Standards for Career Ready Practice describe the fundamental knowledge and skills that a career ready student needs in order to prepare for transition to post secondary education, career training, or the workforce. These standards are not exclusive to a career pathway, a CTE program of study, a particular discipline, or level of education. Standards for Career Ready Practice are taught and reinforced in all career exploration and preparation programs with increasingly higher levels of complexity and expectation as a student advances through a program of study. Standards for Career Ready Practice are a valuable resource to CTE and academic teachers designing curricula and lessons in order to teach and reinforce the career-ready aims of the CTE Model Curriculum Standards and the Common Core State Standards.
1. Apply appropriate technical skills and academic knowledge.
Career-ready individuals readily access and use the knowledge and skills acquired through experience and education. They make connections between abstract concepts with real-world applications and recognize the value of academic preparation for solving problems, communicating with others, calculating measures, and other work-related practices.
2. Communicate clearly, effectively, and with reason.
Career-ready individuals communicate thoughts, ideas, and action plans with clarity, using written, verbal, electronic, and/or visual methods. They are skilled at interacting with others, are active listeners who speak clearly and with purpose, and are comfortable with the terminology common to the workplace environment. Career-ready individuals consider the audience for their communication and prepare accordingly to ensure the desired outcome.
3. Develop an education and career plan aligned with personal goals.
Career-ready individuals take personal ownership of their own educational and career goals and manage their individual plan to attain these goals. They recognize the value of each step in the educational and experiential process and understand that nearly all career paths require ongoing education and experience to adapt to practices, procedures, and expectations of an ever-changing work environment. They seek counselors, mentors, and other experts to assist in the planning and execution of education and career plans.
4. Apply technology to enhance productivity.
Career-ready individuals find and maximize the productive value of existing and new technology to accomplish workplace tasks and solve workplace problems. They are flexible and adaptive in acquiring and using new technology. They understand the inherent risks—personal and organizational—of technology applications, and they take actions to prevent or mitigate these risks. vi Information and Communication Technologies | ICT.
5. Utilize critical thinking to make sense of problems and persevere in solving them.
Career-ready individuals recognize problems in the workplace, understand the nature of the problems, and devise effective plans to solve the problems. They thoughtfully investigate the root cause of a problem prior to introducing solutions. They carefully consider options to solve the problem and, once agreed upon, follow through to ensure the problem is resolved.
6. Practice personal health and understand financial literacy.
Career-ready individuals understand the relationship between personal health and workplace performance. They contribute to their personal well-being through a healthy diet, regular exercise, and mental health activities. Career-ready individuals also understand that financial literacy leads to a secure future that enables career success.
7. Act as a responsible citizen in the workplace and the community.
Career-ready individuals understand the obligations and responsibilities of being a member of a community and demonstrate this understanding every day through their interactions with others. They are aware of the impacts of their decisions on others and the environment around them and think about the short-term and long-term consequences of their actions. They are reliable and consistent in going beyond minimum expectations and in participating in activities that serve the greater good.
8. Model integrity, ethical leadership, and effective management.
Career-ready individuals consistently act in ways that align with personal and community-held ideals and principles. They employ ethical behaviors and actions that positively influence others. They have a clear understanding of integrity and act on this understanding in every decision. They use a variety of means to positively impact the direction and actions of a team or organization, and they recognize the short-term and long-term effects that management’s actions and attitudes can have on productivity, morale, and organizational culture.
9. Work productively in teams while integrating cultural and global competence.
Career-ready individuals positively contribute to every team as both team leaders and team members. They apply an awareness of cultural differences to avoid barriers to productive and positive interaction. They interact effectively and sensitively with all members of the team and find ways to increase the engagement and contribution of other members.
10. Demonstrate creativity and innovation.
Career-ready individuals recommend ideas that solve problems in new and different ways and contribute to the improvement of the organization. They consider unconventional ideas and suggestions by others as solutions to issues, tasks, or problems. They discern which ideas and suggestions may have the greatest value. They seek new methods, practices, and ideas from a variety of sources and apply those ideas to their own workplace practices. vii ICT | California Career Technical Education Model Curriculum Standards
11. Employ valid and reliable research strategies.
Career-ready individuals employ research practices to plan and carry out investigations, create solutions, and keep abreast of the most current findings related to workplace environments and practices. They use a reliable research process to search for new information and confirm the validity of sources when considering the use and adoption of external information or practices.
12. Understand the environmental, social, and economic impacts of decisions.
Career-ready individuals understand the interrelated nature of their actions and regularly make decisions that positively impact other people, organizations, the workplace, and the environment. They are aware of and utilize new technologies, understandings, procedures, and materials and adhere to regulations affecting the nature of their work. They are cognizant of impacts on the social condition, environment, workplace, and profitability of the organization. Note: As stated previously, California’s Standards for Career Ready Practice are based on the CCTC Career Ready Practices posted at https://careertech.org/ (accessed June 8, 2016).