issue, and that people suffering from anxiety should be given alternatives.
In 2015, Victoria University of Wellington did an Employability Skills survey to find out what employers are looking for in their graduates, apart from a degree of course! The survey found that the number one attribute (also known as ‘soft skill’) that employers want from graduates is work ethic while verbal communication skills are number two. They rank ahead of analytical and critical thinking (number four) and well ahead of written communication skills (number eight).
Other surveys and experts in New Zealand and overseas have found similar results.
Absolute IT, a New Zealand IT recruitment agency quotes an Absolute IT Job Seeker Insight report which found that tech professionals rate communication skills as the most important skill to get ahead in the workplace.
I get huge satisfaction from seeing the relief, pride, and even joy that people experience when they complete a course and reflect on the progress they have made. See what others say for some inspiring stories.