Assessing Educational Outcomes in the 21st Century in Uganda: A Focus on Soft Skills

TitleAssessing Educational Outcomes in the 21st Century in Uganda: A Focus on Soft Skills
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2019
AuthorsMitana, JMary Viann, Mugagga, AM, Giacomazzi, M, Kizito, OSaint, Ariapa, M
JournalJournal of Emerging Trends in Educational Research and Policy Studies (JETERAPS)
Keywordseducational assessment, educational outcomes, secondary school, softskills, Uganda

Human experience and empirical evidence suggest that assessing educational outcomes cannot be limited to testing or examining learners in the traditional subjects or hard skills alone as school graduates are often faced with life situations and employment challenges that require competences beyond hard skills. Assessing soft skills, or known as transferable skills or generic skills is increasingly recognised as critical for ensuring a holistic view of educational outcomes. This paper explores the kinds of educational outcomes required by employers on the labour market in Uganda, and how these educational outcomes can be measured and assessed.It is a description of part of educational interventions of Luigi Giussani Institute of Higher Education in Uganda (LGIHE). The first part of this paper draws on documentary and empirical evidence from key employers, supervisors and business owners to validateassertions from the available literature whereas there is increasing demand for soft skills from the employment sector, little effort has been invested in nurturingand assessing learners‟ soft skills.The second part draws from literature and empirical step by step procedure in designing Soft Skills Assessment Tools (SSATs).The paper reveals that education outcomes required of potential employees are wider in scope than traditionalexamination grades,academic qualifications or hard skills. This paper outlines the key soft skills demanded by the labour market and the suggested steps taken in designing SSATs. Hence, the paper recommends deliberate steps to be taken by schools in nurturing and assessing soft skills.