Core Competencies


The six competencies (and their subsets) listed below describe the core skill sets a student should be able to demonstrate after completing the requirements for an associate degree at Ventura College. These core skill sets are embedded in our established pattern of general education courses, in our more advanced major-preparation courses, and in student service learning experiences we provide over the span of a student's enrollment at the college. In addition, assignments that lead to the acquisition of these core skill sets are embedded in the coursework required for vocational certificates.

Core Skill Sets

  1. Communication
    Students show that they can communicate effectively when they:
    • Read, retain, and apply published ideas
    • Write clearly and accurately in a variety of contexts and formats
    • Speak clearly and coherently in both formal and informal settings
    • Demonstrate active listening skills and effective interpersonal communication
    • Employ the vocabulary of the subject being studied
    • Become proficient in a second language or in an alternative form of communication
  2. Information Competency
    Students show that they have information competency skills when they:
    • Recognize the need for information and/or identify and clarify the question that needs to be answered
    • Differentiate between major and minor arguments or ideas
    • Find and interpret relevant information from text, tables, graphs, maps, media, personal communication, observation, and electronic databases
    • Evaluate authority, veracity and bias of information
    • Utilize the data gathered to draw conclusions or to create new sources of information that can be shared with others
    • Document their sources of information
    • Use technology to acquire and process information
  3. Critical Thinking and Problem Solving
    Students show that they have critical thinking and problem solving skills when they:
    • Evaluate their own beliefs, biases, and assumptions
    • Evaluate strengths, weakness, and fallacies of logic in arguments and information
    • Apply lessons from the past or learned knowledge and skills to new and varied situations
    • Apply the principles of scientific reasoning to solve problems
    • Perform basic computations or approach practical problems by choosing appropriately from a variety of mathematical techniques
    • Devise and defend a logical hypothesis to explain observed phenomenon
    • Recognize a problem and devise and implement a plan of action
  4. Creative Expression
    Students demonstrate creative expression when they:
    • Generate new ideas, express themselves creatively, or solve complex problems in an original way
    • Collaborate to perform the work of others or to create original work
    • Apply feedback to improve their performance
    • Evaluate diverse artistic works in varied media
  5. Civic Responsibility
    Students show an ability to assume civic responsibility when they:
    • Demonstrate a knowledge of current events and social issues
    • Work effectively as a leader and/or participant in group settings
    • Assume civic, political, or social responsibilities
    • Identify their personal convictions and explore options for putting these convictions into practice
    • Accept responsibility for their own actions
    • Demonstrate respect for a diversity of ideas and the rights of others
    • Exhibit personal, professional, and academic honesty
    • Display behavior consistent with the ethical standards within a discipline or profession
  6. Social Interaction and Life Skills
    Students show that they have effective social interaction and life skills when they:
    • Work as an effective member of a team
    • Demonstrate etiquette both in face-to-face and written interactions and communications
    • Use language as appropriate to the situation
    • Utilize conflict resolution skills when appropriate
    • Demonstrate the ability to give and receive constructive feedback
    • Apply time management skills to complete a task
    • Develop stress management skills and/or other skills to maintain health and wellness

Core Competencies By Academic Discipline