Graduates wish they studied business

New survey suggests students would reconsider courses if starting again

A survey has revealed that businesses are not alone in bemoaning a skills gap in the UK. Graduates entering the workforce also consider themselves under-prepared and would choose a business-based course or professional qualification if they were to start their degree again.

The Graduates in the Workplace survey found that a third of those who graduated in 2005 feel they did the wrong course and are now struggling to pay debts or get on the property ladder.

The findings show that with reflection, many graduates would study a subject that relates directly to business or that better equips them with workplace skills, according to the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD), which conducted the study.

“A combination of fierce competition for graduate jobs and graduates taking longer to find work appears to be having an impact on their views about their choice of degree,” said Victoria Winkler, CIPD learning, training and development advisor.

Winkler said that the government needed to work alongside employers to find out what skills are needed in the workplace, and this information should then be fed into schools and colleges.

However, the survey also suggested that despite wishing they had picked a more business-orientated course, 75% of graduates believed university had helped in terms of communication and presentation skills, team-work and confidence.

© Crimson Business Ltd. 2006

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