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Essential Skills

Futures Lab Essential Skills 1.0

At the Lab, we affectionately refer to these skills as “the PEEPs” for simplicity’s sake. The four areas below are based on a simplified version of the Colorado Essential Skills.

A minimum of 30% of a learner’s grades at the Lab is based on their “soft skills” as measured by their Essential Skills growth. If you would like to see how we support students in their self-assessment, take a look at our PEEPs continuum.


Self-aware: Are you aware of how your emotions influence your behavior?

Initiative: Do you make connections and pursue opportunities that align with your strengths and interests?

Personal Responsibility: Are you able to regulate your thoughts and emotions and adapt your behavior to a variety of situations?

Resilience: Are you comfortable with ambiguity and changing priorities?


Problem Solving: Do you apply a systematic approach to identify, define, and prototype solutions to complex problems?

Divergent Thinking: Are you able to synthesize previous experience and new information to create novel solutions to problems?

Curiosity: Do you regularly ask questions about the world around you?

Courage: Are you willing to risk failure in order to act on creative ideas?


Collaboration: Are you able to work as a member of a diverse team to produce a shared result?

Communication: Are you able to articulate thoughts and ideas in a manner that can be understood?

Global Mindedness: Are you developing solutions that benefit others?

Character: Are you mindful of the impact of your words and actions?


Project Management: Do you establish goals and timelines and take responsibility for delivering high-quality products?

Career Awareness: Are you pursuing a path of inquiry based on knowledge of your interests and strengths?

Information Literacy: Do you develop solutions using information accurately, ethically, and creatively?

Digital Agility: Do you identify, learn, and apply relevant and appropriate technologies to solve complex problems?

Self-Advocacy: Are you able to articulate gaps in your knowledge or skills and seek the resources needed to address them?

PSD does not unlawfully discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, veteran status, age or disability in access or admission to, or treatment or employment in, its programs or activities. A lack of English speaking skills will not be a barrier to admission or participation.