Careers guidance continues to be a core part of careers services work in Higher Education Institutions. UEA Careers Service at CareerCentral offers two types of advice and guidance appointment, the 15-minute quick query and the 45 minute guidance session.
- Quick queries are typically used for feedback on a CV or application form, for basic information or for advice on many aspects of seeking and applying for further study and work.
- Guidance appointments address situations where simple information and advice are not sufficient. Commonly these include clients in various states of uncertainty, confusion and fear or with issues of low self-esteem and confidence that prevent them from acting effectively. Guidance practitioners use skills from counselling, coaching and advice work to help clients gain more clarity about their situation. Guidance can also assist by helping clients to reflect on and overcome the impact of issues such as low self-esteem, pressure from peers or family, or misleading stereotypes about work and further study.
In Higher Education careers guidance services the emphasis is on empowering clients towards greater levels of self-understanding, decision making and action through a non-directive approach. The longer guidance appointments in particular present a rare opportunity for a student to discuss their situation confidentially with a professionally trained UEA staff member for up to 45 minutes. A five-year longitudinal study on the effectiveness of university careers guidance has recently been completed (Bimrose and Barnes 2008). A very high proportion of clients found their guidance ‘useful' (98%, n=49) immediately after their guidance interview. Four years later, 69% (n=20) of clients remaining in the study still believed that the guidance had been useful. National surveys consistently show that students value one-to-one guidance highly compared to other careers related services such as information provision, workshops and talks.
Bimrose, J. & Barnes, SA. (2008) Adult Career Progression and Advancement: a Five Year Study of the Effectiveness of Guidance. Institute for Employment Research, Warwick. Full report (PDF).