Career Clusters. The Highlight Zone: Research @ Work.Report as inadecuate

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Career clusters are part of a response to changing work and a changing workplace, a way of broadening the focus of secondary career and technical education (CTE). The following are some of the changes in work and the workplace: the nature and structure of work; leadership styles and organizational structures; the knowledge and skills needed; values and commitment; and the importance of lifelong learning. Changes in CTE include a longer, broader-term conception of work, strengthened academics, strong secondary-postsecondary articulation, and entrance to long-term careers beyond entry-level jobs. Career clusters can help students build career pathways by providing a broader focus on preparation for the workplace. Teachers, instructional designers, career counselors, and administrators need to learn about career clusters and adapt and enlarge their roles to support the use of clusters with students. A working knowledge of career clusters includes their nomenclature, complexity, and ways they are organized. Although career cluster frameworks vary, they usually include lists of occupations as clustered in the framework, as well as local labor market trends and curriculum information for teachers. (This brief profiles the career cluster frameworks of Utah, Indiana, Oregon, Ohio, and the federal government.) (Contains 20 references.) (KC)

Descriptors: Academic Education, Career Choice, Career Development, Career Education, Career Information Systems, Curriculum Development, Education Work Relationship, Educational Change, Educational Needs, Employment Potential, Integrated Curriculum, Job Skills, Occupational Clusters, Occupational Information, Relevance (Education), Secondary Education, Technical Education, Vocational Education

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Author: Wonacott, Michael E.


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