NCTN’s Personal & Workplace Success Skills Library

NCTN’s Personal & Workplace Success Skills Library

National College Transition Network (NCTN) has been producing high quality, research-based, comprehensive resources for the field of Adult Education for a number of years. My first exposure to their treasure trove came via the National Career Awareness Project (NCAP) and the Integrating Career Awareness (ICA) into the ABE & ESOL Classroom curriculum guide. The guide, which can be found in the Developing a Future Pathway section of the ACES Resource Library, was instrumental in helping me to understand what the key components of career awareness are and how to layer them into my instruction.

Knowing how valuable I have found their other resources, I eagerly anticipated the unveiling of their new Personal & Workplace Success Skills Library, which was recently debuted at the 2021 COABE Conference.

Overview of the library

According to their website, the Personal & Workplace Success Skills Library  is “a curated collection of resources to guide the integration of personal and workplace success skills into curriculum and instruction, advising and coaching, assessment, and program design. These resources were selected for adult education, higher education, workforce development, and career and technical education programs serving adult and older youth learners and workers, including English language learners.” (Source:

What they have created is a one-stop shop for finding resources related to the following transferable skills:

  • Communication
  • Leadership & Initiative
  • Self-Management
  • Navigating & Using Information
  • Critical & Creative Thinking
  • Digital Literacy
  • Teamwork & Collaboration
  • Respecting Differences
  • Adaptability & Flexibility
  • Emotional Intelligence

Because these skills touch on every category within the TIF, we’re excited to add the Personal & Workplace Success Skills Library as a Featured ACES Resource.

To begin with, there is no account needed in order to access the library. Users don’t need to enter any information at all. The library was designed to be fully searchable, and users can apply different filters, such as Cost and Audience, when conducting a search.

Currently, the library contains over 75 curated resources, and the plan is to add more over time. Although some of the resources do require payment, 34 of them are completely free and others are free with a registered user account. If you click on a resource, you are directed to a page with basic information, including what skills are addressed and key takeaways about the resource.

Library resources

Some of the resources in the library are related to defining these skills, such as our own Transitions Integration Framework (TIF) from ATLAS and the OCTAE Employability Skills Framework.

Others include lessons or teaching materials the can be used to help build these skills with our learners. Some of these skill-building resources also appear in our own ACES resource library, such as Skills to Pay the Bills and the Right Question Institute, but others were new to me.

One great new resource that I found is called From Backpack to Briefcase, and it is a downloadable collection of 14 lessons that cover topics such as Teamwork, Problem Solving, Conflict Resolution, and Time Management (see the full list below). The lessons are free and ready-to-use, and since the PDF documents are fillable, they could easily be adapted for remote learning.

Using the Personal & Workplace Success Skills Library

The library contains a lot of resources, which makes it a great thing to explore over time.

  1. One useful approach might be to check out a new resource every time that you plan a new unit for instruction.
  2. For those who do less lesson planning, you might try using a skills self-assessment with your learners and then searching for new resources based on the needs identified.

Whatever your approach, checking out the Personal & Workplace Success Skills Library is sure to be time well spent.

Using ACES/TIF to Develop Workplace Preparation Activities

It’s not too late to register for tomorrow’s ACES webinar, Using ACES/TIF to Develop Workplace Preparation Activities! We will have three very talented ABE teachers joining us to share workplace preparation activities that they have developed for their own IELCE and IET classes.

Using ACES/TIF to Develop Workplace Preparation Activities
3:00-4:15 pm CDT

Stephanie Sommers, ACES Coordinator ATLAS