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Enterprising

Enterprising people like situations that involve using resources for personal or corporate economic gain. Such people may have an opportunistic frame of mind, and are drawn to commerce, trade and making deals. Some pursue sales and marketing occupations. Many will eventually end up owning their own business, or in management roles in larger organisations. They tend to be very goal-oriented and work best when focused on a target. Some have an entrepreneurial inclination.

Salary Range
€31k - €56k
Career Zone

In Brief...

Guides and advises young people as they make their career choices.

Knowledge

  • Therapy and Counseling Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.
  • Psychology Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Education and Training Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • English Language Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Clerical Knowledge of administrative and clerical procedures and systems such as word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office procedures and terminology.

Skills

  • Active Listening Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Social Perceptiveness Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Speaking Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Reading Comprehension Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
  • Service Orientation Actively looking for ways to help people.

In Summary - Guidance Counsellor - Post Primary

Career Sectors

Guidance Counsellor - Post Primarys typically work in the following Career Sectors:

Post Primary Education
Education & Teaching
Psychology and Counseling
Psychology & Social Care
Social Work
Psychology & Social Care

Videos & Interviews

Brian Howard, Guidance Counsellor

Brian Howard works as a Guidance Counsellor in Newbridge College in Kildare. He attended secondary school in Patrician Secondary School Newbridge. Following his Leaving Certificate he went on to do a B.Sc in NUI Maynooth. After completing his H-Dip he spent 5 years teaching Maths and Science before embarking on the Higher Diploma in School Guidance and Counselling in NUI Maynooth.

Videos on the Web

Further Information

The Work - Guidance Counsellor - Post Primary

The work of the Guidance Counsellor takes place with groups and also on a one-to-one basis. It consists largely of the following functions:

    • Counselling: helping pupils with coping skills for the ever changing circumstances in their personal, educational, and career development; decision-making, problem-solving, behavioural change
    • Personal and social development
    • Career information management to acquire, store and disseminate useful careers and courses information
    • Assessment: using psychological and educational standardised measurements
    • Vocational preparation: job search skills, work experience
    • Consultation with parents, staff and community
    • Referrals: when necessary, students are referred to qualified professionals outside school
  • Evaluation of school's guidance needs and services

Most commonly reported Work Tasks

  • Counsel individuals to help them understand and overcome personal, social, or behavioral problems affecting their educational or vocational situations.
  • Provide crisis intervention to students when difficult situations occur at schools.
  • Confer with parents or guardians, teachers, administrators, and other professionals to discuss children's progress, resolve behavioral, academic, and other problems, and to determine priorities for students and their resource needs.
  • Maintain accurate and complete student records as required by laws, district policies, and administrative regulations.
  • Prepare students for later educational experiences by encouraging them to explore learning opportunities and to persevere with challenging tasks.
  • Evaluate students' or individuals' abilities, interests, and personality characteristics using tests, records, interviews, or professional sources.
  • Identify cases of domestic abuse or other family problems and encourage students or parents to seek additional assistance from mental health professionals.
  • Counsel students regarding educational issues, such as course and program selection, class scheduling and registration, school adjustment, truancy, study habits, and career planning.
  • Provide special services such as alcohol and drug prevention programs and classes that teach students to handle conflicts without resorting to violence.
  • Conduct follow-up interviews with counselees to determine if their needs have been met.

Most commonly reported Work Activities

  • Assisting and Caring for Others Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
  • Establishing and Maintaining Interpersonal Relationships Developing constructive and cooperative working relationships with others, and maintaining them over time.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • Getting Information Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Organizing, Planning, and Prioritizing Work Developing specific goals and plans to prioritize, organize, and accomplish your work.
  • Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.
  • Resolving Conflicts and Negotiating with Others Handling complaints, settling disputes, and resolving grievances and conflicts, or otherwise negotiating with others.
  • Thinking Creatively Developing, designing, or creating new applications, ideas, relationships, systems, or products, including artistic contributions.
  • Documenting/Recording Information Entering, transcribing, recording, storing, or maintaining information in written or electronic/magnetic form.

Interests - Guidance Counsellor - Post Primary

This occupation is typically suited for people with the following Career Interests:

Social

The Social person's interests focus on interacting with the people in their environment. In all cases, the Social person enjoys the personal contact with other people in preference to the impersonal dealings with things, data and ideas found in other groups.

Many will seek out positions where there is direct contact with the public in some advisory role, whether a receptionist or a counsellor. Social people are motivated by an interest in different types of people and like diversity in their work environments. Many are drawn towards careers in the caring professions and social welfare area, whilst others prefer teaching and other 'informing' roles.

Creative

Creative people are drawn to careers and activities that enable them to take responsibility for the design, layout or sensory impact of something (visual, auditory etc). They may be atrracted to the traditional artistic pursuits such as painting, sculpture, singing, or music. Or they may show more interest in design activities, such as architecture, animation, or craft areas, such as pottery and ceramics.

Creative people use their personal understanding of people and the world they live in to guide their work. Creative people like to work in unstructured workplaces, enjoy taking risks and prefer a minimum of routine.

Enterprising

Enterprising people like situations that involve using resources for personal or corporate economic gain. Such people may have an opportunistic frame of mind, and are drawn to commerce, trade and making deals. Some pursue sales and marketing occupations. Many will eventually end up owning their own business, or in management roles in larger organisations. They tend to be very goal-oriented and work best when focused on a target. Some have an entrepreneurial inclination.

Qualities

As a Guidance Counsellor, you must enjoy working with people, and helping them to make important decisions about their personal, education, training and employment options. The ability to put people at ease and give information clearly is important.  
 
Good communication skills are very important. You must be able to listen carefully, and ask the right questions to find out about the client's interests, skills and values. Knowledge of assessment techniques such as as psychometric tests tests and computer guidance software is useful.  
 
The ability to use information technology is important, whether for administrative tasks, searching the Internet for information or demonstrating guidance software.

Entry Requirements - Guidance Counsellor - Post Primary

All teachers, including second level Guidance Counsellors, must register with the Teaching Council. You must first be eligible for registration as a Second Level Teacher, and in addition, hold a recognised qualification in Guidance and Counselling.

The qualification in guidance and counselling is a postgraduate one. 
 
There are four courses available at differnt institutions around the country:

  • DCU 
  • TCD
  • NUI Maynooth
  • Limerick Unversity

Courses involve both study and practical experience. Subject areas covered in a guidance and counselling course include such areas as:  

    • Counselling theory and practice
    • Group theory and practice
    • Career development and behaviour
    • Principles and practice of psychological training
    • Sociology of education
    • Career information management
    • Casework/counselling practice

Employers place importance on the right personal qualities. Relevant life and work experience are also highly valued.

See: How to become a Guidance Counsellor - NCGE

Last Updated: October, 2014

Pay & Salary - Guidance Counsellor - Post Primary

Salary Range (thousands per year)* €31k - €56k

Data Source(s):
A.S.T.I.

Last Updated: March, 2017

* The lower figures typically reflect starting salaries. Higher salaries are awarded to those with greater experience and responsibility. Positions in Dublin sometimes command higher salaries.

Labour Market Updates - Guidance Counsellor - Post Primary

Useful Contacts - Guidance Counsellor - Post Primary

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