Careers Ireland

Careers Ireland – Overview of Career Guidance Provisions, Structures and Practitioners in Ireland


Careers Ireland – Career Guidance Ireland – A guidance and counselling service for second-level schools was formally established in Irish schools by the Department of Education in 1966 (Shiel & Lewis, 1993, p5). The Department of Education continues to hold the remit for providing career guidance in schools and for adults through the National Centre for Guidance in Education, which is also funded by the Department of Education. Career Guidance Counsellors (as opposed to Career Guidance Practitioners or Teachers) are employed directly by the Department of Education to provide counselling and career guidance to students in secondary level, and in some schools will double up as subject teachers. ‘Each second-level school must have 500 students or more to appoint a full-time guidance counsellor but this ratio was one for every 250 students up to the 1980s’ (Irish Examiner, Mar. 2011) therefore, the student/counsellor ratio of a second level school which has over 500 students is 500:1.


SOLAS (formally FÁS) also provides a career guidance Ireland service to the unemployed, and third-level learning institutions provide a career service to their graduates and students within universities and institutes of technology. All services described above are free to the client and under most circumstances, the guidance practitioners are highly qualified to Post Graduate Diploma University Level in Career Guidance and in some cases Career Guidance and Counselling. ‘Guidance counsellors (in secondary schools) are generally recruited from the ranks of serving second-level teachers and must have a minimum of three years teaching experience’ (Shiel & Lewis, 1993, p7).


Generally speaking, guidance practitioners in Irish schools, universities, institutes of technology, adult guidance public providers, Post Leaving Certificate Vocational Education Committees (VEC’s) and SOLAS are paid for by the Irish state.


It should also be noted that career guidance practitioners in Ireland have a remit for ‘counselling’ as well as career guidance services. Thus, their role as guidance practitioners is somewhat different to the role of guidance practitioners in Britain.


Extract from my dissertation.  If you would like information on references regarding career guidance Ireland, fell free to reach out to me.


Diarmuid Haughian

MA Career Guidance, QCG

Careers Ireland

Career Guidance in Ireland