Title

Exploring processes of career guidance and counseling practices in a private education network in Karachi, Pakistan

Date of Award

8-1-2008

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Master of Education (M. Ed.)

Department

Institute for Educational Development, Karachi

Abstract

Career Guidance and Counseling (CGC) practices of one of the private Education Network in Karachi, Pakistan is being reported and analyzed in this study. Education Network where this study was conducted comprises separate schools for students of Early Childhood Education and Development, Primary, Secondary, Higher Secondary and Graduation level. The network also has a separate teachers' professional development center. CGC services in this Education Network have initiated initially with Higher Secondary School (HSS) Students, which has been studied in this study. However, the Education Network has plans to spread CGC services to the whole network. In this regard, a complete plan of CGC services for Secondary School (SS) students has also developed by the Education Network. This plan is also presented in this report. CGC support that the Higher Secondary School (HSS) students are having in this particular network has many forms .The students are not only provided with occupational information through career seminars and publications but are also involved in the process of gaining practical exposure of different professions through internships and field visits. Moreover students' financial need in pursuit of higher education is being addressed through scholarships. In this study report, a detailed account of strategies through which network is able to provide CGC support to Higher Secondary (HSS) School students has been presented. The benefits of CGC services to students towards their career development, and challenging and supportive factors towards implementation of CGC services in the Education Network has also been highlighted in this study. Qualitative case study method was employed in conducting this study. The phenomenon was studied in depth, using multiple sources of data generation tools, like semi-structured interviews, observations and documents analysis. Findings of the study identified challenges students are facing in making career-related decision like National education system, family/community traditions, lack of occupational information, and lack of parental support are found to be some of the major challenges. These challenges are very much contextual in nature. The Education Network services found to be helpful in addressing needs of the students contextually, which is one of the key findings of the study. The reason for services art of most of the school systems in many of the developing countries, including Pakistan, is due to their costly nature. CGC services are expensive with regard to time, money and resources. Lack of human resources in the field is also a hindrance. However the Education Network is able to address cost effective issue of CGC services by involving community, which is another key finding of the study. Strategic leadership within the Education Network emerged as a key factor enabling CGC services in a school setting in a developing country like Pakistan.

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