As education systems are diversifying and expanding, the creation of new jobs and opportunities are changing the way individuals make their career choices.
With such changes in place, career planning has become more complex and confusing.
Where formal sources of career guidance are not easily accessible, individuals tend to rely on their family and friends, leading to choices where they end up in careers they do not see a successful future in.
So, what is the way forward? How can you make the right career decision?
Well, career guidance experts can help you with that.
Here, in this article, we will tell you how!
Keep reading and you will find out what career guidance includes, how is it any different from career counselling, why is career guidance for students necessary and where can you seek career guidance in Delhi.
So what are you waiting for, let’s get started!
For starters, we will begin by explaining the definition of career guidance and then discuss the difference between career guidance and career counselling.
Stay tuned and take in all the important information.
What is Career Guidance?
Career guidance is the process of helping individuals (school/college students or professionals) in making adequate educational and occupational choices and in taking career decisions based on the demand and requirements of the future of work.
Career guidance helps individuals make a shift from the general understanding of life and work to a more specific understanding of the realistic and practical career options that are available to them.
According to Collins dictionary,
“Career Guidance refers to the advice and information about careers that helps individuals, esp. young people, decide on a career and also teaches them how to pursue their chosen career.”
The process of career guidance for students involves helping them to achieve their identified career options or acquiring their professional goals. The role of a career guidance expert ranges from acting as a guide to leading the entire course of action.
Take for an example, a student is pretty sure about what he wants to do, say he wants to become an Architect. So, proper career guidance would help him choose the right stream in 10th class, what entrance exams he should prepare for, which colleges to seek admission in and what scholarships are available for him.
The most interchangeable terms are Career guidance and career counselling. But can these terms be really used as an alternative? Let’s find out what is the difference between career guidance and career counselling in India.
What is the difference between career guidance and career counselling?
The difference between career guidance and career counselling is that on one hand guidance is assisting individuals in achieving their desired career goals which includes acting as a guide, leading and setting up a course of action, whereas career counselling, not very different from guidance, is a process which helps individuals in knowing and understanding themselves through career assessment tests or psychometric tests.
In the career counselling process, an individual’s interests, personalities, abilities and aptitudes are evaluated through a psychometric test, and on the basis of the report generated, the individual is guided towards a particular direction or career path. While career counselling is mostly recommended after 10th/ 12th or graduate level, individuals can go for career guidance at any point in life either to discuss their future goals and career aspirations or to understand the prospects of the career they are currently pursuing or other reasons.
Who benefits from Career Guidance and Counselling programs?
Career guidance and counselling programs are now more vital than ever; helping individuals acquire the knowledge, skills and information necessary to identify the right options and explore various career options.
- If you are in class 10th or have just completed 10th and want to decide which stream to choose for your higher secondary education
- If you are in class 12th or have just completed class 12th and have not decided what subject to follow
- If you have decided your career stream after 12th class but are not sure what to pursue in graduation
- If you are not sure or confident of your career path
- If you want to explore alternative career paths
Then career guidance and counselling program would benefit you a lot in finding answers to your doubts.
A proper career counselling would help you understand your core interest areas, aptitudes, and personalities; would empower you to distinguish between your strengths and weaknesses, and most importantly would allow you to explore multi career options before you choose the right career path.
Take a look at each of the groups who benefit from career guidance and counselling programs:
- Class 9th and 10th students: Students of class 9th and 10th who are at the edge of making the most vital career decision i.e. of choosing a stream to pursue for higher education benefit the most. Taking professional career guidance and counselling program early on in life secures a student’s career and helps him/ her in making the right carer choices.
- Class 11th and 12th students: Students at this phase struggle a lot and often feel pressurised to make career choices based on others’ opinions. The best way to beat these challenges and realize one’s maximum potential is by taking help from professional career counselling services.
- College graduates/ Working professionals: According to the economic times report, only about 20% of the employees are satisfied with their jobs. With proper career guidance and counselling, college graduates and working professional can plan for a career that matches their interests and personality and helps them grow.
Proper career guidance would help you in implementing and leading toward a future course of action and assist you in making informed educational and occupational choices. Be it a school student or a working professional, anyone who takes career guidance and counselling benefits from it.
Why is Career Guidance important for students?
- Career is a much larger and significant part of our lives today and any decision in terms of career planning now has to be taken with the utmost attention. With numerous courses, certifications, colleges, job opportunities available, choosing the right career path could become intimidating for students.
- An adequate choice of career will not only offer an effective job opportunity but allows a student to embrace a satisfactory and respectful lifestyle. Also, the desired career path engages an individual making them more informed, confident, and dedicated. Hence the importance of career guidance and counselling cannot be ruled out.
- Lifestyle and personality are the reflection of one’s values and mostly, the professional life they lead. When we grow up, our personal choices, goals, and future plans start revolving around the kind of job we have and the flexibility it can offer.
- India is a developing country and its power lies in the young minds. They must understand the importance of career guidance to make an informed decision regarding their career progressions. To help students reach their maximum potential, that’s where the need of career counsellors comes up.
- Career counsellors act as the backbone of the education sector and empower students in making the right career choices early on in their lives.
- Career counselling or career guidance process involves individuals (school or college students or professionals) exploring various career options, understanding more about the opportunities, analysing the career prospects and earning potential. The process also includes an all-inclusive career assessment test which evaluates individuals’ interests, strengths and weaknesses, ability/aptitude, personality traits and capabilities.
- Career counselling in India is still not the most preferred choice for students and parents alike. Sheer lack of awareness and understanding of the importance and benefits of career counselling is one of the many reasons why career counselling is not the first choice for both the students and parents. The road toward a right career path originates from the right approach and knowledge of the future trends and prospects of different career clusters.
What are the key components of Career Guidance and Counseling Programs?
Proper career planning sets up a strong foundation for your future and gives you a steady path to focus on your goals. But the process of career planning for students of class 10th/ 12th or working professionals is not an easy feat! Uncertainty or lack of clarity about various careers; little or no information about the latest trends restricts many students in reaching their maximum potential.
With the best career counselling and guidance program, individuals become well equipped with the right information in making suitable career choices.
But what are some of the key features / components proper career guidance or counselling programs must have?
Let’s find out.
A full-stack Career Guidance and Counselling program must involve:
- State-of-the-art career library: A technology-empowered career feed that enables students to explore and learn about diverse career fields and allows them to research about various career clusters is one of the most important components any career guidance institute should possess. The career library must have comprehensive information on careers, specialized occupational tracks, work profiles, job opportunities, earning potential and career prospects etc.
- Access to a reliable and standard psychometric assessment test: A Psychometric test is necessary to understand the existing /underlying skills and interests of the student that helps students to make informed decisions about their future course of study. A career guidance program should offer a standard and reliable career assessment test to help individuals understand their core competencies and skills.
- Opportunity to explore multiple options: After a psychometric test is done, individuals should get the freedom to explore multiple career options before selecting a final career path. A psychometric test report recommends a few career clusters based on the individual’s interests and personality traits.
- Guidance from trained career counsellors: A proper career counselling and guidance program should provide one-to-one counselling services from trained and qualified career counsellors. Career counsellors should have the knowledge and understanding of labour markets changes and a firm understanding of the complexities of the workplace to give proper career guidance to students.
- End-to-end support: Career guidance process does not simply end with helping individuals find the right career choice; it involves end-to-end support with the counsellors via online chat and video calling services. From helping students find the right career to keeping them updated with the latest college applications and entrance examinations, a career guidance program should support individuals till they feel they require guided assistance.
Now that we have discussed about what all features and components should a career guidance and career counselling in India must possess, now let us understand 5 reasons why career guidance has become a necessity
5 Reasons why Career Guidance has become a necessity in today’s time
Educators in India are meticulously working to improve and achieve great results in the education sector. And, career counsellors are one of those. Career counselling in India has not been very popular over the past many years. But things are changing now.
Career counsellors offer their expertise to enlighten the right career route to an individual. When schools or institutes lack in providing proper guidance to the students, career counsellors come to the rescue. It is the utmost responsibility of a counsellor to show impactful guidance to the ones who are in need. Here are the top explanations to understand the importance of career guidance and why career counselling can drive one’s progress in the right direction.
The 5 reasons why career guidance has become a necessity in today’s time are:
#1 Career counsellors are well-aware of all the opportunities
The most vulnerable stage in terms of career is high school. Uncertainty and lack of clarity drive most students toward making wrong career choices. To make students more aware of the career opportunities available for them, career counselling plays an essential role.
Based on the knowledge, research, and expertise level, career counsellors help the students to understand the current market scenario and job opportunities. They are the right people to ask and explore a desired as well as a new but suitable career path. For example, most of the students are not aware of the rewarding fields like astrophysics, ethical hacking, bartending, and others. With thorough research and effective guidance, career counsellors allow one to make an informed decision. Career counsellors empower students with the necessary information and help them make the right career choices.
Career counsellors keep them updated with all the current requirements and leading platforms in the market. When you are in doubt regarding what career field to select, take help from career counsellors. By breaking your mindset, they can introduce you to all the effective alternatives present in the market.
For example, most of the students are not aware of the rewarding fields like astrophysics, ethical hacking, bar tending, and others. With thorough research and effective guidance, career counsellors allow one to make an informed decision.
#2 Embrace broad perspective to examine career skills
And, if you won’t like your job taking a career switch may become challenging.
In this emerging tech-world, the education sector is encompassing tools that can produce defined and measurable results. Similarly, counsellors implement technology-equipped tools like personality tests, aptitude tests, and others that are helpful in making smart decisions.
Using psychometric tests, career counsellors evaluate your interests, personality types, aptitudes and capabilities. This will help you understand your potential and skills in terms of a professional aspect and enable your career counsellor to filter most suitable job types as per your assessment report.
#3 A clear road-map towards a fulfilling career
For those who check Google maps on their phone will know how precisely it displays the path to a destination. In the same wake, career counsellors drive a student towards his right career path by defining a clear road-map for him. A right career map is an impressive tool for a student to stay focus and achieve beneficial results.
Career counselling in India is not limited to a platform that asks you about your desired career choices. It is a process that encourages students towards analysing their skills, understanding their career matches, and embracing the most optimal career solution. Career counsellors contribute by strategizing a robust career plan for the students.
#4 Resolve career conflict between children and parents
Most of the time, parents assume that they know the best for their children and hence, take career decision based on that. Children, as a result, feel suffocated and live their entire life struggling at a job they had never wished for. These situations usually give rise to conflicts and make career planning an even more difficult puzzle to solve.
Career advisers respect and understand the viewpoints of both parents and children and therefore, suggest an optimal middle path. Career counsellors are unbiased, and thus, deliver a balanced opinion by making both parties understand the details of career options.
Moreover, career counsellors are not only career experts but also understand human behaviour. With the knowledge and expertise counsellor’s possess, they guide and motivate people to follow high-yielding results. Career counselling is the gateway to the best career move for both children as well as parents.
#5 Connect and grow your career opportunities with domain experts
A career counsellor is someone whose profile makes him connect with many industry experts. Thus, they are not a single entity but a gateway to get acquainted with a broader network. So, even if you have already made up your mind about a job destination, consulting with career counsellors can open up new channels and opportunities for you.
When increasing competition and extensive courses are confusing you, knock on the most trusted door of career counselling. Career counsellors can help you to traverse the right directions in a career like no other. Moreover, by understanding the mentality of children and their parents, career counsellors find a suitable path to conquer the career dilemma. Career counsellors are a ladder to a successful career. So, explore the services to find about the most important career path for you. They motivate the student to consider available and informative routes.
Grab better and fulfilling opportunities in life by interacting with career counsellors to surpass any ambiguous or doubtful career boat. The career experts will help you to sail in ease through thick and thins of professional life.
The above article presented a detailed explanation of Career Guidance and how individuals can benefit from it. The article also touched upon the importance of career guidance and why students, as well as professionals, must understand the role of career guidance and counselling while making career decisions.
So what are you waiting for now? Talk to iDreamCareer’s expert career counsellors and find out what your true calling is!
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Shruti Verma is a researcher and analyst in the areas of careers, industries, and education. She has completed her Masters in English Literature and is an alumnus of Delhi University and IP University. She interned during her masters at iDreamCareer and later joined iDC full-time as a Content Analyst. She is determined to secure an expert position in content space with the guidance of experienced mentors within the iDC team.