The following post contains contributions from Microsoft Colleges and Schools Business Manager Anthony Nneke, who hosted the webinar session below.
While students cover a broad range of subjects throughout their education in order to build their knowledge and understanding, a lot of the areas explored are vehicles for the development of skills. Is it of any tangible use in the year 2016 for someone to know that the Battle of Hastings took place in 1066? Or will understanding some of the hidden meanings within the works of Shakespeare help someone to become a better accountant or doctor for example? Highly unlikely, but it's the practice of learning self-discipline and developing further skills applicable in the 21st century jobs market, as well as covering the core academic subjects that all dovetail together to propel today's young learners into tomorrow's workforce.
As well as developing skills through the core of the curriculum, we're constantly hearing stories from teachers looking to further enhance their students' employability prospects with additional business skills based around 21st Century Learning.
Webinar - understanding the value of Microsoft Certifications - 30th April 2015:
A recent report from the IDC highlighting the fundamental attributes that employers are looking for in new hires, found that Microsoft Office ranks as the 3rd most required skill of the 20 most needed future job skills.
Given that Office 365 is available to students at no cost from their school or university, they should already by familiar with many of its functions and be able to transfer those skills directly into the world of employment. However, in order to get an edge on the competition when applying for jobs, it can be helpful to have a recognised qualification or certification that shows their proficiency can extend beyond basic word processing and creating a simple spreadsheet or presentation.
Microsoft offers a range of certifications, including Microsoft Office Specialist, that can not only enhance a student's job prospects, but also improve their continual use of technology, making them more effective learners.
Last year we hosted a webinar in conjunction with our partner Risual, exploring the value of certifications from the perspective of an employers, and also looking at West Hertfordshire College as an example of the benefits evident within education when students support their education with qualifications.
You can listen to the webinar and view the slides in the video above, or find more on our SlideShare channel.