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Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

Date of Award

Spring 2015

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department

Department of Graduate Psychology

Advisor(s)

Michael Stoloff

Abstract

The skills psychology students possess that employers look for in job applicants include: reliability, integrity, work ethic, communication, technology, critical thinking, teamwork, and professionalism (Rodgers, 2012). I conducted a study to determine whether participating in a brief classroom activity would improve students’ ability to effectively describe their skills. Students were asked to write a cover letter before and after the activity. The activity included a discussion of four skills and student reflection on their experiences that demonstrated these skills. I hypothesized that overall letter-writing would improve, that students’ self-reported levels of preparedness to find a job would improve, that students with previous experience of applying for a job and writing cover letters would perform better on the pre-test compared to students with no such experience, and that ratings for skills each group discussed during the activity would improve more than skills that were not discussed. The final sample size included 30 students. Multivariate ANOVAs and dependent-samples t-tests were used to determine if the activity systematically impacted student performance.

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