Skills vs. Education

Great piece from Michael Schrage at the Harvard Business Review blog: Higher Education is Overrated. Skills Aren’t. I’m no basher of formal credentials: i’ve even got a couple myself. But i too have been frustrated (multiple times) by computer science majors who aren’t effective programmers, to take one example.

His bottom line is that skills and accomplishment are really the coinage of business, and there’s no guarantee they follow directly from ¬†formal education (valuable though it might be).

Some other quotable quotes:

  • “Knowledge may be power, but “knowledge from college” is neither predictor nor guarantor of success. “
  • “Treating education as the best proxy for human capital is like using patents as your proxy for measuring innovation”
  • “Academic and classroom markets are profoundly different than business and workplace markets. Why should anyone be surprised that serious knowledge/skill gaps dominate those differences?”