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Clarification of competences: Formulating competences for job advertisements

Brief description

The students must consider all their competences in relation to the specific job advertisement. They must identify academic competences acquired during their studies and their experience of the relevance of their academic subject to the job market and see this in relation to their future job application effort.

Motivation for the exercise and required outcome

Including the job market perspective using specific job advertisements, either as a teaching activity or in students’ activities between sessions, will support the students’ ability to discover correlations between their academic training and a future work career. Moreover, the students may use the exercise as inspiration for an application for a future job.

Performing the exercise

  • As a teacher you must select three to five specific job advertisements in advance and distribute these to the students.
  • Your choice of job advertisements may possibly be based on the following:
    • A job advertisement reflecting the core competences of your students, which will enable them to focus directly on their academic skills.

    • A job advertisement reflecting peripheral competences in your students, which will enable them to focus more on their general skills.

  • The students read the job advertisements (five minutes).
  • Having read the job advertisements, the students form pairs and must now study the job advertisements more closely, focusing on identifying the key tasks in the job – what are the special qualifications requested? (ten minutes).
  • Then each student must specify the competences they possess in relation to the job advertisement. They may use the questions from handout 1 (Awaiting translation) as inspiration (20 minutes).

  • If there is enough time, the students may consider which tasks or requested qualifications in the job appeal to them in particular. This question may cause the students to consider which type of job they imagine for themselves.

  • Finally, the students move back in their original pairs and tell each other what they wrote down (ten minutes).


  • The exercise may be expanded by giving the students the task to find a job advertisement for a job they can imagine for themselves. The advertisements are shared with the class (possibly in Blackboard), providing all students with a small “inspiration catalogue” to start from.
  • The exercise may be combined with the tool for competence spotting. If there are many students with a professional Bachelor’s background in the academic subject, the tool may also be combined with the exercise Linking Bachelor’s and Master’s studies.


    Examples of practice

      Links and materials for this activity:

      You will need:

      • Download the attached handout here:

      Read more:

      • How does the exercise fit in with the course you are teaching?