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Linking careers to the curriculum in STEM subjects

A teacher explains the approach her department took to begin to embed careers learning and consider what ways student understanding could be enhanced
EMMA: Personally, when the school had mentioned introducing careers into the whole scheme of work, it initially seems really overwhelming. So you think, oh my gosh. I’ve got scheme of work. I’ve got to get careers in here, there, and everywhere. And it’s going to take forever, and we’ll have to make really tenuous links. I think my advice would be, start small. So have a discussion. Sit down with your department, have a discussion like we have. And think, where are the easy wins? Where can we easily add careers in? Where can we make really clear links that the students are going to be able to have some practical experience, as well, obviously, just having a discussion, as well.
We’re at that point now, where we’re not finished. We’ve not applied it everywhere. We’re just at those really initial stages, is how can we make those links? And then, I can see it developing where, every time we do a unit– and obviously, you’ll repeat units throughout many years. But every time we do one, we’ll hopefully– it’ll become obvious. I will be able to think, hang on a minute. When I’m teaching this, what can I link careers to? So I think it’s really important not to be overwhelmed in one go, by thinking, oh, my gosh. I’ve got to do it all at once. I think it’s definitely a developing thing over time.
So find out where your easy wins are, and then, develop as you go along.

How you link your curriculum to career learning will no doubt vary by the subject and phase of education (11-14 years; 14-16 years; post-16). In this video, Emma explains the approach her department took to begin to embed career learning and consider what ways career learning could enhance student understanding.

There are a number of common themes that we will look to unpick throughout this course that translate across phase and subject:

  • Using an employer to provide context to a part of the curriculum (through competition, visit, activity, collaborative projects or other planned activities).
  • Providing information on the further study routes and careers that link to your subject (through real life examples, case studies, job descriptions or other materials).
  • Highlighting the employability skills involved in participating in a project or activity and reflecting on what types of careers these skills would be useful to in the future.

Careers linked teaching can range from small scale lesson tweaks, to more strategic projects and partnerships. The aim of this course is to equip you with the knowledge and experience to take your own curriculum and embed careers learning throughout its content. With students at the heart of the process, we will help you build their ‘Careers Learning Journey’, giving you clarity over the career learning that is happening in your lessons and your students a clear road map of the career learning in your classroom.

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Linking Curriculum Learning to STEM Careers

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