Developing students’ transferable skills through service leadership of inclusive learning community

Atara Sivan*, Vicky C W Tam, Tony Ling Fung Chow

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in book/report/conference proceedingConference proceedingpeer-review


One important aim of higher education is to develop students’ attributes and skills that can be applied in their future career. Apart from contributing to employability, the skills students gain during university experience can enhance personal and social capacity and prepare students to take leadership roles in the community. This paper presents a study examining the development of university students’ transferable skills through active participation in an inclusive learning community consisting of adolescents with and without special educational needs. University students received training to take service leadership role of the learning community as part of a general education capstone course. The study adopted a mixed methods design. Pre- and post-course questionnaire survey and follow-up interviews were conducted with a sample of 27 university students enrolled in the course. Data analysis revealed a statistically significant increase in the scores of attributes related to appreciation of diversity, respect, contribution to society, and civic engagement after completing the course. Thematic analysis of the qualitative data indicated demonstration of service leadership skills, enhanced understanding of social inclusion, and cultivation of community engagement values. Students demonstrated empathy, respect and effective communication. They delegated roles to others and reflected on their leadership experience. Results of the study highlight the importance of empowering university students to undertake leadership of learning community involving diverse populations in real-life settings. This authentic experience contributes to the development of important skills and attributes for students’ personal and social development.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Asian Conference on Education & International Development 2023, Official conference proceedings
Place of PublicationJapan
PublisherThe International Academic Forum (IAFOR)
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023
Event9th Asian Conference on Education & International Development 2023 - Tokyo, Japan
Duration: 27 Mar 202330 Mar 2023

Publication series

NameAsian Conference on Education & International Development, Official Conference Proceedings
ISSN (Print)2189-101X


Conference9th Asian Conference on Education & International Development 2023
Internet address

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Social Sciences(all)

User-Defined Keywords

  • Transferable Skills
  • Service Leadership
  • Learning Community
  • Higher Education
  • Hong Kong


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