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THE POTENTIAL ROLE OF TECHNOLOGY IN CAREERS

EDUCATION IN THE UK
Dr Sally-Anne Barnes1, Professor Jenny Bimrose2, Graham Attwell3
1 2
Institute for Employment Research, University of Warwick (UK)
3
Pontydysgu (Wales)
E-mails sally-anne.barnes@warwick.ac.uk, jenny.bimrose@warwick.ac.uk,
graham10@mac.com

Abstract
The current policy context in the UK emphasises the need to exploit the potential of new technologies
and integrate their use into all aspects of career guidance practice and education. This together with
the increased use of technology by young people is placing new demands on careers guidance
professionals and how careers education, information, advice and guidance (CEIAG) is delivered.
Implicit may well be the assumption that the introduction of technology will not only extend access to
services by clients and customers by increasing the flexibility of delivery methods, but that it will also
help reduce costs by lowering the demand for face-to-face support. However, the evidence base
relating to benefits accruing from effective internet-based guidance is currently lacking.
A small-scale, mixed-methods research study firstly explored the skills and competencies required by
careers professionals to deliver internet-based careers guidance and education, and secondly
investigated young peoples’ views on how they want technology to be used in the future to deliver
CEIAG. This paper will present an overview of this research, its findings and the current evidence
base. It will provide evidence on the issues that urgently need addressing to support professionals in
their delivery of CEIAG in the UK, the technological challenges and the role young people want
technology to play in the future.
Keywords: technology, careers education, internet-based guidance, labour market information (LMI).

1 INTRODUCTION
There is a commitment in the UK to focus attention on the need to exploit the untapped potential of
technology to enhance all aspects of educational service provision, including careers education,
information, advice and guidance (CEIAG). Over half of all learners over the age of 14 recently
reported that they learn through the internet, with 22% using distance learning (DCSF & BIS, 2009)[1].
The current policy context in the UK emphasises the need to exploit the potential of new technologies
and integrate their use into all aspects of career guidance practice and education. It may be well
assumed that its introduction will not only extend access to services for clients by increasing the
flexibility of delivery methods, but that it will also help reduce costs by lowering the demand for face-to-
face support. However, the evidence-base relating to benefits from effective internet-based guidance
is currently lacking.
Alongside the changing policy context, the increased use of technology by young people is placing
new demands on careers guidance professionals and how CEIAG is delivered. High quality, impartial
CEIAG is identified as having a vital role to play in assisting young people in making learning and work
decisions that position them for success in life, as well as providing the support necessary for them to
manage personal, social, health and financial issues.
A small-scale, mixed-methods research study was undertaken to: firstly, explore the skills and
competencies required by careers professionals to deliver internet-based careers guidance and
education; and secondly investigate young peoples’ views on how they want technology to be used in
the future to deliver CEIAG. The fieldwork involved 46 young people and 17 careers professionals
from the careers service, across six locations in England. Data were gathered using investigative
frameworks developed from, and grounded in, the research literature. Research findings from this
study suggest that increased use of internet-based services could be an effective method for
delivering online CEIAG services. However, the way young people are able, or not, to access and use
technology must shape any future extension of online services.
This paper will firstly provide the background to the study and the policy context in the UK. Defining
internet-based careers guidance is then presented as highlights the confusion in the terms used. This
is followed by a review of the current evidence on technology, careers education and guidance. The
final sections of the paper focus on the research study and its findings on the potential role of
technology in careers education and guidance services. This paper will conclude by discussing some
of the evidence and the issues that urgently need addressing to support professionals in their delivery
of services in the UK, the technological challenges and the role young people want technology to play
in the future. The findings presented in this paper are part of a broader study which investigated the
skills and competencies needed by practitioners to develop internet-based guidance (see Bimrose,
Barnes & Attwell, 2010)[2].

2 BACKGROUND TO THE STUDY AND THE POLICY CONTEXT IN THE UK


Various publications and policy documents have set out the UK government’s vision to be the best
place in the world for young people to grow up and participate in education (DCSF, 2007[3]; DCSF,
2009a[4]; Low & Kenyon, 2009[5]). CEIAG services have a fundamental role in realising this vision as
they have the potential to help young people with learning and work decisions that position them for
success in life. To deliver flexible services, technology is important as it provides: a direct source of
information without the need for intermediaries; speed and flexibility; and convenience and choice for
users (Skills Commission, 2008)[6]. Technology is seen as a way to expand and enhance careers
education and guidance services for both adults and young people as well as provide cost savings
(BIS, 2010[7]; DCMS & BERR, 2009[8]). Young people as recipients of these services are reported to
want to access and explore information online using web-based interactive technologies (DCSF,
2009b)[9]. This same document stated that services provided online needed to be attractive and
engaging to young people with end-user design as a key development principle.
Identifying the need to integrate the use of technology in the delivery of careers education and
guidance services is neither new, nor confined to the United Kingdom. For example, the OECD
discussed the need to harness technology to increase access and improve the efficiency of careers
guidance services internationally some years ago (OECD, 2004)[10]. However, what is new is a greater
requirement for services in England to design and develop cost effective and accessible careers
resource facilities and services (including online and telephone helplines), viewed by policymakers as
crucial for achieving increased youth participation, progression and attainment in education, training
and employment.
With over half of all learners (52%) over the age of 14 reporting that they learn through the internet,
with 22% using distance learning (DCSF & BIS, 2009)[11], there is a the need to exploit the potential
of technology to enhance all aspects of careers guidance and educational service provision. However,
a ‘digital divide’ along social class membership and the need to integrate technology more effectively
into learning process in schools pose considerable challenges not only for developers, but also
careers guidance and educational providers. To address these and other challenges, a government
review identified five high-level objectives for the effective integration of technology in education
(Becta, 2008)[12]. These are: technology-confident, effective providers; engaged and empowered
learners; confident system leadership and innovation; enabling infrastructure processes; and improved
personalised learning experiences (Becta, 2008, p.4)[13].
Current policy emphasises the importance of implementing and exploiting technology in the delivery of
careers education and guidance services. However, reliable evidence on the actual impact of
introducing internet-based services is currently lacking (Barnes & La Gro, 2009)[14].

3 DEFINING INTERNET-BASED CAREERS GUIDANCE


Defining internet-based careers guidance is complex. Some refer to it as the use of the internet in
careers guidance delivery (Barnes 2008[15]; Evangelista, 2003[16]), others as ‘e-guidance…a means
of giving more guidance to more people, more often, at a distance’ (Offer, 2004b, p.1)[17] and others
use ‘web-based guidance’ and ‘internet guidance’ interchangeably (Ariadne, 2004)[18]. More recent
research (Barnes, La Gro & Watts, 2010[19]; Watts and Offer, 2006[20]) have identified eight internet-
based tools for CEIAG, including: email; chat; newsgroup; website; SMS (text messaging); telephone;
software (i.e. CD-ROM and free-standing computer programs); and video-conferencing. This wide
range of internet-based tools defined as ‘internet-based guidance’, together with the skills and
competences required to use them, highlights the gap in our understanding of what comprises the
effective use of internet-based services in careers education and guidance practice.

4 CURRENT EVIDENCE ON TECHNOLOGY AND CEIAG


Over the past few decades, the use of technology in careers education and guidance has been well
documented (for examples see, Becta, 2001[21]; Closs & Miller, 1997[22]; Hunt, 2003[23]; NCET,
1994[24] & 1996[25]; Offer, 1998[26]). Technology will continued to influence how careers education
and guidance services are accessed and used (Palomba, 2009)[27]. There is also literature on:
implications for policy of internet-based practice (see Commission of the European Communities,
2008[28]; OECD, 2004[29]; Watts & Offer, 2006[30]); implications for careers guidance of internet-
based practice (e.g. Evangelista, 2003[31] & 2006[32]; Offer, Sampson & Watts, 2001[33]; Plant,
2002[34]); practical guides and checklists for using different methods of internet-based careers
guidance (e.g. Offer, 2002[35]; Madahar & Offer, 2004[36]; Offer, 2004a[37] & 2004b[38]; Sampson,
et al., 2003[39]; Sampson, 1997[40]); checklists for evaluating the quality of different internet sources
for careers guidance; and bibliographies focusing on different aspects of technology in careers
guidance.
Due to the speed at which technologies are developing, keeping up-to-date with those most
appropriate for careers education and guidance, as well as understanding their potential impact,
represents a challenge for service providers. Plus, the skills and competencies of both careers
guidance professionals and their managers to respond to the changing interface between internet-
based services and users’ behaviours are currently underdeveloped (Hughes and Gration, 2009)[41].
The potential impact on the careers education and guidance sector was highlighted by a recent
evaluation of careers guidance professional skills (see Cobbett, Dodd, Miller, and Shearer, 2009)[42].
From the evidence, it is apparent that training, skills development and support for careers
professionals is both essential and critical for those wishing to deliver fully integrated services with an
internet-based element. Equally important is the need for: high quality technical infrastructure and
support; commitment from all levels of management; and the systematic monitoring and evaluation of
service delivery (Bosley, Krechowiecka & Moon, 2005)[43]. The speed of technological developments
and the changes in internet-based methods to deliver CEIAG services means that there is great
potential for innovative services to be developed. The current uses of internet-based guidance are: as
a resource; as a medium for communication; and for developing materials (Barnes, La Gro & Watts,
2010, p.3)[44].
Findings from the research reported in this paper provide insights to some of the issues identified
above (for a full report on the study see Bimrose, Barnes & Attwell (2010)[45]). The study helped our
understanding of the ways in which internet-based services are currently integrated into practice, how
young people would like to have internet-based services integrated into delivery and also highlights
careers professionals skill gaps in the effective use of these services. The paper is only focusing on
the potential of technology in terms of the challenges and drawbacks career professionals and
managers face in integrating it into service delivery. Evidence from a further study will also be drawn
upon (Bimrose, Hughes and Barnes, 2011)[46].

5 RESEARCH STUDY – METHODOLOGY


A small-scale, mixed-methods empirical study was conducted to investigate the communication skills
and other technical competences needed to deliver careers education and guidance via internet-
based methods. The study explored the attitudes, perceptions and skills of a sample of 11 careers
professionals and six managers of CEIAG services, together with a sample of 46 young people. The
research questions for the study were:
• What skills and processes are required to manage and respond to the changing interface
between internet-based guidance and individual user attitudes and behaviours?
• What additional or specialist needs of careers professionals exist for the provision of careers
and guidance-related interventions to young people through internet-based methods?
• What organisational infrastructure is essential to support the effective deployment of skill sets
developed by careers professionals?
• How can careers professionals and their managers be supported at a distance in developing
the skills and competences required to manage and deliver effective online careers guidance-
related interventions?
A range of services was identified to ensure variety in terms of delivery contexts and geographical
locations. Six service organisations in England were visited, together with four schools. Purposive
sampling methodology was used to recruit young people from these locations with the help of the
careers professionals. Informed consent from all participants and organisations was key to the
research process. Working constraints of practitioners and school timetabling were taken into
consideration throughout.
Two investigative frameworks were developed to guide the data collection: one for use during the
focus groups with young people (this also included various proformas to provide participants with
structure and interest during the focus group discussions); and second, an investigative framework for
the collection of data from face-to-face interviews with careers professionals and managers. Both
frameworks were informed and underpinned by findings from the literature review.
Data were collected from 46 young people who were either identified by a lead in the school and/or the
careers professional, or volunteered. Focus group sizes ranged from 5 to 8 participants (plus a careers
professional) and lasted between 35 and 60 minutes. Of those participating in the focus groups, 21
were male (46%) and 25 were female (54%). They were aged 12-17 years old and were diverse in
terms of ethnic minority groups, socio-economic background and different ability levels.
Data were also collected from 11 career professionals and six managers working in CEIAG service
delivery. The manager from each participating service was interviewed and identified careers
professionals within their service to participate in the study. Interviews lasted between 30-75 minutes.
Three of those who were interviewed were male (18%) and 14 were female (82%). The majority had
extensive experience, had acquired a range of qualifications and had participated in a range of training
and development activities.
An analytic framework, derived from the literature review, was used to analyse the data. The project
team coded the data manually to identify emerging themes and validate findings from the literature.
Some of the findings are presented next.

6 FINDINGS ON THE POTENTIAL ROLE OF TECHNOLOGY IN CEIAG

6.1 Young people’s perceptions of technology and CEIAG


6.1.1 A framework for understanding young people’s engagement with technology
From recent research with young people, a fourfold typology emerged which identified the different
levels of engagement young people have with technology. The typology comprises:
• Digital pioneers – advanced and innovative users of the potential of technology;
• Creative producers – building websites, posting movies, photos and music to share;
• Everyday communicators – making their lives easier through texting and MSN; and
• Information gatherers – typically Google and Wikipedia addicts, for whom cutting and pasting
are a way of life (Green & Hannon, 2007, p.11)[47].
Young people use technology not just for communication and consuming information, but for creating
and sharing knowledge (see Lenhart & Madden, 2005)[48]. Internet-based services are becoming an
important part of many aspects of users’ lives cutting across socialising, study and work (Greenhill,
2008)[49]. These uses include: sustaining social interactions and a sense of community; supporting
the generation and communication of cultural/social capital; being a hub for the discussion and
generation of ideas; disseminating knowledge; sharing materials; providing entertainment; sustaining
and expanding a knowledge network (Attwell & Costa, 2009)[50].
6.1.2 Young people’s engagement with technology
The typology (detailed above) helped us understand how young people use and engage with
technology, and what needs to be considered when designing and implementing internet-based
services for young people. Of the 46 participants:
• Eighteen (39%) identified themselves as a mixture of information gatherers and everyday
communicators;
• Seven (15%) as a mixture of information gatherers, everyday communicators and creative
producers;
• Five (11%) as information gatherers and 5 (11%) as everyday communicators;
• Three (7%) believed that were a combination of all four;
• One individual identified themselves as a mixture of an everyday communicator and a creative
producer; and
• Seven individuals did not respond or where unsure.
An exploration of this typology with young people in the focus groups established how they interact
and use technology for a variety of purposes. The majority use technology to gather information and
communicate, with its use for creative or more adventurous purposes less common. Despite high
levels of technical competence and usage, the majority of young people expressed a preference for
face-to-face interaction and communication with careers professionals, with many valuing the face-to-
face interaction. Younger members of the groups had concerns about an unknown adult contacting
them by telephone, email, SMS or online. Some older participants felt that after initial face-to-face
contact, email, telephone calls or SMS were acceptable forms of communication.
6.1.3 Young people’s experiences of accessing CEIAG provision
The CEIAG services accessed and experienced by young people were explored. Whilst the young
people were aware of national online services, they also used a variety of methods independently to
find information on careers and jobs. As would be expected, there was a strong preference for using
the internet to search for careers information emerged.
Younger members of the focus groups were found to have experienced CEIAG services during group
sessions at schools, whereas older members had experienced one-to-one interviews with a careers
professional. Although the careers professionals could be contacted by email, telephone, SMS or
online, awareness was very low and experience of this form of communication was lower.
Professionals were mainly contacted about information on potential careers. The use of computer-
aided guidance programmes and online careers programmes, such as Kudos, Routes Ahead and Fast
Tomato, in CEIAG had been a positive experience for the majority of young people. Presentations
from people employed in different occupations were also highly acclaimed. A less positive response
was received on the quality and quantity of hard-copy careers materials found within their
schools/colleges and libraries. Many reported using the internet to find information, but few expressed
concerns about the reliability and validity of information they found. Online information accessed
included: salaries; working hours; and holidays. Interestingly, the need for information on
qualifications was not raised. The experiences of young people accessing CEIAG provision online led
to discussions about the potential role of technology and their preferences for future possible delivery.
6.1.4 Young people’s perceptions of the potential role of technology in CEIAG
Focus group participants were asked to consider the potential role of technology in the delivery and
provision of CEIAG services. There was some concern that face-to-face services would be lost if
online communication services were offered. Discussions were, therefore, based on the idea that the
internet could be used to extend existing provision and services. The following were discussed:
• Provision of online (multi-media) information – It was generally believed that there was
greater potential for careers information to be provided on the internet. Access to multi-media
information would address a number of issues highlighted, including the needs of young
people requiring literacy support and who value information delivered in different formats.
Online information was regarded as ‘convenient’, but this needed to be followed up with face-
to-face communication, particularly when it came to applying for jobs and courses.
• Chat rooms – Young people liked the idea of being able to ask questions and get an instant
response offered by chat rooms. The idea of individual web-chats on a secure website with a
local adviser was popular. A few had concerns about how they would find out about times and
topics of chat rooms. Others were worried about security. Suggested topics included: finding
part-time work; university courses; and course specific chats (i.e. medicine and NHS work).
• Email – Young people were aware that the national CEIAG online service offered an email
service and that they could email their school careers professional, but some had experienced
non-responses and others were concerned about receiving emails from unknown sources.
However, the idea of an email newsletter from the careers services detailing events,
opportunities and resources in the local area was met enthusiastically.
• Facebook – Although many of the focus group members used Facebook, the majority
disapproved of the idea of CEIAG services or careers professionals using Facebook.
Facebook was seen as their space, and even if accessing a group was optional, it was seen
as an intrusion in their space. Many issues were discussed, but not resolved.
Findings suggest that integrating technology in the provision and delivery of CEIAG services has great
potential, but differentiated service provision based on age would need to be considered. For
instance, younger age groups are more concerned with gathering information about possible careers,
and how this might affect their choice of subjects at school. This information could be delivered online
and/or via email accounts. Older age groups are more likely to be concerned with the availability of
courses, work experience or jobs. This information could be accessed through mobile devices. It is
also important to note that mobile access to labour market information (LMI) may be more important
for those who do not intend to go on to higher education or those who are following a vocational
programme. In all cases, careers professionals would need to be able to access up-to-date
information and deliver it effectively and efficiently. Many older focus groups members believed there
was potential for more personalised internet careers materials to be delivered through the internet.

6.2 Careers professionals perceptions of technology and CEIAG


6.2.1 Current use of internet-based technologies in CEIAG delivery
The current use of internet-based technologies in service delivery for CEIAG is currently limited. Most
participants used the internet for researching information for their work role and to extend their own
knowledge (e.g. to search for data to be included in a power-point presentation or for a parents’
evening), but much was undertaken in direct response to client enquiries. Various websites were used
by careers professionals with young people as part of service delivery to support and encourage
young people to research particular courses or careers. Types of internet resources used included: CV
writing; KUDOS; Jobs4U; UCAS; Unistats; job and work experience vacancies; and Area Prospectus.
The use of technology as a medium for communication was low amongst this group. Email was used
to a limited extent with young people, though more heavily used to communicate with colleagues.
SMS was typically used to remind certain young people of an appointment or commitment. Where
these were used with young people, this depended on whether a relationship had already been
established. A chat room facility was available through one service researched, but little was known
about it. As the national online CEIAG service offered young people the option of making contact using
a range of technologies (phone, email, SMS, chat room, message board), the careers professionals
interviewed saw little point in developing these services as it would be a duplication. The use of
telephones was barely evident, except for specific tasks – like tracking people’s progress.
The use of the internet to develop resources was not identified by participants. Restrictions placed on
careers professionals by the technology available to them could have been a contributory factor. One
professional reported that the technology available in the workplace ruled out innovative use. The
hardware available to the careers professionals was variable, with some not having sound cards in
their computers. Compatibility also seemed to be an issue. Using technology in CEISG was,
therefore, seen as a high-risk strategy. Schools seemed to be more advanced using, for example,
Virtual Learning Environments (VLEs). Participants in this study recognised that their use of internet-
based technologies was currently very limited in their work.
6.2.2 Digital skill profiles of careers professionals
Little research exists on the existing skills and competencies required by careers professionals to
deliver effective internet-based guidance. As part of the research, participants were encouraged to
undertake a self-assessment of their digital skills profile. From these self-assessments, an overwhelming
majority scored themselves either as ‘high’ or ‘medium’ for most essential digital skills. It is only the
skills of web design and content creation for which a majority scored themselves as requiring most
support. This is encouraging, since it indicates that careers professionals are well positioned to
develop the confidence and additional skills to engage effectively with this area of practice.
6.2.3 Careers professional’s perceptions of the potential role of technology in CEIAG
When asked about the prospective use of technology in their work role, participants were circumspect.
Managers could see that there was an inevitability in increased levels of usage in delivering services,
partly because of the changing climate for this kind of provision. They could also see barriers to
implementation in terms of: the technology infrastructure available within their organisations;
constraints on resources likely to be available in the near future to upgrade; the capability of the
workforce, which required investment; and safety and privacy issues for young people. The
pressurised operational contexts in which they worked simply defined other, more pressing, priorities,
with a tendency to squeeze out any focus on this type of development.
Careers professional were similarly cautious. They were able to identify barriers to implementation
that were out of their control, like the technological infrastructure. Many identified time as a restrictive
factor in exploiting the internet more, as a resource, or for using it to develop materials. There was a
strong preference to exploit technology for communication purposes alongside face-to-face services,
as this was thought to be more beneficial to young people. The benefits for young people to be able to
interact with an impartial, expert professional were also expressed. This was considered as a reliable
way of providing the CEIAG sought. The types of internet resources identified that would motivate
careers professionals to engage more with technology, included: work experience opportunities;
podcasts; and standard online information.
Overall, the findings provide valuable insights into existing skills and competencies of careers
professionals and their managers to deliver internet-based CEIAG, together with the ways in which
they can be supported and developed. Current levels of engagement with technology in the delivery
of services to young people are mainly low. It was also evidenced that the careers professionals and
their managers did not believe that exploiting technology was urgent. However, the skills needed to
engage effectively and efficiently with technology seem to be well developed, with only specialist
technical skills under-developed.

7 CONCLUSION AND ISSUES ARISING


The study explored the potential use of technology in careers education and guidance provision
including: online (multi-media) information (which has a personalised element); chat rooms; email
communication; and Facebook. An analysis of the data has identified issues that need consideration if
the future potential of technology integration into CEIAG services is to be successful.
Skills for internet-based guidance – The assessment of the careers professionals’ digital skills
profile supports the case that the effective use of technology in service delivery will depend more on a
generic understanding. Skills and competencies form only part of the foundations of confidence and
adequate competence of technology use (Dixon, 2009)[51]. Training support is required to raise levels
of confidence and awareness of existing skills and competencies and how they can be used (digital
literacy), together with some training input on relevant practical skills, like web design or content
creation (BIS, 2009)[52]. Adequate training and support is crucial if CEIAG services are to be delivered
in a fully integrated service with an effective internet-based component.
Crucial role of management – Research findings also emphasise the crucial role of management,
providing system leadership, change management and innovation, and ensuring that the technical
infrastructure is fit-for-purpose and able to support high levels of sophisticated usage. Alongside this,
management need to ensure that a sound technical infrastructure is in place. This also has
implications for the funders of public services who regard internet-based guidance as a policy priority.
Perceptions of young people – Evidence suggests that internet-based guidance services need to be
differentiated according to the age of the young people. The majority use technology to gather
information and to communicate, which points to the need for well-developed online multi-media
resources, the provision of high quality online information and links to reputable sources.

7.1 The potential role of Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 in CEIAG provision
Young people identified a range of information that they would value and like to access online,
including:
• Better online access to job vacancies, together with text notification of training or employment
opportunities organised by region and type of job;
• Information on where to find, and how to access, work experience. This is an important
component of applications to college, university and jobs and also offered the best opportunity
to assess whether they a career in that occupation was worth pursuing;
• Online information that is short, easy to read and digest, but is also personalised; and
• ‘Talking heads’ or podcasts of people in particular jobs. However, many qualified this by
adding that they would rather have face-to-face meetings so there is the opportunity to ask
questions.
This starts to outline what information could be aggregated and personalised by technologists
developing online CEIAG systems exploiting Web 2.0 and Web 3.0.
At the heart of technology developments is Web 2.0 and it is these developments which will offer the
greatest potential for the way CEIAG services are accessed and delivered. Web 2.0 has changed the
way people interact and offers various functionalities, including the ability to aggregate user data, track
and filter content, collaborate, ‘mash-up’ data or construct a social network. The use of the internet as
a resource, especially for LMI is already common in a range careers services. Yet, the potential to use
technology to interrogate a wide range of sources, judge the efficacy of different sources, integrate
data from a range of sources and disseminate creatively in different forms for diverse audiences has
not been fully realised. Web 3.0 has the potential to realise change the way information is accessed,
personalised and used. The use of technology for communication with service users is emerging, with
emails and SMS playing only a marginal part in the interactions between careers professionals and
young people. Currently, developing materials (such as information sheets, handouts, presentations
etc.) using internet-based technology is the most underdeveloped, but offers the greatest opportunity
for the enhancement of materials and service provision. With technological developments and
advancements, there a range of potential opportunities to develop bespoke and personalised LMI
using a range of media for clients (Bimrose & Barnes, 2010)[53].
With a growing trend in openness and the rise in user-generated content with the use of these new
technologies, it needs to be remembered that audiences still value professional content producers
(see Greenhill, 2008)[54]. This is important when considering the introduction of internet-based
careers guidance services, but where professionals are accessed online, they need to demonstrate a
level of proficiency in technologies at least equal to those of the users accessing their expertise.
Overall, collaborative processes amongst practitioners (between locations and organisational
boundaries) can be supported by technology (Bimrose, Hughes & Barnes, 2011[55]; Bimrose &
Barnes, 2010)[56]). By exploiting technology careers professionals can combine and extend their
expertise and knowledge, and customise LMI for clients, but this has still to be explored and exploited.
Developmental work on an FP7 project (MATURE http://mature-ip.eu/) and other work with a
Connexions service in England are starting to explore possibilities using iterative, user-led design.
Innovative approaches are being developed and paving the way for new ways of delivering services.

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(2009a). Next Generation Learning: The implementation plan for 2009-2012.
[12] Becta. (2008). Harnessing Technology Review 2008: The role of technology and its impact on
education. Coventry: Becta.
[13] Ibid Becta. (2008).
[14] Barnes, A., & La Gro, N. (2009). Using ICT: a step change in career guidance or a sop to the
twittering classes? In H. Reid (Ed.), Constructing the Future V: Career Guidance for Changing
Contexts (pp. 70-78). Stourbridge: ICG Publications.
[15] Barnes, A. (2008). Workforce development and the use of ICT in Delivering Career Guidance in
the UK. Cambridge: NICEC.
[16] Evangelista, L. (2003). How is the internet changing careers guidance? First results of a survey
amongst European Careers Advisers. Retrieved from
http://www.guidanceforum.net/pages/res_general/surveyresults.pdf.
[17] Offer, M. (2004a). Giving guidance by email: Advisers' checklist. Manchester: Graduate Prospects
& HECSU.
[18] Ariadne. (2004). Guidelines for web-based guidance. Bucharest: Afir Publishing.
[19] Barnes, A., La Gro, N., & Watts, A. G. (2010). Developing e-guidance competences: the
outcomes of a two-year European project to transform the professional development of career
guidance practitioner. Cambridge: Career Research and Development.
[20] Watts, A. G., & Offer, M. (2006). IAG Review: The current and potential role of ICT in delivering
Information, Advice and Guidance. Derby: Centre for Guidance Studies, University of Derby.
[21] Becta. (2001). Connecting Careers and ICT. Coventry: Connexions Service National Unit.
[22] Closs, S. J., & Miller, I. M. (1997). IT in Guidance: Careers Guidance at a Distance. An evaluation
of desktop video conferencing technology. Sudbury: Department for Education and Employment.
[23] Hunt, M. (2003). ICT and the E word - E learning, E guidance, E what? Retrieved from
http://www.cegnet.co.uk/resource/content/files/458.doc.
[24] National Council for Educational Technology (Ed.). (1994). The Future Use of Information
Technology in Guidance. Coventry: National Council for Educational Technology.
[25] National Council for Educational Technology. (1996). Getting Started: Using IT in Careers
Education and Guidance. Coventry: National Council for Educational Technology.
[26] Offer, M. S. (1998). Information Technology in Careers Education and Guidance. An historical
perspective, 1970-1997. In M. Crawford, R. Edwards & L. Kydd (Eds.), Taking Issue. Debates on
Guidance and Counselling in Learning (pp. 139-152). London: Routledge.
[27] Palomba, E. (2009). ICT for Counseling and Careers Guidance Services. In A. Méndez-Vilas, A.
Solano Martín, J.A. Mesa González & J. Mesa González (Eds.), Research, reflections and
Innovations in Integrating ICT in Education (pp.70-73). Badajoz, Spain: FORMATEX.
[28] Commission of the European Communities. (2008). The Use of ICT to Support Innovation and
Lifelong Learning for All – A Report on Progress. Brussels: Commission of the European
Communities.
[29] ibid. OECD (2004).
[30] Watts, A. G., & Offer, M. (2006). IAG Review: The current and potential role of ICT in delivering
Information, Advice and Guidance. Derby: Centre for Guidance Studies, University of Derby.
[31] ibid. Evangelista (2003).
[32] Evangelista, L. (2006). A final statement of the much debated issue if in depth guidance can be
delivered using the internet. Retrieved from http://www.orientamento.it/english/statement.htm.
[33] Offer, M., Sampson Jr., J. P., & Watts, A. (2001). Careers Services: Technology and the Future.
Manchester: HECSU.
[34] Plant, P. (2002). IT in careers guidance: constructs and learning. Computer assisted careers
guidance: Some European perspectives.
[35] Offer, M. (2002). Getting started with the internet in adult guidance. Cambridge: NICEC.
[36] Madahar, L., & Offer, M. (2004). Managing e-guidance interventions within HE careers services: a
new approach to providing guidance at a distance. Manchester: HECSU..
[37] ibid. Offer (2004a).
[38] Offer, M. (2004b). What is e-guidance? Using information and communications technology
effectively in guidance services. Manchester: Graduate Prospects & HECSU.
[39] Sampson, J. P., Jnr., Carr, D. L., Panke, J., Arkin, S., Minvielle, M., & Vernick, S. H. (2003).
Design Strategies for Need-Based Internet Web Sites in Counseling and Career Services
(Technical Report 28). Florida: Florida State University.
[40] Sampson, J. P., Jnr. (1997). Helping clients get the most from computer-aided guidance systems.
Paper presented at the Australian Association of Career Counselors 7th National/International
Conference, Brisbane, Australia.
[41] Hughes, D., & Gration, G. (2009). Literature review of research on the impact offers and
guidance-related interventions. (PMS4858a 07/09). Reading, Berkshire: CfBT Education Trust.
[42] Cobbett, D., Dodd, F., Miller, S., & Shearer, L. (2009). Skills Needs and Training Supply for
Career Guidance - A Gap Analysis. Newcastle-upon-Tyne: LLUK & UKCES.
[43] Bosley, C., Krechowiecka, I., & Moon, S. (2005). Review of literature on the use of information
communication technology in the context of careers education and guidance. Derby: Centre for
Guidance Studies, University of Derby.
[44] Barnes, A., La Gro, N., & Watts, A. G. (2010). Developing e-guidance competences: the
outcomes of a two-year European project to transform the professional development of career
guidance practitioner. Cambridge: Career Research and Development.
[45] ibid. Bimorse, Barnes & Attwell (2010).
[46] Bimrose, J., Hughes, D., & Barnes, S-A. (2011). Integrating new technologies into careers
practice: Extending the knowledge base. London: UK Commission for Employment and Skills.
Retrieved from http://www.ukces.org.uk/integrating-new-technologies-into-careers-practice/5235.
[47] Green, H., & Hannon, C. (2007). Their space: Education for a digital generation. London: Demos.
[48] Lenhart, A., & Madden, M. (2005). Teen Content Creators and Consumers. Washington DC: Pew
Internet and Amercian Life Project.
[49] Greenhill, B. (2008). The digital landscape and new education providers. London:
DCSF/Futurelab.
[50] Attwell, G., & Costa, C. (2009). Integrating personal learning and working environments. London:
DCSF/Futurelab.
[51] Dixon, M. (2009). Information and communication technology, work and employment Beyond
Current Horizons: Technology, Children, Schools and Families. London: DCSF/Futurelab.
[52] Department for Business Innovation and Skills. (2009). Independent review of ICT user skills.
Norwich: HMSO.
[53] Bimrose, J., & Barnes, S-A. (2010). Labour market information (LMI), information communication
technologies (ICT) and information, advice and guidance (IAG). Wath-upon-Dearne, South
Yorkshire: UKCES. Retrieved from http://www.ukces.org.uk/upload/pdf/424721%20LMI
%20report_2.pdf.
[54] ibid. Greenhill (2008).
[55] Ibid. Bimrose, Hughes & Barnes (2011).
[56] ibid. Bimrose & Barnes (2010).