Naming of the parts

Today we have visitors from Lillihammer University College at iCeGS. We are having a session where we are trying to explain the career guidance system in the UK to them.

This is the kind of ground that I plan to cover.

Naming of the Parts


Time to lobby the UK government on careers

The UK Careers Sector Strategic Forum has issued a Briefing Note to highlight four key outstanding issues that must be addressed in the Education Bill to ensure young people get the help they need to make informed decisions about subject choices, careers choices, qualification choices, and routes and pathways into further and higher education and into the world of work.

The Forum calls for clarity on:

  • the nature of the careers services young people should receive;
  • how the quality of career guidance provision for young people is to be assured;
  • how breaches in the provision of schools’ new statutory duty will be dealt with;
  • extending the remit and funding of the National Careers Service to cover NEET young people.

I’ve attached a press release and briefing note about the current situation.

E-petition on careers advice for young people in the UK

I’ve just signed the e-pettition on careers advice.

We call upon Ministers to ensure that all young people up to age 19 can, if and when they choose, access face to face quality assured impartial careers advice and guidance – provided by professionally competent careers advisers who have knowledge and skills informed by the labour market.

I was the 2782nd person to sign. If you want to add your signature go to

Helping individuals succeed: Transforming career guidance

The UK Commission for Employment and Skills have released a new report entitled Helping individuals succeed: Transforming career guidance. It is a thoughtful action orientated summary of a series of papers that the UK Commission has produced over the last year or so.

Key messages include:

  • It is important to provide a diverse range of ways to access career guidance. Different technologies and different sources are likely to be important in ensuring that career guidance is available to all of those that need it.
  • Technology is likely to be crucial in driving and enabling the development of career guidance in the future. It is important that individuals are digitally literate, but also that careers workers are able to use technologies to innovate.
  • Giving people access to high quality career and labour market information is an essential underpinning of the career guidance system. New technologies make this easier and allow skilled individuals (or their intermediaries) to manipulate the  information in ways that make it more relevant to them.

The paper then goes on to make the following proposals for government action. It argues that the government should

  • help to broker new relationships between different parts of the sector
  • work with key agencies and stakeholders to assure the quality of provision
  • work with key agencies and stakeholders to support individuals to make good use of the career support market
  • work with key stakeholders to make LMI available and accessible
  • support the professionalisation of the careers practitioner workforce
  • work with key stakeholders to review and evaluate the operation and efficiency of the career support market

The paper is based on the following papers – which are all also worth a look

Expert paper 1
‘Careering through the Web’. The potential of Web 2.0 and 3.0 technologies for career development and career support services’ (iCeGS, June 2010)

Expert paper 2
‘Labour Market Information (LMI), Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and Information, Advice and Guidance (IAG)’. The way forward?’ (Warwick Institute for Employment Research, June 2010)

Expert paper 3
‘Enhancing choice? The role of technology in the career support market’ (iCeGS, January 2011)

Expert paper 4
‘The use of LMI in career direction and learning’ (GHK, January 2011)

Expert paper 5
‘Integrating new technologies into careers practice: Extending the knowledge base’ (IER, March 2011)

Expert paper 6
‘Career Guidance. Understanding the behaviour of individuals’ (INON (summarised by UK Commission), July 2011)

Update on the situation with the UK careers service

Just in case you’ve lost track of where things are up to in relation to the new UK All-Age Careers Service you might be interested to see Tony Watt’s letter in the TES. The upshot of it all is that careers advice for young people is about to be scrapped altogether by the government. This will effectively make a nonsense of the claim that we have an “all-age” careers service.

#cannexus11 presentation on technology and career support in the UK

Here is my first attempt at my presentation for #cannexus11 – I’ve left it to the last minute, but as ever any comments on it would be appreciated.

Essentially I’m trying to explore what possibilities technology offers for careers support during a critical time like the present. My feeling is the development of the all-age service in England offers a huge opportunity to rethink the paradigms on which career support has been based.

My fear is that this opportunity will be missed and we’ll end up with essentially what we’ve already got, but a lot/a bit less of it.