Colleges should take new approaches to adult education in order to ensure that workers’ skills can keep pace with employers’ needs in a changing economy, according to a report released on Wednesday by the American Council on Education.
The report examines the findings of a study, released last fall, that found American adults were lagging behind many of their global peers in areas such as reading, mathematics, and problem-solving skills. That study, known as the Survey of Adult Skills, was led by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development.
ACE’s report makes several recommendations for how colleges and others can promote skills and increase the attainment of a postsecondary education. They include aligning academic content with occupational goals, offering “stackable” credentials that allow students to show what they have learned, and embracing flexible schedules for teaching and learning.