Creating an effective career education plan

Students are more engaged in education and highly motivated about their future when they have a clear understanding of themselves and how they might live and work when they leave school. High quality career education and guidance is an essential part of schooling in preparing young Australians for their future.

Schools with successful career education plans ensure that effective relationships are formed not only inside, but also outside the school community and students are better equipped to make positive and engaged decisions about their future.


Incorporate a whole school approach

A whole school approach to career education means that career education is integrated into the school’s planning, and every staff member has a role to play. Schools with high quality career education plans have strong direction and support from the school’s senior leadership and the school community. An effective career education plan should be developed and overseen by school leadership and an appropriately qualified career development practitioner. Strategies and approaches must be informed by the needs of students, teachers, industry and the broader community.


Teach life career skills

When students see that their learning applies to the real world and their future career pathways, their motivation increases. Teachers should embed career information into their subject teaching and receive training to better shape their students’ understanding of career options. Even contact or homeroom teachers have a role in having meaningful career conversations with students.


Keep everyone informed

Schools should provide students, parents and carers with accurate, up-to-date, impartial and user-friendly information about their options. This includes higher education, VET, school-based apprenticeships and traineeships. Career advisers should help students understand how labour market trends impact on their future employment prospects and post-school pathways. This can then inform their career decisions.


Build relationships with employers and the local community

Schools should build relationships with employers, industry, VET providers, universities, parents and the local community to support their career education programs. These mutually beneficial partnerships help students to explore the world of work in activities that inform their future career decisions.


Address individual student needs

Career advisers should tailor their services to individual student needs at significant points in their schooling. This helps students to develop self-awareness and self-confidence in making career and education-related decisions. Students should make individual pathway plans to review and update with career advisers and teachers.


Provide expert guidance

Career advisers should provide students with timely and accurate information on occupations and qualification requirements based on labour market information. They should also provide resources and guidance to parents and carers to assist their children.