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A Multi-Pronged Approach to Assessing Technical and Non-Technical Workforce Skills in a Two Year College

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2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


Atlanta, Georgia

Publication Date

June 23, 2013

Start Date

June 23, 2013

End Date

June 26, 2013



Conference Session

Information Literacy, Computer Efficacy and Readiness

Tagged Division

Two Year College Division

Page Count


Page Numbers

23.70.1 - 23.70.10



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Paper Authors


Bill D. Bailey Southern Polytechnic State University

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Bill Bailey is currently an assistant professor of industrial engineering technology and quality assurance at Southern Polytechnic State University. He holds a PhD in Technology Management (Quality Systems Specialization) from Indiana State University. He also holds a Master of Science in Industrial Technology degree from North Carolina A&T State University, and a Baccalaureate degree in Psychology and English.
Dr. Bailey has extensive manufacturing experience, including lean implementation and training and development. He has developed programs and taught in a community college for several years. He has served as an examiner for several Baldrige based quality award processes, including The Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, and state awards in North Carolina and Georgia. His research and consulting interests include the improvement of organizational performance through quality initiatives such as the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award Process, Six Sigma, Lean, etc., and the application of these initiatives to education, manufacturing, services and healthcare.

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A Multi-Pronged Approach to Assessing Technical and Non-Technical Workforce Skills in a Two year CollegeThis case study will detail the use of rubrics and other assessment tools in a two year Tool, Dieand Mold Making program. As a result of industry feedback, a community college adopted fourworkforce skills to be integrated into all curricula, college wide. Multiple methods ofmeasurement were identified for each workforce skill. The workforce skills identified were: • Communication - Communicate effectively through speaking, listening, and writing. • Critical Thinking - Use critical thinking to analyze and solve problems. • Technical Skills - Demonstrate knowledge and competence in academic and technical fields of study. • Teamwork - Demonstrate positive, effective, and appropriate interpersonal skills.The integration of these workforce skills also resulted in a more comprehensive approach toassessment. This program requires multiple individual and team projects in the laboratoryportion, and design projects for the classroom portion of core courses. Rubrics were developedfor all individual and group projects. As part of the effort to integrate workforce skills, writtenplans, post-project analysis, and presentations were also required. The resulting plans, rubrics,and analysis may be used by students to construct a portfolio over their course of study, whichdemonstrates all of the workforce skills. Student work was evaluated through self-assessment,peer assessment and instructor assessment.For example: A skill list and corresponding scoring rubric was developed for each lab project.Using these tools, students would assess their own success on a project. The instructor wouldthen perform an assessment. They would discuss the assessments, reach consensus, and agree ona plan moving forward. This approach provides the student with clear expectations, and realtime feedback. It also serves to create a culture of continuous improvement. The resultingassessment information can be applied at many levels for continuous improvement. The studentcan demonstrate skill progression through the portfolio. This information can be aggregated foranalysis and improvement at the course and program level. The result is a multi-level model forassessment and improvement.

Bailey, B. D. (2013, June), A Multi-Pronged Approach to Assessing Technical and Non-Technical Workforce Skills in a Two Year College Paper presented at 2013 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, Atlanta, Georgia. 10.18260/1-2--19084

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