Blueprint for Careers

This week I’ve been presenting about the Blueprint for Careers at a couple of LSIS events. This has really renewed my interest in the Blueprint and reminded me why I think that it is potentially so important.

The Blueprint is a framework that sets out a series of skills, attributes, knowledge and abilities that people need to effectively develop their career. I think that it is a really powerful tool to underpin career education and guidance.

Unfortunately LSIS is being closed down. At the present time it is not clear who will take its work forward or whether the Excellence Gateway (its resource platform) will continue to exist. Given this I thought that I might rescue the Blueprint materials and upload them to my scribd account so that they wouldn’t get lost.

The key documents are

I’ve also pulled out early documents that set out the original thinking, how the Blueprint relates to other frameworks and the evaluation of the early pilot.

I’ve also published an academic article in the British Journal of Guidance and Counselling looking at the history and conceptual basis of the Blueprint.

There is also plenty of stuff on this blog tagged with the “blueprint” tag that may also be of interest.

I hope that another organisation can be persuaded to pick up the Blueprint now that LSIS will no longer be able to champion it.


Understanding and implementing the Blueprint for Careers (Free event – 22nd November)

LSIS is organising a free workshop on the 22nd November in London to explore the Blueprint for Careers and how it can support career development and employability. LSIS trialled the Blueprint for Careers with providers across the learning and skills sector including colleges, ACL, WBL, schools and universities. Feedback from staff and learners was very positive and enabled the development of a new English version of the Blueprint.

The workshop will provide an overview of the Blueprint for Careers and the free resources that have been produced to support its implementation. It will also explore how it links to current agendas including employability. We will also look at how it can be applied in different contexts. The session will be interactive.  

Book a place on the workshop 

The Blueprint framework for career management skills: a critical exploration

We’ve just published a new article entitled The ‘Blueprint’ framework for career management skills: a critical exploration. This article examines the how the Blueprint framework for career management skills has developed across implementations in the USA, Canada and Australia. I hope that the article will be particularly useful given the fact that new version of the Blueprint have now been launched in England and Scotland.

The various iterations of the Blueprint sought to create a competency framework that articulates the concept of career management skills for a range of audiences (careers workers, policy-makers, teachers and end users). The Blueprint framework sets out an approach to career development which is underpinned by a learning paradigm. Its advocates reject the idea that career is just about making vocational choices and argue that in flexible and dynamic labour markets individuals need the ability to actively manage their careers. The term ‘career management skills’ is used to describe the skills, attributes, attitudes and knowledge that individuals need in order to do this. The task of careers work is accordingly conceived as fostering learning and personal development. The Blueprint framework thus represents an attempt to describe a set of learning outcomes which can be focused upon at different times during a life journey and to detail a developmental process through which these outcomes can be acquired.

It is argued that despite the lack of an empirical basis for the Blueprint the framework forms a useful and innovative means through which career theory, practice and policy can be connected. The article argues that the framework comprises both core elements (learning areas, learning model and levels) and contextual elements (resources, community of practice, service delivery approach and policy connection) and goes on to explore each of these elements.

Unfortunately the article isn’t available in open access at the moment. I’m investigating ways to open it up but in the meantime feel free to contact me if you would like to talk further about the Blueprint.

Blueprint for Career (produced by LSIS for England)

I’ve been involved in a project with the Learning and Skills Improvement Service to create a Blueprint for Careers for England.

The project started with the Australian and Canadian blueprints and trialled them with a variety of learning providers. The Blueprint was then rewritten based on the feedback.

The new Blueprint for Careers is now available.

Further details about the background to the project are available at

The project is ongoing so stay tuned for further developments.