In the midst of the seemingly never-ending debate as to whether or not traditional higher education institutions can help graduates find meaningful employment, four overarching technology-based pathways and tools seem to be doing an excellent job of trying to end the heated argument.

“The historic disconnect between higher education and the needs of the labor market is a data problem,” writes Ryan Craig for TechCrunch. “In the past, data translating the discrete skills or competencies that employers need was not easily available or meaningful to faculty who create courses, or the students who take them.

According to Craig, the revitalization of higher education as a critical stepping stone into a meaningful career will come not in the transformation of teaching and learning via technological support, but instead a “new digital language that connects higher education and the labor market and, in doing so, exerts profound changes on both.”

Based on recent internet- and technology-based pathways and tools implemented by forward-thinking colleges and universities that have documented notable gains in post-graduation employment, eCampus News has crafted a curated list on the four technology-based supports bridging higher ed and the workforce:

college credentialing

1. Credentialing

Listed by the above-mentioned TechCrunch article as the predominant way technology is revolutionizing higher education, competency-based education (CBE) is becoming a go-to for career-minded students thanks to badging, ePortfolios, and employer-curated credential-to-career pipelines—pathways that many traditional institutions are migrating toward, allowing for the collection of competency data. On the employer side, TechCrunch notes that Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS) are providing a clear path for employers to interact with this new data.  ATS are “incorporating analytics and will soon begin gathering new competency data as inputs for assembling candidate pools for human hiring managers to evaluate,” writes Craig. “As such, ATS is transitioning from a backwater of HR technology to Application Information Systems that will radically reduce the preponderance of false positives and false negatives in candidate pools, thereby significantly reducing bad hires that cost employers about $15,000 each, on average.”

Read more about credentialing:

(Next page: Tech to workforce bridges #2-4)


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