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Skills and knowledge needs among recent Bioscience graduates — how do our courses measure up?
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Professor Jane Calvert
Brown C, Wiles C, Calvert JE
Bioscience Education Journal
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A telephone survey was conducted of 2002 or 2003 graduates (942 in total) from various bioscience degree programmes at 4 universities. A structured and scripted interview determined: title/class of degree; nature of current occupation (unemployed, further degree, job) and if regarded as ‘career related’ post or just ‘filling in’; if current occupation was related to degree; three areas of current occupation for which they had been poorly prepared or well prepared by their course. Of the 457 successful contacts, 66 were not currently in any occupation and 121 were taking a further degree (PhD 39, MSc 31, PGCE 20, Medicine 19, others 12). Of the remainder, 144 regarded themselves as in ‘career’ posts while 123 were ‘filling in’. Areas of their current occupation for which their degree course had not prepared them adequately included: practical work (90); careers guidance (42); specialist knowledge (24) and advanced IT applications (21). Areas of their occupation for which they felt they had been well prepared by their course included: the required knowledge base (121); communication skills especially presentations (83); basic IT needs (54); confidence and time- /self- management (43) and relating to people (41). These data are discussed in relationship to recent and current trends in course provision within Higher Education (HE).
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