New webinar series helps career professionals serve clients living on the autism spectrum

CERIC is pleased to be partnering with the Canadian Association for Supported Employment (CASE) for the first time to offer a 3-part webinar series – The Career Development Professional’s Guide to Effectively Serving Clients Living on the Autism Spectrum with recognized ASD consultant Sarah Taylor.

Currently 1 in 59 children is diagnosed with an Autism Spectrum Disorder, making it the number one neurological disorder diagnosed today. Without an understanding of neurodiversity and some tweaks in methodology, traditional coaching models fail to effectively meet the needs of individuals on the autism spectrum. As more and more people with this diagnosis enter the workforce, this skill set is crucial to the modern-day career practitioner. The series will help practitioners to empower their practice and effectively support high-functioning individuals living with Autism, Asperger’s and Verbal Learning Disorder.

  • Webinar #1: What and How of Autism – and its impact on employment Wednesday, April 15, 2020 | 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm ET
  • Webinar #2: Autism Employment Barriers… and how to get around them Wednesday, April 22, 2020 | 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm ET
  • Webinar #3: Autism Employment Success: He got the job, now what? Wednesday, April 29, 2020 | 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm ET

Taylor is a Principal Consultant at Next Level ASD Consulting. She worked at the renowned Society for Treatment of Autism (located in Calgary) for 17 years and over that time developed her skills in assessment, consultation and advocacy for people who live on the Autism Spectrum. In 2014, Taylor made the switch from working with and advocating for children and youth with Autism Spectrum Disorder to designing and implementing a federally funded program that provided employment supports for adults with autism and coaching support to partner employers.

The cost for the full series is $159. A discount is available for CASE members.

CERIC partners with associations and organizations across Canada and beyond to present webinars that offer timely, convenient and affordable professional development. Previously, CERIC has worked with the New Brunswick Career Development AssociationBC Career Development AssociationOntario Association for Career Management, Canadian Association of Career Educators & Employers, Career Professionals of Canada, Career Development Association of Alberta, Nova Scotia Career Development Association, Canadian Counselling and Psychotherapy Association, and the US-based National Career Development Association.


Free webinar series in April and May with authors of Career Theories and Models at Work

Last year, CERIC offered two series of free webinars based on its book Career Theories and Models at Work: Ideas for Practiceco-edited by Nancy Arthur, Roberta Neault and Mary McMahon. Following the popularity of these learning opportunities, we are continuing to invite more contributing authors to highlight their career development theories through free webinars starting in April.

CERIC’s Career Theories and Models at Work: Ideas for Practice is an international collection of 43 contemporary and emerging career development theories and models that aims to inform the practice of career development professionals around the globe. It is also intended to be used as a text for undergraduate and graduate career counselling courses.

As part of this latest free webinar series, we are offering two English webinars and two French webinars.

  • Webinar #1: Making Sense of Career Transitions Through the Theory of Work Adjustment | Monday, April 20, 2020, 8:00 pm – 9:00 pm ET, presented by Jon Woodend, James Cook University, Australia (English)
  • Webinar #2: An Adaptive Decision-making Approach to Career Counselling | Friday, April 24, 2020, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm ET, presented by Louis Cournoyer, Université du Québec à Montréal, Canada (French)
  • Webinar #3: Psychological Health at Work: The Importance of Taking Care of Our Work and Defending Our Occupation | Monday, April 27, 2020, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm ET, presented by Simon Viviers, Laval University, Canada (French)
  • Webinar #4: Psychology of Working Theory: A Transformative Approach to Work and Career | Friday, May 1, 2020, 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm ET, presented by David L. Blustein, Boston College, USA (English)

Anyone who registers will be sent the webinar recordings. These will be available one week after the webinar series ends. Captions will be added in both English and French to all recordings, making them accessible for all participants.

Learn more about this webinar series and register today.


Latest issue of Canadian Journal of Career Development released

The newest edition of the Canadian Journal of Career Development (CJCD) has just been published, with five articles that range from experiential learning among undergrads to career engagement for older workers.

The Winter 2020 issue includes:

This release of the journal also included notice of a forthcoming Call for Submissions for a special themed issue of CJCD focused on the career and career development needs of Indigenous peoples in Canada.

Canadian Journal of Career Development is a partnership project between CERIC and Memorial University of Newfoundland with the support of The Counselling Foundation of Canada. It is Canada’s only peer-reviewed publication of multi-sectoral career-related academic research and best practices from this country and around the world.

CJCD is published twice a year, once in digital format in the fall and then in both print and digital formats in the winter. It is free to subscribe to the digital editions and all issues of the journal dating back to 2002 are available to access online.


Career development for LGBTQ communities the focus of new CERIC literature search

Individuals who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, or queer (LGBTQ) experience unique challenges in the workplace. Career professionals can support these clients by providing effective career guidance and interventions. In the new CERIC literature search, LGBTQ and Career Development, we highlight emerging research and best practices to support LGBTQ clients to build inclusive work environments.

Topics covered in the literature search include:

  • Career development for LGBTQ populations
  • Barriers to career progression of LGBTQ individuals
  • Best practice in career interventions for LGBTQ employees
  • LGBTQ resources to build student career success
  • Career interventions for transgender individuals
  • Research on workplace equity policies for LGBTQ individuals

There are now 57 literature searches available, including Career Development Theory and Career Management Models, Economic Benefits of Career Guidance, Parental Involvement in Career Development, Labour Market Trends, Mental Health Issues in the Workplace, and more.

Featuring comprehensive listings of key research and articles in career development, literature searches highlight critical points of current knowledge. As a student, academic or practitioner in the field, literature searches are helpful if you are researching the latest thinking or proven best practices. They are also valuable if you are considering a submission to CERIC for project partnership funding in order to gain an overview of major work already done in your area of interest.


Free webinar with authors of Strengthening Mental Health Through Effective Career Development

Career development is rarely part of mental health discussions, yet it can be a key pillar in the support and promotion of positive mental health. A free webinar – Your Impact on Mental Health: How Your Career Development Practice Promotes Client Mental Health – will be offered on Friday, April 3, 2020 to further explore the key learnings based on the recently launched CERIC book Strengthening Mental Health Through Effective Career Development: A Practitioner’s Guide. This webinar will be led by the co-authors of the book, Dave Redekopp and Michael Huston.

Client/student mental health predictably improves as a result of career development. In this one-hour webinar, the authors will summarize the broad ranging effects of career development and their associated mental health benefits. They will also review some of the mechanisms underlying career development’s role in mental health and describe how, by adjusting one’s intentions, these positive mental health outcomes can be achieved more effectively in your career development practice.

Redekopp is President of the Life-Role Development Group Ltd. and has been an avid champion of career development since 1988. He has received provincial and national awards in career development and is widely recognized in Canada as a thought leader in the field. Huston has been involved in the career development field as a counsellor, practitioner, trainer and counsellor educator since the early 1990s. He is a Registered Psychologist, Counsellor and Associate Professor at Mount Royal University in Calgary.

The book that the webinar is based on is available for purchase in print or for free download as a pdf at ceric.ca/cdmh. It launched in January at the Cannexus National Career Development Conference and has received endorsements for its ground-breaking perspective from global career development luminaries including Mark Savickas, David Blustein and H B Gelatt.

Learn more about this webinar and register today.


Cannexus20 explored career development in Canada through many different lenses

A record near 1,300 delegates from across the country and around the world gathered in Ottawa from Jan. 27-29, 2020 for the Cannexus National Career Development Conference to learn about and discuss the issues shaping work and well-being in Canada, including community social enterprise, youth empowerment, mental health, future skills and reconciliation.

Conference highlights included:

  • Three phenomenal keynote speakers: Social entrepreneur Zita Cobb shared her inspiring work to revive Fogo Island, NL with lessons for preserving small communities throughout rural Canada; UK researcher Tristram Hooley made a powerful case for why politicians should care about career development and set out the evidence for its social and economic impact; and Natan Obed, President of Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami, discussed improving the well-being of the 65,000 Inuit in Canada during a time of reconciliation.
  • Delegates received complimentary copies of Strengthening Mental Health Through Effective Career Development: A Practitioner’s Guide – written by Dave Redekopp and Michael Huston of Life-Role Development Group Ltd (and available for free download). Two other new CERIC publications were also launched: Career Work in Action based on the Guiding Principles of Career Development and the 2020 edition of Computing Careers & Disciplines: A Quick Guide for Prospective Students and Career Advisors.
  • Cannexus delegates got a look at the first results of the 2019 CERIC Survey of Career Service Professionals – a national survey that was completed by more than 1,350 career professionals across Canada last year. It includes a demographic snapshot, learning priorities and public perceptions of the career development field. A new section of the survey focusing on the regrets, anxieties and myths that career professionals are hearing about from students and clients generated considerable media interest.

This year’s Cannexus featured more than 150 education sessions, with some of the most-attended covering career development and mental health; enhancing economic activity through public, private & not-for profit collaboration; students’ perspectives on careers; identifying experiential learning outcomes; labour market trends in an age of disruption; preparing for the future of work; soft skills for employment retention; trauma-informed career practice; design thinking for career development; and the power of LinkedIn and social reciprocity.

Other programming included a Workforce Development Spotlight that examined newcomer integration, transforming workforce systems and students in a global workforce. The always-popular Spark! TED-style talks returned, a new World Cafe crowdsourced ideas around youth empowerment and the powerful KAIROS Blanket Exercise built understanding of Canada’s shared history among Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples.

The latest programs, products and services were also showcased by 45 exhibitors in a sold-out exhibit hall in addition to special Zones focused on raising awareness of organizations doing work in Mental Health, Social Enterprise and Reconciliation.

In a post-conference survey, a total of 95.9% of respondents rated Cannexus as good to excellent. The majority of delegates indicated that they plan to either use what they learned at work right away or incorporate it over time, with 95.6% stating they plan to share what they learned with their colleagues to impact change broadly. Comments included:

“Cannexus20 was very interesting, motivating and inspirational. The presenters are amazing and knowledgeable. All of the aspects of this conference are beneficial and educational. I strongly recommend it to everyone who is either in career development or career counselling.”
– Michèle Elliott, Indigenous Navigator, Indigenous Services Canada

“Cannexus offers a national conversation on what’s current – and what’s coming – for career development. It’s a dialogue you won’t find anywhere else. Thank you for building a conference that is an important part of professional growth for our team.”
– Kim Kiloh, Director, Centre for Student Involvement & Careers, University of British Columbia

“Cannexus20 was a great event packed with informative presentations and it allowed for meaningful connections with colleagues in the career development field. It was an energetic and engaging event. Looking forward to Cannexus21.”
– Karen Mulrooney, Program Co-ordinator, Job Connect NL

To learn more about Cannexus20:

Cannexus20 was presented by CERIC and supported by The Counselling Foundation of Canada with a broad network of 37 supporting organizations and sponsors.

The dates for the next Cannexus are Jan. 25-27, 2021 at the Shaw Centre in Ottawa. The Call for Presenters will open this spring.


CERIC survey results offer snapshot of the state of career development in Canada

If you’re a career professional in Canada, chances are you identify as female (a whopping 82.6% of you do), have a Bachelor’s degree, and are between 45 and 54 years of age. You are most interested in learning that helps you support adults in career transition, you need research related to mental health more than in the past and the biggest issue you anticipate affecting your practice is government funding. This snapshot of the field comes from the newly released results of the 2019 CERIC Survey of Career Service Professionals.

This latest CERIC Survey of Career Service Professionals is a national survey that was completed by 1,350 career professionals across Canada from November 1-29, 2019 – making it the largest response yet. The findings help CERIC, and the field at large, to better understand interests and challenges among career professionals, as well as priorities for professional development. This comprehensive survey is only done once every four years. It was previously run in 2011 and 2015 and provides rich data on the state of the career services community in Canada and how it has changed over time.

Education, salary and career progression

Survey results underscore the diversity of the career development field in Canada when it comes to educational background. For 21.4% of respondents, career development itself was the main focus of their highest level of applicable post-secondary studies, followed by 17.6% who had a background in education, and 12.2% who cited counselling, guidance or educational psychology. A total of 79.9% of career professionals hold a Bachelor’s degree while a further 35.3% have a Master’s.

Consistent in both 2019 and 2015, the top two services career professionals are engaged in are: career counselling and coaching, and employment advising and job coaching, followed by program planning/program delivery in this year’s survey. Career professionals reported that the top elements affecting their ability to effectively deliver their services are (respondents could check all that apply):

  • Heavy workload (49.4%)
  • Insufficient time to spend with clients/students (40.1%)
  • Inadequate financial resources (38.0%)
  • Limited support from institutional/organizational leadership (26.1%)
  • Limited access to appropriate resources (23.7%)

Levels of experience in the field are fairly evenly spread out with just under half of career professionals (47.6%) having 10 or fewer years of experience and just over half (50.4%) having more than 10 years of experience. Salaries reported among career professionals continue to be modest, though increase with experience. Those with 10 or fewer years’ experience report on average making $40,001-$55,000 a year; those with 11-20 years’ experience earn $55,001 to $70,000; and those with more than 20 years’ experience typically make up to $85,000.

Looking ahead to their own career progression, most career professionals see themselves remaining with their current employers. Over the next five years, one-third (33.5%) plan to stay in a similar role within the same organization, while 19.3% expect to move into a more senior role in the same organization, and 18.6% of career professionals anticipate a jump to a different employer. Just over 1 in 10 career professionals (11.6%) intend to be retired by 2025.

On the flip side, career professionals report multiple challenges with hiring for open roles in the field with the number one issue (20.9%) finding candidates with direct education or training in career development, followed by insufficient career development skills (18.5%) and limited experience in the field (15.1%). Specific comments included:

“There are not enough people with appropriate skills.”

“Most candidates have limited counselling skills for working with marginalized, multi-barriered clients.”

“Difficult to attract qualified and experienced people with the compensation package offered.”

Professional development and competency improvement

While those in the field value professional development, budgets provided by employers are limited. More than 1 in 4 career professionals (26.7%) indicate they do not have access to any professional development budget; 21.6% report that they receive less than $500 annually and 19.5% receive between $500 and $1,000. However, the overwhelming majority of career professionals (90.4%) would invest personally in their own professional development, with 52.0% willing to pay under $500 a year.

When it comes to formal learning approaches, career professionals show a preference for face-to-face interaction with half of survey respondents (50.7%) saying their top choice is to train through an in-person seminar or workshop. Rounding out their top three picks are online courses (37.0%) and conferences (36.1%). By contrast, in terms of informal learning, nearly two-thirds of career professionals (62.7%) turn to internet searches to keep up to date, with 48.5% watching video, and 45.8% reading online magazines and newsletters.

Asked which client groups they would prefer to focus their professional development on (and to check all that apply), the majority of career professionals in Canada are interested in strategies and tools that help them work with adult populations facing a variety of barriers:

  • Adults in career transition (57.6%)
  • People with mental health challenges (41.0%)
  • New Canadians/immigrants (39.8%)
  • People with low income (35.5%)
  • Unemployed (35.3%)
  • Post-secondary students (35.1%)

For more than half of career professionals surveyed, high or essential priority competencies to develop in the next year include: client relationship management (eg, case management, group facilitation and working with diverse groups) at 58.0%; personal/network development practices (eg, community-capacity building, stress management and leadership) at 55.3%; and career data competencies (labour market information, future of work) at 54.9%. The top three topics that career professionals would most like to see career development research focus on are: career counselling techniques, LMI such as employment trends – and mental health, which is up considerably from the No. 7 spot in the 2015 survey.

The future: Public perceptions and client concerns

With an eye to the future, career professionals anticipate the most significant changes in their practice over the next five years to be:

  1. Change in government priorities, processes or funding
  2. Impact of technology, AI or automation on jobs and job searching
  3. Labour market shifts, a changing job market and the rise of the gig economy
  4. Increased use of online services, tools, resources and social media
  5. Shifting demographics
  6. Working with more clients or students facing barriers

At the same time, career professionals believe gaps persist in the public perception of the value of career services in Canada compared with the reality:

  • Many respondents (43.3%) felt that the public either doesn’t know career services exist or do not understand the breadth and complexity of services: “I think that the public is mostly unaware of services that are provided by career service professionals.”
  • A smaller group of career professionals (17.7%) believe career services are viewed positively for their life-changing potential but that there is still some lack of clarity around how career services operate: “Invaluable resource, but (public) doesn’t know everything we can help with.”
  • A smaller number of respondents (10.7%) think the public would give mixed reviews to career services based on their range of personal experiences: “Some people perceive great value if they hit a wall and seek help, others don’t need us and therefore don’t see value.”
  • And, finally, a similar number (10.2%) think the predominant public perception is one that is misinformed about the nature of career services: “I think they perceive us as accessible only through college/university career centres for students or government low-income programs.”

For the first time, the CERIC Survey of Career Service Professionals also posed a series of questions related to the anxieties, regrets and myths that career professionals hear from their clients. Career professionals surveyed report that the students and adults they advise say they would go back and change their career choices if they could. Among their clients:

  • 71.7% say “I wish I had understood myself better and chosen a career that is aligned with my values”
  • 66.5% say “I wish I hadn’t been pressured into pursuing a career I didn’t want to pursue”
  • 61% say “I wish I hadn’t played it safe and let fear prevent me from taking a different career direction”
  • 58.8% say “I wished I hadn’t narrowed my options so soon and been able to explore other careers”

Career professionals indicated that Canadians want to balance their search for a career they are passionate about with economic realities. Their clients are evenly divided with 49.4% concerned about their ability to find decent-paying work and 45.3% anxious about making the “right” career decision. In Quebec, however, the number of clients seeking support with career decision-making jumps to 70.2%. Of note, only 3.2% of career professionals nationally report that their clients are fearful of AI/automation and what that means for their job prospects, which differs from would be expected given the level of public discussion around technology displacing workers.

Further exploration of survey results will continue this year with regional and sectoral analysis as well as comparisons with previous surveys.


The Winter issue of Careering highlights ethics and professionalism

This Winter 2020 issue of Careering magazine offers a crash course in many of the ethical dilemmas career professionals face today – what they are, the questions they raise and how to navigate them. Articles highlight the ethical codes available to career professionals, explore the implications of technology and look at ethics related to specific client populations, including newcomers, K-12 students and LGBTQ2+ jobseekers.

Articles in this issue:

…and much more, including:

And these online exclusives:

Careering magazine is Canada’s Magazine for Career Development Professionals and is the official publication of CERIC. It is published three times a year both in print and as an emagazine, including select content in French. Subscribe to receive your free copy. You can also access past issues for free online.

The next issue of Careering will be on the theme of “Rural Workforce Development” and will be a collaboration with the US-based National Career Development Association. Send your article pitches to Editor Lindsay Purchase, lindsay@ceric.ca, by Feb. 14.


Graduate students apply by March 31 to compete for GSEP Award

If you are a full-time graduate student whose academic focus is career development or a faculty member working with full-time grad students in career counselling or a related field, then you want to know about the CERIC Graduate Student Engagement Program (GSEP). Applications for 2020 are due by Tuesday, March 31.

CERIC encourages engagement of Canada’s full-time graduate students (Master or PhD level) whose academic research is in career development or a related field. Research areas such as Education, Sociology, Social Work, Counselling Psychology, Industrial/Organizational Psychology and Business with a focus on Human Resources or Organizational Behaviour are strongly encouraged to apply.

Through this program, graduate students will be introduced to CERIC and invited to:

Interested in getting involved? Complete and submit this quick GSEP application form. If you are also interested in competing for the GSEP Award, please submit a one-page article on a career development-related topic of your choice (including a 60-word bio) to Marilyn Van Norman, Director, Research Initiatives, at marilyn@ceric.ca by the same March 31 deadline. To support you in sharing this opportunity with students and colleagues, GSEP information can be found at ceric.ca/grad_program and this printable GSEP handout.


Strengthening Mental Health Through Effective Career Development: Guide launches today

In the wake of a global mental health movement, career development practitioners now have a new resource to help them understand how career development interventions support positive mental health. Strengthening Mental Health Through Effective Career Development: A Practitioner’s Guidewritten by Dave Redekopp and Michael Huston of Life-Role Development Group Ltd. and published by CERIClaunches today at the Cannexus20 National Career Development Conference and is available for free download.

The guide enables practitioners to connect career development services with clients’ mental health concerns while working ethically and inside the boundaries of their role and competence. The authors emphasize their focus is mental health, not mental illness, and address this distinction in the book.

Practitioners will be equipped to:

  • Improve the mental health impact of their services
  • Evaluate the mental health impact of their services
  • Communicate the mental health impact of their services to relevant stakeholders, including policy-makers

Written primarily for career development practitioners, namely those who help clients or students, this resource is also of use to the supervisors and managers of career practitioners. Researchers and academics will find a robust and testable model of career development and mental health relationships.

Get Your Copy

  • Download the free epdf
  • Print now available $28.95 via Amazon or Chapters.Indigo or ebook coming soon $19.99 (Kindle or Kobo)
  • Purchase bulk copies (10 or more) at 30% off by contacting sales@ceric.ca
  • At the Cannexus conference in Ottawa, attendees will receive a complimentary print copy.

Advance praise for the book has been received from career development luminaries and mental health experts:

“…This book provides a compelling conceptual framework for integrating mental health and career interventions as well as very accessible strategies and tools. This book will quickly become a classic in the field!”
David L. Blustein, Professor, Counseling Psychology, Boston College

“This is one of the most promising and encouraging works to come into our field in a very long time. This work demystifies mental health and shows how every practitioner can be a powerful change agent through career development practices.”
Kris Magnusson, Professor, Faculty of Education, Simon Fraser University

“This guide is a rare and wonderful combination of thoroughly researched, evidence-based information on the inevitable interplay between career development and mental health, with down-to-earth questions, opportunities for reflection, and pragmatic implications for practitioners in the field. …I believe it should become required reading for new and seasoned practitioners.”
Denise Bissonnette, Career Development Author, Speaker, Trainer, Diversity World

Publishing of this book was made possible in part by the generous contributions of our Knowledge Champions: Ryerson University, Wilfrid Laurier University, Australian Centre for Career Education, Simon Fraser University.