Information overload comes to mind when trying to figure out what career path your child should choose.  And then there are thousands of 3rd level courses to choose from.  Choosing a viable career path (at this young age) can be overwhelming, not just for the students but parents too.  Here are some helpful tips from Resolve.

  • Have the right mindset – do not make this a do-or-die situation.  We all have clear examples of relatives/friends that study X in college only to go on to have a successful career in a totally different area.  We need to tone down the pressure on the student and help them get the most out of their college years. @Resolve we translate student’s interests into career themes and encourage students to fill out the full 10 Level 8 CAO courses with 150+ points difference from #1 to #10.
  • Focus on skills – there are jobs of the future that simply don’t exist today. So the degree choice should include skills that help the student (a) anticipate and cope with change, (b) learning how to learn, (c) developing critical thinking skills, (d) exposing a student to new ideas, and (e) discovering how to communicate and defend their thoughts. Yes, there are some jobs that need very specific training from day one, however, a lot of employers believe that most technical/hard skills are teachable. It’s much more important that new hires know themselves and know how to communicate, think critically, and problem solve (soft skills).
  • Bust the myths – “Social Science only means social worker” – FALSE!!.  Our own misconceptions about courses can cloud the views we pass on to our children.  University courses have evolved in line with changing local & global concerns of our time. Most universities have done a great job in explaining course content, post grad options and diverse career options available. @Resolve we can help you wade through this information.
  • Student myths – Students also tend to pick up bitesize information on a given course or career which can be misleading or limiting.  Best to sit down with your child and help them navigate through their interests and options.   Guide them to research different courses by looking at course content, attending Undergraduate Open Days and speaking to friends/relatives that have obtained that degree.    @Resolve can also help them put their understanding into context and support them through this maze.
  • Chasing the points – we are all not wired to sit exams in a variety of subjects and do well in all.  There are now many entry paths to a chosen career and not all of these are a straight line. We have coached many students into their chosen career by alternative routes.  CAO allows students to select courses at Level 6/7 also – make sure to fill these options out too.
  • Encourage them to take a leap outside their comfort zone – consider choosing a university that is outside your local area or the college their friends are going to.
  • Stay the course – If their 1st choice is high points, look for alternative entry pathways that, through completing a subsequent Masters, will get them qualified into the same space.  As an example, if your child has Physiotherapy as #1 (UCD – 601 (2022 points)) follow through and see what other courses (with lower points) meet Professional Masters in Physiotherapy entry requirements (note: requires a strong result and, places are typically limited).  Possible courses include BSc Health & Performance Science (UCD -543 (2022 points)) or BSc Sport Rehab & Athletics Therapy (Carlow IT – 451 (2022 points)).
  • Final say – Who’s career is it? Let your child have the final say in what career path and course they choose.


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