No, discriminatory. Consider asking if they have received their diploma, degree, etc. This will be the root of what you want in most cases anyway.
[quote user="4612155"]No, you can't. Consider having an education section and having them list how many years they attended and if they received their diploma. This way they can also list if they received their education of have an actual degree in something from a college.........[/quote]
I disagree with the above poster. You can ask them anything you'd like. Where the trouble lies is how you use the information.
I disagree with the above poster. You can ask them anything you'd like. Where the trouble lies is how you use the information.[/quote]
Stayathome, I couldn't disagree with you more. In fact, I think it's dangerous for anybody to take what you have said and put it into action at their work place so I'm going to take this a few steps further.
Let's look at how this plays out.
You direct your HR assistant to change the job application to inquire as to year of graduation. After all, you can ask whatever you want as long as you don't do anything naughty with the information. let's say that you want to know what era their training came from to better understand what to ask them about regardnig continuing education.
But, while you were at it, you also decide to ask what language is spoken in the home so that you will better understand the multilinguistic capabilities of your workforce.
Because many positions you hire for entail working outside, you also opt to ask if sun burn is a major health problem.
Now, you have seemingly legitimate business interests for all three of these scenarios. However, when a copy of your job application is blown up to poster size and placed on an easel in front of a jury of your peers and the attorney for the plaintiff asks incredulously how it could possibly matter when they graduated since you could ask the continuing education questions with or without graduation date it starts to look a little awkward for you. Next, the attorney for the plaintiff asks you if perhaps the real reason was simple, straight forward, age discrimination. If your attorney objects, their attorney rolls her eyes before the jury and says, "Withdrawns". If they don't object, the well is poisoned and everything you say will be seen as a suspicious ploy.
The information is entirely unnecessary and it is commonly associated with calculating approximate age.
The second question plays out similarly with respect to ethnicity/national origin.
The third question plays out similarly with respect to easily visible characteristics of race (specifically skin color, which relates to tolerance for solar radiation exposure)
Naturally, questions 2 and 3 are highly unusual but they're there to make a point. They are, within the eyes of the law, not really any different from the question you are saying is ok. To take your exact words to the extreme, you could flat out ask people where they were born, whether or not they were married, if they had children or plans to have children, when they were born, and "where do you go to church?" as long as you didn't do anything improper with the information when, in fact, you would get into trouble with someone and probably pretty fast, and you would lose the case if it came after your practice was established across multiple applicants: no question.