The level and quality of education traditionally significantly affect the professional activities, career success and life of every person.
This kind of direct correlation between education and life perspectives of any person is the most obvious in the developed countries, characterized by the constantly strong demand for professionals, intellectuals and creative persons. In such countries the demand for the qualified labor is based on needs of the free market.
But the global trends in the sphere of education revealed that educational documents are now not a very significant indicator of highly educated persons. The real quality of knowledge is now much more important than existence of a university diploma.
The modern approach to introduction of innovations in the leading national educational systems, for example of the US and the UK, allows making the following conclusion: the future of higher education will obviously be based on high significance of the level of knowledge, exclusive skills and individual capabilities of the specialist. The source of these knowledge and skills will not matter too much in future. In the forthcoming years the system of university education is going to be seriously transformed. These transformations will inevitably eliminate the monopoly of traditional universities in the field of professional education.
Almost everywhere in the world when hiring a person the employer will obviously prefer the applicant with better education and profound professional skills. But how can we be sure that the applicant actually possesses these required qualities? A person may have a higher education diploma as the basis for the professional career, and this diploma is actually quite an important thing. But this document only makes the employer think that the applicant has the knowledge and skills of the corresponding level and quality. In many cases this belief is based on the authority of the educational institution, which issued the relevant document. And the authority of the specific university is based on international and national rankings of higher education institutions, which are usually formed on the basis of independent reviews of experts and employers, and also on analysis of achievements and career success of their graduates.
So, we can say that the practical aspects of application of knowledge by persons are the basis for rankings of the universities and for assessment of professional qualification of future employees.
In the modern economy and in the modern labor market such professional characteristics of individuals, which allow them successfully fulfill complex professional tasks, are the most significant characteristics demanded by the employers. This means that skills and knowledge are primary and the diploma is secondary. That is why the status of the university is a very important, but still the secondary criteria when analyzing knowledge and skills of a certain person. This is a very positive trend because this means that highly qualified graduates from the developing and poorly developed countries have a chance to find a decent job in the developed states (of course under certain conditions like the language proficiency, quality of knowledge, confirmation of the qualification etc.). In other case employers would only offer jobs to graduates from the top-ranked universities.
Traditionally employers prefer not just persons with higher education, but those who systematically expand and improve their knowledge and skills. Today knowledge becomes outdated very quickly. Successful corporations always prefer persons, who regularly develop their educational level and improve their qualification. This is the normal HR practice today. So, that’s why one of the basic instruments of the Bologna process is the principle of personal development called the Lifelong Learning.
One must understand the following facts about the authoritative and transparent further education programs, which include the certification of knowledge:
these programs expand the level and the quality of knowledge of their participants;
these programs are the period of higher education, because they can expand its volume in the ECTS credits (ECTS stands for the European Credit Transfer and Accumulation System);
for employers these programs are an indicator of the sense of purpose, diligence, creative potential and aspiration for self-development;
people who take part in these programs and systematically improve their knowledge, have competitive advantages over others in the labor market;
these programs assume international educational documents.
I must also admit that successful completion of authoritative foreign programs of further education actually promotes the legalization and recognition of any higher education diploma at the international level. These foreign programs, as the periods of international education, expand the basic diploma on higher education because they increase its volume and improve the quality of knowledge of a person. In addition many of these programs can help bring the educational documents to conformity with the international standards.
In the developed states the employers most often need not just specialists with the high level of knowledge, but even more the originality thinking workers, able to solve different complex tasks of professional activity creatively and purposefully. In order to objectively reveal the qualities of a creative, enterprising and independently thinking expert, a person should engage in scientific activities. In other words, such person should start the research in the field of his or her professional interests, but not in the status of the formal university scientist. Such person doesn’t even need to write a thesis; he or she can work as the free thinker and practitioner. At first this may seem a bit too much, but if a person possesses the basic inclinations to perform the analytical studies, this is not that difficult. But anyway it’s obvious that the high-quality scientific practice is not something for everyone literally.
It is very important that together with in-depth analysis of the analyzed issue and its grammatically correct statement on paper, the researcher must be capable of offering the original innovative methods of solving this specific issue. If a person is capable of managing this task, he or she only has to learn how to state the original ideas on paper in the understandable way, and then send them for publication in the field specific scientific editions as scientific papers.
If a professional has a bibliography of original publications in the scientific journals, his or her professionalism, high level of knowledge, original way of thinking, the sense of purpose and initiative will be obvious for everyone. Such person will be known and authoritative in the scientific and professional environment. In addition such person will have a personal scientometric ranking and of course significant advantages over others in the labor market.