A skill is the
learnedability to act with determined results with good execution often within a given amount of time, energy, or both. Skills can often be divided into
domain-general and domain-specific skills. For example, in the domain of work, some general skills would include
time management, teamwork and leadership, self-motivation and others, whereas domain-specific skills would be used only for a certain job. Skill usually requires certain environmental stimuli and situations to assess the level of skill being shown and used.
A skill may be called an art when it represents a body of knowledge or branch of learning, as in the art of medicine or the art of war. Although
the arts are also skills, there are many skills that form an art but have no connection to the
People need a broad range of skills to contribute to the modern economy. A joint
U.S. Department of Labor study showed that through technology, the workplace is changing, and identified 16 basic skills that employees must have to be able to change with it. Three broad categories of skills are suggested and these are technical, human, and conceptual. The first two can be substituted with hard and soft skills, respectively.
Hard skills, also called technical skills, are any skills relating to a specific task or situation. It involves both understanding and proficiency in such specific activity that involves methods, processes, procedures, or techniques. These skills are easily quantifiable unlike
soft skills, which are related to one's personality. These are also skills that can be or have been tested and may entail some professional, technical, or academic qualification.
Holistic competencies is an umbrella term for different types of generic skills (e.g.
problem-solving skills, positive values, and attitudes (e.g.
resilience, appreciation for others) which are essential for life-long learning and whole-person development.
An ability and capacity acquired through deliberate, systematic, and sustained effort to smoothly and adaptively carry out complex activities or job functions involving ideas (cognitive skills), things (technical skills), and/or people (interpersonal skills).
Soft skills are a combination of interpersonal people skills, social skills, communication skills, character traits, attitudes, career attributes and
emotional intelligence quotient (EQ) among others.
^Chan, Cecilia K.Y.; Fong, Emily T.Y.; Luk, Lillian Y.Y.; Ho, Robbie (November 2017). "A review of literature on challenges in the development and implementation of generic competencies in higher education curriculum". International Journal of Educational Development. 57: 1–10.
^Chan, Cecilia K. Y.; Yeung, Nai Chi Jonathan (27 May 2020). "Students' 'approach to develop' in holistic competency: an adaptation of the 3P model". Educational Psychology. 40 (5): 622–642.
^Cowan, Ruth Schwartz (1997). A Social History of American Technology. New York: Oxford University Press. p. 179.
^Robles, Marcel M. (12 August 2016). "Executive Perceptions of the Top 10 Soft Skills Needed in Today's Workplace". Business Communication Quarterly. 75 (4): 453–465.