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Welcome to Space4Careers, the blog of the Centre for Career & Personal Development at Canterbury Christ Church University. This blog does what it says on the tin, it provides an opportunity for anyone who is interested in all aspects of careers work to find a little bit of space in their busy lives to think about current issues and trends. If you like or dislike, agree or disagree with what you see, please respond and let us have your views. We'd love to hear from you.

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Canterbury Christ Church University.

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Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Is Careers Guidance Training ageist?

With the development of the new Adult Advancement and Careers Service comes the introduction of a new qualification for those working as career guidance practitioners with adults.  LLUK have worked hard to establish this Diploma as a minimum level 6, and it is likely that universities may run it at post graduate level 7 –the latter being the same level as the current Qualification in Career Guidance (QCG).  The difference is that the QCG consists of 120 credits, the new Adult Diploma will be 60 credits.  The QCG has traditionally been aimed at those wanting to work with young people although many graduates from the programme successfully pursue careers in the adult career guidance sector.

I have a few questions:

Do you feel there is such a difference between working as a careers professional with young people and working as a careers professional with adults that we really require two different qualifications?

Do you think we need a different knowledge base? Do we need different skills or do we use the same skills in different ways?

Why do you think it is that the adult qualification will be only half the size of the QCG?  Does working with adults really require less knowledge or fewer skills, hence a shorter programme of study?

I personally wonder if there are not as many differences between the work with different groups of adults (professionals, women returners, unemployed, ex prisoners etc) as there are differences between working with young people and adults?

What do you think?  I am currently working on developing the Adult Diploma and would really like to have your thoughts.
Barbara Shottin


  1. Alison Fielding21 May 2010 at 16:17

    My view is that there is a common core of skills supported by a process framework which can enable practitioners to work effectively with any client, whatever their age. What varies is the knowledge base - though I am firmly of the opinion that we can still help even when we do not know a lot! - and the context.

    I would welcome an All-age Careers Guidance Service - not one where everyone tried to be all things to all people, but where practioners could develop expertise in working with particular groups of clients.

    This would imply a need for a single qualification, with the possibility of additional modules to cover specialist areas, including work with adult clients, with young people, with unemployed people, with HE students.............

  2. As a student coming to end of the QCG it seems to me that as long as a genuinely person centred approach is followed is doesn't really matter who the client is. It may be that adults and young people have different expectations of the process but as long as both the possibilities and limitations of the interview are explained at the outset where is the difference?