Career & Internship Services

Career Handbook

Transferable Skills

As you begin your job or internship search, it is important to know your own qualifications. Over the years you have developed and improved many skills through coursework, extracurricular activities and life experiences. Some of these skills are called "transferable" skills because you use them in many occupations, regardless of the type of work and can "transfer" them from one type of work to another. Employers expect you to identify and demonstrate all the skills you learned in college and equate them to the work environment.

Below is a list of five broad skill areas which are divided into more specific skills.

  • Review the list and identify the skills you possess. You may even rate the skills indicating your ability in each area. Suggested rating scale:
  • 1 = strong ability 2 = some ability 3 = enough ability to get by with help from others

  • Describe specific examples of situations and results when you used each skill.


the skillful expression, transmission and interpretation of knowledge and ideas.

  • Speaking effectively
  • Writing concisely
  • Listening attentively
  • Expressing ideas
  • Facilitating group discussion
  • Providing appropriate feedback
  • Negotiating
  • Perceiving nonverbal messages
  • Persuading
  • Reporting information
  • Describing feelings
  • Interviewing
  • Editing

Research & Planning

the search for specific knowledge and the ability to conceptualize future needs and solutions for meeting those needs.

  • Forecasting, predicting
  • Creating ideas
  • Identifying problems
  • Imagining alternatives
  • Identifying resources
  • Gathering information
  • Solving problems
  • Setting goals
  • Extracting information
  • Defining needs
  • Analyzing
  • Developing evaluation strategies

Human Relations

the use of interpersonal skills for resolving conflict, relating to and helping people.

  • Developing rapport
  • Being sensitive
  • Listening
  • Conveying feelings
  • Providing support for others
  • Motivating
  • Sharing credit
  • Counseling
  • Cooperating
  • Delegating with respect
  • Representing others
  • Perceiving feelings, situations
  • Asserting

Organization, Management & Leadership

the ability to supervise, direct and guide individuals and groups in the completion of tasks and fulfillment of goals.

  • Initiating new ideas
  • Handling details
  • Coordinating tasks
  • Managing groups
  • Delegating responsibility
  • Teaching
  • Coaching
  • Counseling
  • Promoting change
  • Selling ideas or products
  • Making decisions with others
  • Managing conflict

Work Survival

the day-to-day skills which assist in promoting effective production and work satisfaction.

  • Implementing decisions
  • Cooperating
  • Enforcing policies
  • Being punctual
  • Managing time
  • Attending to detail
  • Meeting goals
  • Enlisting help
  • Accepting responsibility
  • Setting and meeting deadlines
  • Organizing
  • Making decisions