Academic journal article Indian Journal of Positive Psychology

Effectiveness of Life Skills Training among University Students

Academic journal article Indian Journal of Positive Psychology

Effectiveness of Life Skills Training among University Students

Article excerpt

In today's context; employers, universities and professional bodies agree that we need to develop professionals who are highly skilled and ready to face the challenges of increased competition. More than ever we need professionals who are responsive to economic, social, cultural, technical and environmental change and can work flexibly and intelligently across business contexts (Prof. Sinha, Need to Focus on Developing Employability Skills in our Engineering Graduates).

According to the survey, carried out by a number of agencies, more than 70 percent of our engineering graduates are not employable. Dr Kalam has rightly said that India does not have problem of unemployment but unemployibility. The graduates lack other skills beside the academic or technical skills. Life skills are the positive behaviour and refer to self discovering skills, social skills and cognitive skills. The life Skills Education framework provides the praxis for addressing the core concerns as well as aspirations of the adolescents and the youth of today's India. Life skills Education is an emerging area of scientific study. In a general way life skill means a mix of knowledge, behaviour, attitudes and values and designates the possession of some skills and know-how to do something, or reach an aim. Child and adolescent mental health (CAMH) can be defined as (WHO, 2005) the capacity to achieve and maintain optimal psychological functioning and well being. It is directly related to the level reached and competence achieved in psychological and social functioning. The first part of this definition views CAMH as a positive dimension seen as a resource that is essential to subjective well-being and to our ability to perceive, comprehend and interpret our surroundings, to adapt to them or change them if necessary and to communicate with each other and have successful social interactions. [Lehtinen et al., ( 2005)]. The strength of the positive behaviour depends upon the depth of the skills acquired by the individual. The OECD (Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development) has adopted a more generic definition of life skills in the context of the DeSeCo project (Rychaen and Salganik 2001 ). It defines life skills on three general criteria, namely that a) key competencies contribute to an overall successful life and a well-functioning society, b) they are instrumental to meeting important challenges in a wide spectrum of relevant contexts, and finally, c) they are relevant to all individuals. These key competencies are: a) functioning in socially heterogeneous groups, b) acting autonomously and c) using tools interactively. A competency is more than just knowledge and skills. It involves the ability to meet complex demands, by drawing on and mobilizing psychosocial resources (including skills and attitudes) in a particular context. For example, the ability to communicate effectively is a competency that may draw on an individual's knowledge of language, practical IT skills and attitudes towards those with whom he or she is communicating. Individuals need a wide range of competencies in order to face the complex challenges of today's world, but it would be of limited practical value to produce very long lists of everything that they may need to be able to do in various contexts at some point in their lives.

The research review indicates that linkages to education as concerns encompass the direct promotion of capabilities through skills-based teaching and learning. Professionals, in addition to being technically competent, require skills of collaboration, communication and the ability to work in teams. There is a reported competency gap between these skills required by employers and those developed by students during their undergraduate courses (Drucker, 1999).

The current study looks more specifically on how this notion of the Capability Approach is increasingly reflected in personality development in particular in the form of life skills education. …

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