Career Technical Education (CTE) Hub
Career Technical Education provides courses that integrate technical training and academics to help students develop the knowledge and skills needed for transitioning to career training, post-secondary education and the workforce. This educational philosophy balances academics with real-world problem solving and relevance in 15 high-employing industry sectors.
A program of study that involves a multiyear sequence of courses that integrates core academic knowledge with technical and occupational knowledge to provide students with a pathway to post-secondary education and careers. Career Technical Education is a critical piece to the Linked Learning Approach and is guided by the 12 Elements of a High Quality CTE Program.
It is very important to do research on your selected careers and majors to understand various components of the occupation before making a decision on your career path. Doing career research assists you in understanding your career path in all facets. It assists you in understanding the educational preparation and courses, the industry, the tasks and working environments, the projected growth, and annual income.
Several best practices for educators in K-12 Career and Technical Education (CTE) can enhance the learning experience and better prepare students for future careers. Here are some examples:
- Work-Based Learning (WBL): An educational strategy that involves students engaging in real-world work experiences as a part of their learning process. It's designed to bridge the gap between classroom learning and practical application in professional settings. Work-Based Learning programs aim to provide students with valuable skills, insights, and experiences that prepare them for future careers or higher education.
- Industry Partnerships: Forge strong partnerships with local businesses, industries, and professionals to provide students with work-based learning opportunities, internships, and mentorship programs.
- Integrate Academic and Technical Instruction: Blend academic subjects with technical skills, making learning more relevant and meaningful for students. Show the practical applications of subjects like math and science in real-world scenarios.
- Use of Technology: Incorporate modern technology and tools relevant to the industry being studied. This prepares students for the digital workplace and provides them with skills in demand.
- Career Exploration: Offer career exploration programs and resources that help students explore various career paths, enabling them to make informed decisions about their future.
- Soft Skills Development: Integrate soft skills training into the curriculum, including communication, teamwork, time management, and problem-solving. These skills are essential for success in any profession.
- Personalized Learning: Recognize and accommodate diverse learning styles and needs of students to ensure they can progress at their own pace and have a more personalized learning experience.
- Industry-Recognized Certifications: Provide opportunities for students to earn industry-recognized certifications, which enhance their employability and demonstrate proficiency in specific skills.
- Professional Development: Encourage ongoing professional development for CTE educators to stay updated on industry trends, teaching methodologies, and technology advancements.
- Career Pathway Planning: Develop clear and well-defined career pathways that allow students to understand the progression from high school to college and/or the workforce in their chosen field.
- Inclusive and Equitable Education: Ensure that CTE programs are accessible to all students, regardless of gender, race, or socioeconomic background. Promote diversity and inclusivity in career choices.
- Monitoring and Evaluation: Regularly assess the effectiveness of CTE programs through feedback from students, parents, and industry partners. Use data to make informed decisions for program improvement.
- Support Services: Offer counseling and support services that guide students through their CTE journey, including academic advising, career counseling, and financial aid information.
- Participation in CTSOs: Encourage student involvement in Career and Technical Student Organizations (CTSOs) that provide leadership development, competition, and networking opportunities.
Here are some resources and strategies that can aid in college and career exploration for CTE students:
Career Assessments and Interest Inventories:
- CareerOneStop: Offers free online career assessment tools to help students identify careers that align with their interests and skills.
- LA Career Finder: An assessment tool to help students explore career pathways.
- O*NET Interest Profiler: A tool that helps individuals explore career options based on their interests.
College and Career Fairs:
- Participate in local or virtual college and career fairs to connect with representatives from various colleges, universities, and industries.
Professional Guest Speakers:
- Invite professionals from different industries to speak to students about their career journeys, providing insights into different career paths.
Job Shadowing and Internships:
- Arrange opportunities for students to shadow professionals or participate in internships to gain hands-on experience in their desired fields.
- Organize visits to local businesses and industries to give students a firsthand look at the work environment and career opportunities.
Online Resources and Websites:
- Big Future by College Board: Offers tools and information for college and career planning.
- My Next Move: Provides information on careers, required skills, and potential salaries.
- Bureau of Labor Statistics: Offers detailed occupational outlook information and data on various careers.
College Exploration Tools:
- Naviance: A platform used by many schools to help students explore colleges, careers, and scholarships.
- College Scorecard: Provides data on colleges' costs, graduation rates, and more to help students make informed decisions.
Career and Technical Student Organizations (CTSOs):
- Many CTSOs offer resources and opportunities for students to explore career pathways and gain leadership skills.
Guidance Counselors and Advisors:
- School counselors can provide personalized guidance and information on college and career options.
Dual Enrollment Programs:
- These programs allow high school students to take college-level courses, giving them a taste of college academics. Dual enrollment — when a high school student is enrolled in both high school and college at the same time.
- Dual enrollment overview
Financial Aid and Scholarships:
- Educate students about financial aid options and scholarships available to help support their college journey.
Job Market Trends:
- Discuss current job market trends and the skills that are in demand to help students make informed decisions about their career paths.
Mock Interviews and Resume Workshops:
- Teach students valuable skills for job interviews and resume writing, preparing them for the job application process.
Alumni and Networking Events:
- Connect students with alumni who have pursued various career paths, providing valuable insights and networking opportunities.
ACTE: Association for Career and Technical Education
LACOE: Los Angeles County Office of Education
NAHP: National Association for Health Professionals
ITEEA: Technology Education Association
NBEA: National Business Education Association
CAROCP: California Association of Regional Occupational Centers and Programs