Employability Skills Framework

How was the Framework Developed?

The Employability Skills Framework was developed as part of the Support for States Employability Standards in CTE and Adult Education project, an initiative of the Office of Vocational and Adult Education, U.S. Department of Education. The first step in the framework development was to inventory existing national, state, and local employability standards and assessments to identify the types of competencies that were deemed important. The inventory highlighted many commonalities across the various skill sets and led to the recognition of nine universal skill areas within which all individual skills could be categorized. These nine skill areas, in turn, were clustered into three overarching categories: applied knowledge, workplace skills, and effective relationships. These categories form the foundation of the framework. Users may access the framework to learn more about specific skill areas and individual competencies, as well as to assess relationships among the various sets of skills included in the inventory.

Framework development was guided by a technical work group (TWG) composed of representatives from career and technical education (CTE), adult education, workforce development, and business. The TWG reviewed the initial inventory, convened to discuss the framework, and provided feedback on successive drafts. Finally, the framework was reviewed by groups of stakeholders, including employers, professional associations, and federal agencies. Stakeholder discussions focused on opportunities for cross-agency collaboration and the framework's relevance to a broad range of potential users in CTE and adult education, as well as throughout the education and workforce systems.

Technical Work Group (TWG) Participants
Janet Bray
Association for Career and Technical Education
Paul Jurmo
Anthony Carnevale
Georgetown University Center
on Education and the Workforce
Judith Koenig
Board on Testing and Assessment,
National Research Council
Aarti Dhupelia
Chicago Public Schools
Timothy Magner
Partnership for 21st Century Skills
Karen Elzey
Skills for America's Future,
The Aspen Institute
Reecie Stagnolia
Kentucky Adult Education
Jamie Fall
Human Resource Policy Association
Richard Stephens
The Boeing Company
Maria Flynn
Jobs for the Future
Grace Suh
IBM Corporation
Kim Green
National Association of State Directors of
Career and Technical Education Consortium
Mary Wright
The Conference Board