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Towards an integrated academic assessment: closing employers’ expectations?

Ngat-Chin Lim (Nottingham University Business School, The University of Nottingham Malaysia Campus, Semenyih, Malaysia)

Education + Training

ISSN: 0040-0912

Article publication date: 16 March 2015




The purpose of this paper is to showcase that the integration of academic assessment with workplace performance appraisal practices can help to address the gap between graduate employability skills and employers’ requirements. Employability refers to learning of transferable skills.


The integrated assessment criteria grid by which the quality of the assignments may be judged was developed and discussed with the students. Grades achieved by each assessment criterion are analysed and inferred as to whether students have learned the desired transferable skills.


Such integration strengthens the theoretical argument on the importance of formative assessment as a way to nurture students’ learning. The transferable skills that students appeared to have learnt include “use of relevant data, meticulous, attention to details, structure & systems thinking, critical thinking and writing skill”.

Research limitations/implications

Only one cohort of students is involved and their participation in the discussion is on a voluntary basis. The paper was not able to address students who did not appear to have learnt the transferable skills.

Practical implications

Employers are more cognisant of the quality of the management students graduating from this university. The learning of transferable skills reflects creativity development, and this contributes to the theory of knowledge which emphasises the importance of developing creativity through education.


This paper introduces a new form of formative assessment as a way to nurture students’ learning of transferable skills within a coursework assignment setting.



Lim, N.-C. (2015), "Towards an integrated academic assessment: closing employers’ expectations?", Education + Training, Vol. 57 No. 2, pp. 148-169.



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