The Role of Creative Coursework in Skill Development for University Seniors
Previous research suggests that creativity training can be effective in academic settings and that teachers in particular can have an impact on creativity. Furthermore, creativity is one of many transferable skills in higher education that will benefit students when they enter the workforce. This study extends research on creativity training and transferable skills in higher education, using data from the Senior Transitions topical module of the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE). Responses from over 48,000 seniors at 227 different U.S colleges and universities were used to explore curricular differences across disciplinary fields as well as how exposure to creative coursework can predict confidence in numerous skills and abilities. Exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis provided support for a measure of exposure to creative coursework, and an ANOVA suggested significant differences by major fields, with arts majors showing a distinct advantage. Results from ordinary least squares regression models found that even after controlling for several demographic and institutional characteristics, creative coursework is a significant positive predictor of confidence in several different skills and abilities that are important for adapting to traditional and non-traditional work settings, including creative thinking, critical thinking, entrepreneurial skills, and networking abilities. Potential reasons for these patterns of results are discussed. These findings can help to inform curricular and programming enhancements for college students across all major fields, helping to better prepare them for their futures in various workplace settings.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).