Sources of careers advice

Whether your child is at school, college, in training or looking for work, experts are on hand to help with their plans for the future.

Careers teachers in school

Careers education is taught in all post primary schools across Northern Ireland. Careers teachers increase your child’s knowledge of the world of work and develop their employability skills.

Careers advisers in schools

Careers advisers are professionally trained and are based in careers offices throughout Northern Ireland. A careers adviser is assigned to all post primary schools to support the careers education programme by providing impartial careers information advice and guidance. Speaking to a careers adviser will help your child make successful career choices.

Careers advisers in schools provide the following services:

  • individual career guidance interviews to help with choices from Year 10 onwards (more information on career guidance interviews is set out below)
  • class and group talks on careers options / topics
  • information about further / higher education and training provision
  • information about careers and the skills and qualifications needed
  • information about current and future job opportunities
  • help with CVs, application forms and mock interviews

The careers guidance interview

A careers guidance interview is a one-to-one meeting between your child and a careers adviser.

This interview is held in your child’s school, lasts approx 30 to 40 minutes and usually takes place in Year 12. The purpose of the careers guidance interview is to help your child to consider their career options and to make informed, suitable and achievable career decisions.  

During the interview, the careers adviser will encourage your child to explore their interests, discuss how they are getting on in school, their likes and dislikes, work experience and how these may impact on their career ideas.  

If your child hasn’t any clear ideas about what they want to do with their lives, the careers adviser will help them to identify suitable options and discuss these with them.

If you wish to be at the careers guidance interview, you will need to contact your child’s careers teacher.

Setting goals

As part of the Careers Guidance interview process, the careers adviser will draw up a personalised plan to help your child achieve their goals.

The plan includes:

  • where your child is on their career path
  • what your child wants to achieve
  • how they will get there
  • who can help them achieve their goal

It is important to discuss the plan with your child and to encourage them along the way.

Preparing for a careers guidance interview

In order to get the best from the interview, you should encourage your child to think about:

  • their skills, for example,  good communicator, team player
  • their personal qualities, for example, approachable, well-organised
  • their likes and dislikes in terms of jobs, subjects, interests, aptitudes
  • their career ideas and plans for the future
  • any barriers such as personal circumstances, financial, criminal convictions
  • any qualifications or experience they need for their chosen career

My child has left school – can they still talk to a careers adviser?

The Careers Service continues to offer its services after your child has left school, whether they are in college, university, in training or looking for work. You and your child can arrange to meet a careers adviser by contacting 0300 200 7820 during office hours.

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