Welcome to Space4Careers

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.

Please note, the content of this blog represents the views of the individual blogger, not those of

Canterbury Christ Church University.

View the website for the Centre for Career and Personal Development

Wednesday, 30 June 2010

Policy Update

The good news is that the launch of the careers service for adults has now been officially confirmed, and the contractors have been announced. The brand is to be – wait for it – Next Step! This will now apply to the whole service, including what was formerly Learndirect Advice and is currently the Careers Advice Service. The future of the ‘advancement’ aspects of the service, building on the recent prototypes, is less certain: it was due to be rolled out later, but may now be in question.
The key issue now is whether the service for adults is to be part of a new all-age service; and if so, how and when it will be integrated into Connexions/career IAG services for young people. Linked to this is concern about the immediate future of these latter services, in the light of the massive cuts in local-authority funding: already there are rumours of severe cuts in Connexions budgets in some areas. Also, the new Government’s policy to encourage ‘good’ schools to become academies could lead to fuerther erosion of local-authority services, and hence of the partnership model for CEIAG provision (though it is still unclear how many schools will apply for academy status).

The notion of an all-age service was in the Conservative Party manifesto, and the Liberal Democrats also indicated prior to the General Election that they supported it. So will these commitments be confirmed quickly enough to maintain a sufficient base on which to construct it?

Any feedback on how these forces are playing out at local level would be welcome.
Tony Watts

Wednesday, 23 June 2010

Careers videos on websites

Until this week, I hadn't given much thought to what careers websites are trying to achieve that carry video case studies. There are a growing number including careersbox, icould, U-explore and pods4jobs. I suppose I had assumed that they were trying to provide careers information for young people that did not require a lot of reading. Young people for their part would choose to view case studies that matched their interests; while the goal of the producers of the videos would be to boast that they'd added another 20 titles this month! Then I met Andrew Manson of Talking Jobs. His stance is different. He has filmed a set of 40 case studies and written a number of career learning activities around them that can be completed in the classroom or by independent study out of it. Andrew is on a mission to raise awareness of the interdependence and connectedness of jobs in society, to use video stories to help young people clarify their own values and identities; and to enable young people to learn how to manage their careers (even from people who are doing jobs that they themselves might never want to do). It has made me realise that we all need to probe the rationale behind the sites we use and to discuss whether we think they will contribute to good career learning. Has anyone come across any other well-thought out websites with video case studies?
Anthony Barnes

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Happy Birthday CCPD!

Last week we celebrated the 10th anniversary of CCPD with tea, strawberries and cream.  In August 2000 the College of Guidance Studies (COGS) merged with Canterbury Christ Church University and moved from its premises in Swanley to the Salomons Centre.  COGS had offered qualifications in career guidance since their inception, so people gathered together to celebrate the continuation of the work begun there and the further development of this work in CCPD.

The VC gave a fitting speech, remembering the successful merger and thanking those who made it possible; in particular highlighting the work of Chris Bounds, who we were all pleased to see following his retirement, and Andrew Edwards who led CCPD during its first five years.  Professor Jenny Bimrose from the Institute of Employment Research at the University of Warwick then gave an excellent presentation on her work on three different research projects and afterwards there was time to mingle and catch up with some old friends.

At the event the VC also announced that from September Hazel’s title will be Reader in Career Guidance and Counselling in recognition of her work at CCPD, nationally and internationally. Well done Hazel!

Barbara Bassot

Wednesday, 9 June 2010

Putting the PD back into CCPD!

In a climate when economic 'wellbeing' (or indeed 'recovery'!) is an understandable priority, I would like to reflect on a comment made by a colleague in a recent meeting.  In a discussion about what we intend to achieve at the Centre of Career and Personal Development, I was heartened to hear her proclaim that she would like to see more focus on the PD in CCPD.  We (as a society that is 'spoken to' by the media and political agenda), can sometimes buy into the potrayed hype of 'career', to be self sufficient and to change the dynamic of 'agent' and 'state'. These may indeed impact upon our personal development - in terms of a sense of achievement and perhaps even, success.

At this time we may be consumed with thoughts of 'recession', 'debt' and 'redundancy', so perhaps now more than ever, a little more attention to personal development is in order? Perhaps career decisions motivated by engagement with our personal aspirations will lead us to more fulfilling resolutions, perhaps encouraging people to discover, to explore and to respond to their 'calling' - as contested as this may be in some forums - is the path to real 'recovery'? Furthermore, in reflecting on the PD in CCPD, there is the opportunity to attend to the role of learning (in its many forms) as potential transitional spaces for growth and change, rather than as a means to an end. As an educator, personal development and the role of transitional space is the process that complements the content of the programmes I deliver and I for one, am happy to be reminded of its significance.
Jo Oliver

Wednesday, 2 June 2010

A New Qualification for Youth Support

The activity of ‘career guidance’ involves much more than finding an answer to the question ‘what do I want to do when I grow up?!’ There are times in our lives when we need ‘guidance’ in order to take (or make) opportunities available to us. There is one time in particular, where so much change is taking place (physical, emotional, intellectual, behavioural) that life can sometimes feel confusing (at best) and chaotic (at worst), and where guidance in its broadest sense, is helpful. This time is, of course adolescence.

In recent years the UK Government has responded to the perceived need to offer support to young people through a number of initiatives. Anyone who has visited a school recently will have been struck by the plethora of individuals working in ‘supporting roles’ – learning mentors, personal advisers, teaching assistants, school counsellors, pastoral support workers, education welfare workers and others. Many of these roles are new (they certainly weren’t around in my day!) and it is important, therefore that those who are employed in ‘youth support’ in all its forms, have access to appropriate and rigorous training, leading to professional qualification.

In response to this new and emerging workforce, the CWDC has commissioned a consultation into the development of a Foundation degree for those who work in the ‘Integrated Youth Support Service.’ This qualification will be available to anyone who is employed in a youth support role in either the statutory or voluntary sector. It is hoped that the qualification will be available in 2011.

If you have any views about what such a programme should include, don’t hesitate to get in touch. I’d love to hear your thoughts....

Jane Westergaard