Network for Innovation in Career Guidance and Counselling in Europe

Presentations

On Thursday, October 10, participants can choose between two series of lectures. Full abstracts can be found below this overview.


Innovative Practices in Career Guidance and Counselling

Innovative Practices in the Training of Career Practitioners

"A Tool For A University's Employability Strategy"

Andreas Eimer, University of Münster, Germany

"Teaching And Learning Integrated Career Guidance"

Ingrid Bårdsdatter Bakke, The Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences, Norway

"Rational-Emotive Behavior Therapy Career Intervention for High School Students"

Viktoria Kulcsar, Cristina Ivan, Robert Balazsi & Anca Dobrean, Babes-Bolyai University, Romania

"Working with 'Calling' in Career Development Practice"

Gill Frigerio, University of Warwick, UK

"Contact Points for People Who Gained Professional Qualifications Abroad"

Milica Tomić-Schwingenschlögl, Beratungszentrum für Migranten und Migrantinnen, Vienna, Austria

TBA


Full Abstracts

"A Tool For A University's Employability Strategy"

Andreas Eimer, University of Münster, Germany

University study must ensure employability. This premise is embedded in various levels of European education policy. What is lacking, however, are definitions that provide orientation as to what exactly is meant by employability in the context of higher education programmes and how it can be achieved.

This ambiguity explains why different stakeholders in Germany have applied the term in different ways depending on their interests. Universities, in particular, have been repeatedly put on the defensive, and in higher education the term often carries a negative connotation.

In response to this trend, the project “Employability” was developed by the Careers Service of the University of Münster. The goal is to gain a clearer understanding of employability and develop a corresponding implementation strategy. Its focus is the “university” as one type of higher education institution (HEI). The project began by examining the subject-related and cross-disciplinary strengths which a university degree programme provides. The project coordinators developed an instrument called a “Goal Matrix” for establishing an employability concept. This facilitates easier thematic positioning and outlines an operative procedure which department heads and university administrators can apply to their own institution.

The project coordinators are convinced that addressing employability can spark a productive and university-tailored process which can make universities influential agents in this area and, by clarifying the relationship between academic content and professional applicability, can increase student motivation.

More information (mostly in German): https://www.uni-muenster.de/CareerService/uns/projekte/projekt-employability.html


"Rational-Emotive Behavior Therapy Career Intervention for High School Students"

Viktoria Kulcsar, Cristina Ivan, Robert Balazsi & Anca Dobrean, Babes-Bolyai University, Romania

Career decision-making is a complicated task young adults face that is often accompanied by distress or anxiety. This fosters the need for efficient career interventions that target both career decision-making and emotional difficulties. Regular career intervention or prevention programs in Eastern Europe mainly provide information about one’s self (e.g., interests, preference) and the world of work. Rational emotive behavioral therapy (REBT; Ellis, 1962), a form of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) provides help for adolescents to efficiently cope with emotional difficulties associated with the career decision-making process.

The present study aims to investigate the efficiency of an REBT career intervention program implemented in a school setting. School settings are appropriate to deliver group intervention for students. Classes of 11 th grade from Romanian public high-schools’ are randomized to either an REBT intervention or a regular intervention group (N = 235, 59% female, mean age 17.1 years). The intervention is group based, delivered in eight sessions, over eight weeks. Each of the eight modules aimed a different component, for example information about self and world of work, steps of career decision-making, or problem solving. Additionally, in REBT groups we discuss the relationship between irrational beliefs and emotions, cognitive restructuring and emotional problem solving. Homework is given after each session. Career decision-making difficulties together with cognitive (irrational beliefs, worry) and emotional outcomes (distress, anxiety) are measured before and two time points after the intervention.

High school students who participated in our study showed decreased level of worry and irrational beliefs after the intervention. Career decision-making difficulties, and anxiety of the students decreased significantly in the REBT group, but not in the other group. Based on these results we conclude that a group career intervention that includes REBT elements is effective in decreasing both career decision-making difficulties and the anxiety symptoms of high-school students.


"Contact Points for People Who Gained Professional Qualifications Abroad"

Milica Tomić-Schwingenschlögl, Beratungszentrum für Migranten und Migrantinnen, Vienna, Austria

Austria can look back on a long tradition of immigration. Almost 2 million people with migration background live in Austria. Contact points for people who gained professional qualifications abroad (ASTs) advise and assist migrants and refugees in recognizing their qualifications, access to education and labor market integration. They clarify the need for formal recognition and provide information on procedures, the legal situation in each individual case and the content of decisions of recognition authorities. Where appropriate, further offers are organized for specific persons / target groups, including networking meetings of specific occupational groups. Network meetings for dentists, doctors, teachers and other professional groups are organized periodically all over Austria. This way interested parties are informed about recognition, but also successful examples are presented, and mutual exchange and networking is promoted. The involvement of representatives of the recognition authorities and the employer are further components of the event.

In this session, the participants will get acquainted with the concept of a network meeting and, based on this, encouraged to exchange ideas and network.


"Teaching And Learning Integrated Career Guidance"

Ingrid Bårdsdatter Bakke, The Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences, Norway

Scholars and policymakers in Norway discuss how digital technologies offer new ways of communicating and interacting, and how to take advantage of affordances presented by digital technologies in career guidance. Blending face-to-face and digital strategies has been coined integrated guidance (Bakke, Haug & Hooley, 2018). A key aspect is that career guidance is understood and discussed within a learning-paradigm underscoring practitioners’ role as career educators, in addition to Kettunen’s (2015, 2017) concept of co-careering where the career practitioners is a facilitator and contributor to an online community of career actors.

The Inland Norway University of Applied Sciences launched a new course in spring 2019, offering students an introduction to integrated guidance. The course applies principles from the pedagogy of Instructional design (Merrill, Drake, Lacy & Pratt, 1996), where the course structure is set up to exemplify integrated strategies.

The course uses the institution’s digital learning environment Canvas, offering a range of strategies for communication and engaging students, in addition to external digital resources. The students worked on material and tasks of increasing complexity, with consecutive modules presenting a theme, and a theoretical and a practical task. The themes of the modules are: Careering online; The role of technology in career; The role of the practitioner; Digital affordances; Giving career guidance online; Giving integrated guidance; Assessing and evaluating online and integrated guidance. As a concluding task, students will design and implement a new integrated strategy into their practice.

The reflections and experiences in their writing provides valuable insight for the growing field of integrated guidance. By collecting students’ texts into a body of data to be analysed, we hope to gain insights about the practitioner’s perspective when developing integrated guidance strategies. In addition to introduce the course and underlying theoretical perspectives, this presentation will present some of these findings.


"Working with 'Calling' in Career Development Practice"

Gill Frigerio, University of Warwick, UK

As we move away from matching paradigms, 'calling' has emerged as a key way to deepen our work with clients, helping them access their subjective and affective career desires and motivations.

The idea that we can find a path through life by discerning our calling has deep roots in many spiritual and religious traditions, and has become a topic of interest in career studies literature. This has been researched, theorised and a 'Vocation and Calling Questionnaire' been validated by Ryan Duffy et al, but less attention is being paid to working with it in practice. Yet we know that finding meaning and purpose in work is one of the reasons that people seek out the support of career coaches and guidance practitioners.

On the career development programmes at the University of Warwick we have developed an optional module on 'Career, Vocation and Calling' that explores the pros and cons of integrating this with our practice and considers ways and means. In particular, given recent discussion of the psychology of working theory(Blustein) we will consider if this is an approach suitable for everybody, or which includes inappropriate assumptions of work volition.

This paper will make a case for such a standpoint and consider its relevance to pluralistic and secular practice settings. I will outline some key principles needed for appropriate inclusion of 'calling' in a career guidance with individuals and groups as well as offering some practical examples to help those we work with, from job crafting to clarification of call.