About Core Skills

The Core Skills are a group of five skills that are key to learning and working in today's world. Employers have identified these skills as those that are most likely to be needed in any work environment. This does not mean that every job will need people who are proficient in all five Core Skills but it does mean that every job will require some level of ability in some or all of these skills.

The five Core Skills are: Communication, Numeracy, Information and Communication Technology, Problem Solving and Working with Others. Each Core Skill is available at levels 2 to 6 of the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (SCQF).


ICON: Communication - rounded cornersCommunication skills underpin almost all personal, social, learning, and working activity. They are essential in clarifying one's own thoughts, in interacting and conversing with others, in expressing thoughts and in conveying information, feeling and opinions.

The Core Skill in Communication has two components:


ICON: NumeracyNumeracy skills are necessary for coping with the demands of everyday life, including work and study, people need to be comfortable with numbers, and with graphs, symbols, diagrams and calculators.

The Core Skill in Numeracy has two components:

Information and Communication Technology

ICON: Information and Communication TechnologyInformation and Communication Technology focuses on the ability to use IT to process information in ways which will be useful in work and in the home - it is not about developing IT specialists.

The Core Skill in ICT has two components:

Working with Others

ICON: Working with OthersWorking with Others develops the skills needed to co-operate with others in learning and working situations to identify and achieve shared goals.

The Core Skill in Working with Others has two components:

Problem Solving

ICON: Problem Solving Problem Solving develops the skills needed for tackling issues and problems in personal, social, vocational and occupational contexts.

The Core Skill in Problem Solving has three components: