'Graduate Attributes in Higher Education' - new book

In the wake of the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF) results, a new book highlighting a range of graduate attributes which provide added value to a degree in today’s competitive job market has been launched by academics at the University of Dundee.

Graduate Attributes in Higher Education, written and edited by specialists across a range of disciplines from the University and colleagues at the University of Highlands and Islands, is a timely reminder of how studying at higher education level provides more than core subject knowledge.  

The book draws attention to the fact that in an increasingly competitive job market, knowledge and discipline-specific skills do not enhance employability unless accompanied with a range of interpersonal skills and abilities such as confidence, self-awareness, resilience, adaptability, empathy, creativity and professionalism.

Co-editor Dr Carey Normand said, “Living in a conceptual age, there is a need to no longer focus solely on knowledge – what a person knows - and skills – what a person can do, but also on a more holistic approach which looks at ways of being or the attributes a person has.  The book discusses how educators and supporters of learning in Higher Education can foster these attributes within the curricula.”

Using an interdisciplinary approach, the book pulls together graduate attributes from the perspective of academics in subjects as diverse as Business, Nursing, Design, Engineering and Education.

Dr Lorraine Anderson, Head of the Centre for enhancement of Academic Skills, Teaching, Learning and Employability (CASTLE) at the University of Dundee, who co-edited the book with Carey, said, “This is a book for educators by educators that aims to bridge the gap between universities and employers. It is also a practical guide to how these discreet yet interlinked qualities can be embedded into education to allow students to develop their own set of valuable attributes.”

Educators from other institutions may well take note: the University of Dundee was given a Gold award – the highest possible rating – in the 2017 Teaching Excellence Framework (TEF).  The TEF panel said their awarding of Gold to Dundee reflected its comprehensive range of opportunities for students to develop knowledge, skills and understanding which are most highly valued by employers, exactly what this new book advocates.

Senior Careers Advisor at the University, Ruth O’ Riordan, said, “By emphasising the importance and practice of allowing a student to expand and develop their key strengths throughout their university life and beyond, we expect this text to be invaluable to educators across the Higher Education sector.”


Notes: Graduate Attributes in Higher Education: Attitudes on Attributes from across the Disciplines, edited by Carey Normand and Lorraine Anderson, is published by Routledge.  

For media enquiries contact:
Roddy Isles
Head of Corporate Communications
University of Dundee
Nethergate, Dundee, DD1 4HN
Tel: +44 (0)1382 384910
Mobile: 07800 581902
Email: r.isles@dundee.ac.uk