With a strategic focus on students being “Ready for Life and Work” it is important that the university has some shared definitions round the language to do with career development and graduate employability. Many terms are often used loosely or interchangeably but do have different meanings and focus.
Employability is not just about graduates securing a ‘job’, it includes “a set of achievements-skills, understanding and personal attributes that makes graduates more likely to gain employment and be successful in their chosen occupations, which benefits themselves, the workforce, the community and the economy” .
(Yorke, M (2004) ‘Employability in Higher Education: what it is – what it is not‘ Higher Education Academy/ESECT)
Work Ready is an RMIT Graduate attribute. RMIT’s set of generic graduate attributes represents the broad skills that RMIT University expects that graduates will have acquired and be able to demonstrate to an appropriate level whatever their program of study. Graduate attributes link to program learning outcomes.
Career is the sequence and variety of work roles (paid and unpaid), which one undertakes throughout a lifetime. More broadly, ‘career’ includes life roles, leisure activities, learning and work” (Australian Blueprint for Career Development, 2009).
Career development is the lifelong process of managing learning, work, leisure and transitions in order to move towards a personally determined and evolving future. It applies to people of all ages (Career Industry Council of Australia, 2006).
Career Development Learning
Career development learning can be conceived as learning about the content and process of career development or life/career management. The content of career development learning in essence represents learning about self and learning about the world of work. Process learning represents the development of the skills necessary to navigate a successful and satisfying life/career (McMahon, Patton, and Tatham, 2003).