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

Monday, 19 November 2012

CCPD presentation in Mannheim

Drs Hazel Reid and Barbara Bassot from the Centre for Career and Personal Development recently attended a three-day conference at Mannheim University in Germany.  The Conference was run by the International Association of Educational and Vocational Guidance and had an audience of over 500 delegates.  They came from all over the world - many from European countries.  The conference title was “Career Guidance for Social Justice, Prosperity and Sustainable Employment, challenges for the 21st Century”.  Mannheim was chosen as the venue as it was the 40th anniversary of the careers guidance course at that university.
The Water Tower, Mannheim
A keynote speech that stood out at the conference was by Professor Ronald Sultana from Malta who spoke on Social Justice.   Professor Sultana highlighted some of the many challenges for career guidance practitioners in promoting equality.
Professor Ronald Sultana, University of Malta

Hazel and Barbara had been invited to present their Model of The Career Thinking Session.  This model offers a reflective space for clients to challenge and question their limiting assumptions about their own career development.  Barbara and Hazel outlined their model and shared the results of recent pilot research into its use.  A question and answer session followed their presentation. 
Barbara said:  A very vibrant discussion followed our presentation.  Audience members were very interested in the model and how it could apply in their own work settings.”   One delegate said that they found the model “absolutely inspirational”.

Hazel Reid added:  We will now be putting further articles forward to disseminate this research more widely.”

For more information about all our work please see details of publications on our website at  www.canterbury.ac.uk/education/ccpd
Rebecca Tee

A mild case of Bubonic Plague

Recently, when I was feeling slightly unwell with various symptoms that do not usually appear together, I looked them up on a ‘Diagnose Yourself’ website. I was able to click on a diagram of a body to show where each symptom appeared and then indicate what the symptom was. After only a moment, I had a list of possible complaints to choose from.
I felt rather like ‘J’, the narrator of ‘Three Men in a Boat’ (one of my favourite books), who looked through a medical dictionary and concluded that he ‘had everything except Housemaid’s Knee’. He had to go to the library to look this up, but I was able to get my diagnosis on my laptop while sitting in front of the fire at home.

So, how is this relevant to Careers work?
I see a direct parallel between my experience of finding out about my medical condition, and someone searching for information about careers. In the past they would have had to go to a Careers Library, usually in a Careers Centre, School or College, where there would be someone to help them find the information they needed.

Now, it is so easy to look things up online, and young people particularly prefer this means of finding information.  There is almost limitless information available at the click of a mouse. Surely this must be a good thing? Well, yes, but it is often nearly impossible to know how accurate, unbiased and up-to-date online careers information is, and if decisions are made on the basis of inaccurate information, it could have far reaching consequences. Much better that someone is signposted to a trustworthy source of online information – and this requires intervention from ‘someone who knows’, preferably a careers professional.

At a time when the Government is indicating that much of the Information, Advice and Guidance provided by the new All-age service will be online, my concern is about how accessible this will be, and who will be providing the IAG. For me, unmediated careers information is possibly even more dangerous than no information. When people are making decisions which may affect their whole lives, we should not settle for less than the best.

Oh, and my mild case of Bubonic Plague cleared up without treatment the next day.
Alison Fielding

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Jane Westergaard's Danish Book

Jane Westergaard, Senior Lecturer at the Centre for Career and Personall Development, today gave a seminar on a live link from Canterbury Christ Church University direct to career guidance students sitting in their lecture theatre at Aarhus University in Denmark. Jane outlined her FAAST model which provides a chronology for planning, preparing and delivering personal learning and development group work.

Jane was asked to give this seminar after the course tutor at the Danish School of Education at Aarhus University heard Jane speak at a conference in Bangalore in India in 2010. At her workshop at this conference, Jane outlined the FAAST model as described in her book “Effective Group Work with Young People” published by the Open University. Realising how useful the book would be for her learners, she encouraged its translation into Danish and also invited Jane to address the students.

Jane introduced the model on a live link-up though an interactive session and then the students, who are all Danish trainee career counsellors, went to put the model into practice. Jane said: “This model helps people who have to run group work sessions to feel confident that they have comprehensively thought through their sessions and that they have an effective plan to use which meets the needs of the group.”

One reader said: “Jane’s book has transformed the way I approach and deliver my group sessions with clients. It is an accessible read and the model really works.”

For more information about all our work and publications see our website at www.canterbury.ac.uk/education/ccpd