What do students want from career education?
Providing a quality career education plan helps students and parents see that career development is a life-long process rather than a ‘stage’ or single decision. Year 10 students indicated that they have a desire for more information from sources such as:
- career expos
- open days
- guest speakers
- information sessions.
They also expressed a need for more information regarding courses, post-secondary education and careers to assist them in their decision making.
Year 11 and 12 students shared the same overall desire for accessing and receiving more information. Additionally, Year 12 students indicated a desire for access to a career adviser for more in-depth and targeted counselling in the way of information and advice and a desire for work experience.
Students who responded that they did not believe career education to be very important at this time, recognised that it will become a priority in the future.
Students go to parents and carers for career advice
When asked who they feel most comfortable discussing their career options with, students rated parents highest. This was followed by a career adviser, friends, teachers and other people they know and trust.
As students age, they move beyond their parents and friends and look to alternative sources for career-related information, such as someone working in the industry and career advisers.
How to provide parents and carers with more information
It is important to examine how to provide parents with the proper information and knowledge to best assist their child in their career development.
Students and parents positively rated receiving regular email updates containing career information from the school career adviser. Career advisers also indicated the use of email was an efficient way of disseminating information to all students.
Schools need a career education plan
The outcomes of discussions with students about what their needs are in relation to career education in school suggest the need for a comprehensive career curriculum. Qualified career advisers provide specific career information and support tailored to students’ developmental levels.
Educating parents and peers on how best to support students during their career development and involving industry where appropriate, is helpful to students throughout their career development and decision-making processes.