College students should be taught interview techniques to bridge a "major gap" between academic qualifications and their ability to get a job. The recommendations were made by Graduate Careers Ireland, which represents careers officers in third-level inst

It warns of a "critical knowledge and skill deficit" and points out that many employers do not consider academic achievement the main criteria for giving someone a job. But some colleges query whether employability, career development learning and entrepreneurship should even be part of their mission.

The submission calls for a National Employability Strategy, in line with EU policy, which would outline objectives for the higher education sector.


It argues that students should have an in-depth knowledge of employability skills as well as their subject when they finish their course. "Graduate Careers Ireland sees this as a critical knowledge and skill deficit for many students which potentially hinders and impedes their future development," it said.

And with graduate unemployment soaring to 10pc, Graduate Careers Ireland said that entrepreneurship and employability skills should be embedded into the curriculum.

This would support rather than threaten traditional academic values, it said in its submission.

The submission said that graduates should be able to understand recruitment methods, identify vacancies, identify challenges to obtaining suitable opportunities and devise strategies for addressing them and present themselves effectively at interviews.

Graduates can miss opportunities, misunderstand situations, follow a career path not suited to them, or simply fail to fulfil their potential it said.