University and Career planning is an essential focus for IB students.
It helps students to:
• Focus and relate their IB studies to a longer term goal / university course.
• Increase their knowledge and understanding of the array of opportunities and careers on offer, hence widen their possibilities for life after school.
• Thinking about yourself and your ambitions by setting goals and targets and exploring degree pathways.
• Exploring career options and linking with your appropriate IB subject selections.
• Working out what type of career area or job you want to do
• Finding out how to get into this career area/job by checking entry requirements
• Creating a broad list of possible university destinations and courses that interest you.
At BSJ there is a Pastoral Team here to assist with all of the above. Careers guidance includes whole group presentations from Ms Duce and Mr McIvor, the use of Naviance Family Connection Careers Tab, and personal interviews to name but a few measures.
Students can reflect before they engage in these discussions by considering:
• Their skills, interests, talents and preferences – this is through the Personality Type survey that is undertaken in KS4 and the Careers Interest Profiler that was completed in Year 11.
• Career possibilities – refine your list from Multiple Intelligences Survey results undertaken previously in KS4.
• Job trends Research specific university Courses through their websites to find out what jobs their graduates do or professions they enter.
In Year 12, taking the Careers Clusters survey will present the top career cluster for students to explore further to perhaps find an actual career that matches their interests and skills. Once found, students are ready to set their University Degree Course plan. At BSJ students record and review their ideas through Naviance, Family Connection – Journal Entries or adding to their Colleges I am Thinking About.
Further Activities during Year 12
• A Higher Education information evening for students and parents is followed by parental workshops and PSHE activities preparing students for university applications.
• Write and re-draft at least once a Personal Statement / Common Application prompt or Supporting Statement for University applications.
• Research occupations. Find out more about the nature of the jobs that interest you, such as educational requirements, salary, working conditions, future outlook and career development.
• Select universities that offer a degree or program that best meets your career goal and financial needs – the College Match link will support you with this.
• Find out about financial aid to help support you in obtaining your career goal – use the Scholarships Match in the Family Connection.
• Develop interests and skills outside of the classroom which show the qualities required for the career path you have chosen. For example to become a teacher you need to show you have worked with, and are interested in the development of children. Work experience and your CAS portfolio are obvious examples to think about.
When students return for Year 13, they will actively engage in completing their final Personal Statements, reviewing and fine-tuning College essays and begin with the actual process of applying to their selected universities, which is a challenging task if the students do not have in place the preparation required from Year 12.
• Students need to reduce their Colleges I am Thinking About list to a refined Active Applications.
• All paperwork and teacher requests in support of their university applications are written and submitted predominantly through Naviance or UCAS, hence students need to be aware of the procedures for this and factor in the time-frame required to organise this paperwork.
• All documents are completed, as are all approved student applications by the internal deadlines set by BSJ.
• Students are responsible for ensuring that they adhere to the internal deadlines given and submitting all of their required paperwork, essays and recommendations in advance of these.
In summary – the careers overview, programme and advice for IB students in Year 12 and 13 are determined by an evaluation of:
• The grades gained from previous year’s study: IGCSE / GCSE results vs University minimum entry requirements.
• Necessity for future career flexibility.
• Ability – discuss with subject teachers and don’t underestimate the effect of hard work and committed effort.
• Interest in and enjoyment of the subject and ensuring that each student can be successful in their chosen future career.
BSJ will provide all official documents that universities require, like a Transcript, to aid the application. A Family Interview will take place to offer individual support and guidance for university applications and understand the timeline for student and school documents to be submitted.
A full list of the university destinations that BSJ students have attended can be found in the School Profile here on the school’s website. We are proud to have BSJ alumni at over 140 universities worldwide, which include Ivy League, Oxbridge, UK Russell Group, and the Australian Group of 8, along with some of the most prestigious universities in Asia, Europe and Canada.
Visit the University Guidance @ BSJ blog for more.