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CTE/College and Career Awareness Curriculum College and Career Awareness
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Core Standards of the Course

Strand 1
Students will assess their interests and aptitudes and explore related career options based on current Career and Technical Education (CTE) Career Clusters and Pathways. (This strand will be incorporated throughout the course.)

Standard 1
Explore the relationship of individual interests, skills, and aptitudes for future academic and career goals.

  1. Complete an interest assessment to identify personal skill set (e.g. Keys to Success, YouScience)
    • Personal skill set is the combination of knowledge, personal qualities, and abilities developed through life experiences.
  2. Identify individual interests, skills, and aptitudes in career selection.
    • Interest is wanting to know or learn about something.
    • Skills are a learned ability to do well in something.
    • Aptitude is a natural ability to do something.
  3. Compare the relationship between education and training for future career options.
  4. Investigate how career choices relate to aspirations and future standard of living.
    • Aspiration is hope of achieving something.
    • Standard of living is the degree of wealth or material comfort available to an individual.

Standard 2
Explore and participate in the process of preparing to apply for an entry-level job in relation to future academic and career goals.

  1. Entry-level job is a job that can be performed with minimal education or experience.
  2. Career is a long-term job that requires advanced education or work experience that an individual builds towards over time.
  3. Evaluate career availability based on the career outlook information (,, etc.)
  4. Compare opportunities for traditional and nontraditional career choices.
    • Nontraditional careers are occupations for which individuals from one gender comprise less than 25% of the individuals employed in each such occupation (e.g. aviation, chefs, computer science, cosmetology, dental hygienist, engineering, welding, etc.)
  5. Explain the impact of a digital footprint in job-seeking.
    • Digital footprint is the information about a particular person that exists on the Internet as a result of online activity.
  6. Explore, participate, and explain job-seeking skills based on entry-level job requirements.
    • Evaluate a resume with effective elements.
      • Grammar/spelling error free
      • Appropriate contact information (name, email address, phone number)
      • Organized experience (job experience, community service, leadership, etc.)
      • Skills (workplace skills, computer skills, certifications, etc.)
    • Participate in a mock interview.
      • Mock interview is a practice interview that allows the interviewee to create effective responses, work on nonverbal communication skills, and become familiar with interview settings.
      • Research and prepare responses to common interview questions.
      • Prepare questions to ask the interviewer (e.g. position responsibilities, benefits, opportunities within company, company environment, etc.)
      • Research appropriate attire for mock interview.
      • Identify different interview settings (e.g. face-to-face, group, video conference, phone call, lunch/ dinner meeting, etc.)
  7. Explain the steps to take after an interview (e.g. write a thank you email, appropriate time to follow-up, etc.)
  8. Participate in a variety of Work-Based Learning experiences (e.g. guest speakers, field studies, job shadows, and career fairs.)
    • Identify potential career opportunities offered with each Work-Based Learning experience.
    • Identify future Work-Based Learning opportunities that align to individual career interests (e.g. high school level courses, postsecondary level course, internships, apprenticeships, etc.)

Standard 3
Explore the current Utah Career Clusters and Pathways using project-based learning and simulations and discuss academic content and skills required for specific career pathways.

  1. Career cluster is a group of careers and industries that are related by skills or products.
  2. Career pathway is a collection of corresponding courses that prepare students for a given career.
  3. Investigate current Utah Career Clusters offered through Career and Technical Education (CTE).
    • Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources
    • Architecture & Construction
    • Arts, Audio/Visual Technology & Communication
    • Business, Finance, & Marketing
    • Computer Science & Information Technology
    • Education Training
    • Engineering & Technology
    • Health Science
    • Hospitality & Tourism
    • Human Services
    • Law, Public Safety, Correction & Security
    • Manufacturing
    • Transportation, Distribution & Logistics
  4. Discuss academic content knowledge and skills related to career pathways.

Standard 4
Identify the courses outlined on a career pathway and compare the requirements for a CTE pathway concentrator and a CTE pathway completer and identify pathways available to students.

  1. Supporting courses are suggested courses to help students gain additional knowledge and skills within a pathway.
  2. Explorer courses are courses designed for Grade 9 and 10 to allow students to find out what they like and dislike.
  3. Concentrator courses are courses unique to a specific career pathway.
  4. CTE pathway concentrator is a student who has completed at least two courses, with at least one concentrator course, in a specific CTE pathway.
  5. CTE pathway completer is a student who has met all requirements of a CTE pathway by completing 3.0 credits with one course being a concentrator course.
  6. Identify career pathway(s) available at local high school(s).
  7. Identify supporting, concentrator, and completer courses for career pathway interests.

Standard 5
Define and identify postsecondary education and training opportunities through Utah technical colleges, community colleges, universities, and industries in addition to high school offerings through Career and Technical Education (CTE) courses.

  1. Identify postsecondary education opportunities.
    • Technical college is a college that offer certificate programs to meet business and industry needs for technically skilled workers.
    • Community college is primarily a two-year public institution that grants certificates, diplomas, and associate degrees.
    • University is an institution that offers both undergraduate and graduate degrees.
      • Undergraduate degree is a degree at the first level of postsecondary education (e.g. Associate, Bachelorís)
      • Graduate degree is an advanced academic degree in a specialized field of study (e.g. Masters, Doctorate)
  2. Identify industry education opportunities.
    • Apprenticeship is an industry-driving, high-quality career pathway where employers can develop and prepare their future workforce and individuals can obtain paid work experience, classroom instruction, and a portable, nationally recognized credential.
    • Internship is high-quality experience where students are mentored by an employer for approximately 40 hours on site during one course to learn about a particular industry or occupation.
    • Job shadow is a structured career activity in which students follows an industry professional for a short time period to learn about a particular occupation or industry.
  3. Identify the types of credentials earned at postsecondary and industry levels (e.g. certificate, license, Associate Degree, Bachelorís Degree, Masterís Degree, Doctorate Degree).
  4. Investigate postsecondary education and industry certification requirements for future career goals (e.g. apprenticeships, certifications, college degrees)

Strand 1 Performance Objectitives

  • Students will participate in at least one project-based learning opportunity to explore current Utah Career Clusters. (Project-based learning is where students learn by actively engaging in real-world and personally meaningful projects.)
  • Students will participate in at least one simulation opportunity to explore current Utah Career Clusters. (Simulation is a model that mimics the operation of an existing or proposed system, providing evidence for decision-making by being able to test different scenarios or process changes.)
  • Students will participate in at least two Work-Based Learning opportunities (guest speakers, job shadows, career fairs, field studies) and provide an artifact for each experience. Artifact examples could include an oral presentation, webpage, job shadow reflection, interview, podcast, etc. (Utilize your LEAís Work- Based Learning Coordinator, if applicable, to help facilitate Work-Based Learning opportunities within the College and Career Awareness course.)

Strand 2
Students will develop, practice, and demonstrate academic content and workplace skills within the current Utah Career Clusters. (This strand will be incorporated throughout the course.)

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Standard 1
Reflect how developing workplace skills impacts academic and career success.

  1. Identify the benefits of strong workplace skills.
  2. Explain the negative consequences of underdeveloped workplace skills.

Standard 2
Identify, develop, and demonstrate personal characteristics that promote responsibility, dependability, productivity, high-quality work, and self-initiative.

  1. Identify personal characteristics.
    • Responsibility is being dependable, making good choices, and being accountable for your actions.
    • Dependability is consistently being on time, producing high-quality work, completing tasks on time, and doing what is right when unsupervised.
    • Productivity is effectively using time, energy, and attention to achieve a goal.
    • High-quality work is work that meets deadline requirements, completion of expectations, and presents accurate information.
    • Self-initiative is the ability to be independent, resourceful, and work without always being told what to do.
  2. Develop personal characteristics.
    • Demonstrate regular and on-time attendance.
    • Meet deadlines and complete tasks on-time.
    • Exhibit self-motivation and self-discipline (i.e. can work and think independently).
    • Show respect for others (i.e. time, property, opinions, etc.)
    • Be responsible for own actions.
    • Demonstrate strong work ethic (i.e. grit, determination, dedication, perseverance, etc.)

Standard 3
Explore different methods of communication.

  1. Identify different methods of workplace communication.
    • Verbal (e.g. oral and written)
    • Nonverbal (e.g. body language, personal appearance, etc.)
    • Visual (e.g. charts, graphics, images, etc.)
    • Listening (e.g. active listening)
  2. Compare personal and professional communication.
  3. Evaluate the impact of technology on communication in the workplace.
    • Identify scenarios when different methods of communication would be used in the workplace (e.g. using video-conferencing instead of an in-person meeting for remote workers)
    • Compare how a technology method may be more effective depending on a situation (e.g. using a phone call to communicate over an email).
  4. Practice technical reading and writing (e.g. diagrams, blueprints, how-to instructions or videos, documentation, etc.)

Standard 4
Apply critical thinking and problem-solving techniques.

  1. Apply critical thinking to solve a problem.
    • Understand the problem.
      • Identify the problem.
      • Explain what you know and what you need to know to create a solution.
      • Develop a problem statement.
    • Research the problem.
      • Gather relevant and accurate information from multiple sources and search engines.
      • Collaborate to share information and ideas.
      • Critically analyze possible solutions (e.g. consider multiple points of view)
    • Resolve the problem.
      • Determine the best solution.
      • Present the solution for feedback.
    • Evaluate the solution.
      • Reflect on the process.
      • Identify improvements needed.
      • Summarize next steps.
  2. Compare different types of problem-solving techniques (engineering design process, decision matrix, pros and cons, Define, Measure, Analyze, Improve and Control (DMAIC), etc.)

Standard 5
Identify and demonstrate effective collaboration and teamwork skills.

  1. Participate in different roles within a team (e.g. leader, administrative assistant, researcher, supplier, etc.)
  2. Explain the benefits and drawbacks of working in a team.
  3. Demonstrate collaboration skills (e.g. brainstorming, listening, constructive feedback, etc.)

Strand 3
Students will define, identify, and explore pathway connections of a variety of Career and Technical Student Organizations (CTSOs) including the benefits of CTSO membership.

Standard 1
Students will identify the Utah approved CTSOs.

  1. Career and Technical Student Organization (CTSO) is a student leadership organization that provides opportunities for students to learn and practice leadership, develop academic and technical skills, and community involvement.
  2. Identify Utah approved CTSOs. (* indicates CTSO offers middle level events.)
    • DECA
    • Educators Rising*
    • FBLA*
    • FCCLA*
    • FFA*
    • HOSA*
    • SkillsUSA*
    • TSA*

Standard 2
Students will identify the benefits of CTSO membership for progression in a future career pathway.

  1. Identify which CTSO aligns to each Utah Career Pathway.
  2. Identify the benefits of participating in a CTSO.
    • Raises academic motivation and engagement
    • College opportunities and scholarships
    • Community service
    • Leadership and personal skill set development
    • Career networking and workplace skills
    • Resume enhancement
    • Travel

Strand 3 Performance Objectitives

  • Students will participate in at least one simulated CTSO competitive event.
  • Students will reflect on the process, experience, and future impacts of participating in a CTSO.

  1. SkillsUSA (Championships)
  2. TSA (Middle School Competitions)

Strand 4
Students will demonstrate stress management strategies, create a plan of study that leads to rigorous course taking patterns, and understand educational and financial opportunities and risks for future academic and career goals. (This strand would be appropriate for teacher/counselor collaboration.)

Standard 1
Students will identify a variety of positive stress management strategies.

  1. Stress is the physical, mental, or emotional response to life challenges, pressures, and changes.
  2. Stressors are things or events that cause an individual stress.
    • Identify triggers and personal pressure that increase individual stress (e.g. family and friends, media and technology, school and work, extracurricular activities, etc.)
  3. Stress management is using positive coping strategies to respond to physical and emotional stressors.
  4. Demonstrate stress management strategies in variety of situations (e.g. group work, individual projects, etc.)

Standard 2
Students will strengthen an individual Plan for College and Career Readiness (PCCR) connected to academic and career interests.

  1. Complete a career assessment to identify potential career options related to interest assessment results (e.g. Keys to Success, YouScience). Please refer to Strand 1 Standard 1.
  2. Create a rigorous program of study for middle/junior high school, high school, and one, two, or four-year postsecondary opportunities based on results from the individual career assessment.
    • Program of study is academic and career and technical content that prepares a student to make a successful transition to postsecondary and the workplace.
  3. Evaluate the relationship between the individual Plan for College and Career Readiness (PCCR) and personal skill set identified in the career assessment results.
    • Personal skill set as the combination of knowledge, personal qualities, and abilities developed through life experiences.
  4. Explore postsecondary admissions processes needed for future academic and career goals.
    • Identify requirements for admissions and scholarship applications (e.g. record of leadership roles, community service hours, extracurricular activities, academic achievements and awards).
    • Identify academic goals in relationship to Plan for College and Career Readiness (PCCR).

Standard 3
Students will explore various financial opportunities and risks associated with future academic and career goals.

  1. Savings is money an individual keeps to pay for things in the future.
  2. Debt is spending more money than an individual has.
  3. Tuition is the cost of postsecondary education.
  4. Financial aid is money to help pay for postsecondary education including scholarships, grants, student loans, and work study.
    • Scholarships are money awarded based on academic and other achievements.
    • Grants are money given that does not have to be paid back.
    • Student loans are money borrowed by the student that must be paid back.
    • Work study is a way for students to earn money to pay for school by working part-time jobs.
  5. Explore ways to avoid student loan debt.
    • Start saving as early as possible (e.g. Education Savings Account ESA, my529 Plan)
    • Apply for financial aid by completing the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid)
    • Apply for scholarships
    • Determine cost of future academic and career goals
    • Take courses with college credit (e.g. AP, IB, Concurrent Enrollment (CE), etc.)
  6. Discuss the long-term impact of student loan debt.
    • Ability to purchase large items (e.g. house or car)
    • Personal relationships
    • Stress level

Strand 4 Performance Objectitives
Students will begin to create a portfolio that includes: ē A career assessment

  1. Insights and reflections (positive and negative) related to the individual process of middle/junior high school, high school, postsecondary, and career preparation aligned to individual Plan for College and Career Readiness (PCCR).

UEN logo - in partnership with Utah State Board of Education (USBE) and Utah System of Higher Education (USHE).  Send questions or comments to USBE Specialist - Ashley  Higgs and see the CTE/College and Career Awareness website. For general questions about Utah's Core Standards contact the Director - THALEA  LONGHURST.

These materials have been produced by and for the teachers of the State of Utah. Copies of these materials may be freely reproduced for teacher and classroom use. When distributing these materials, credit should be given to Utah State Board of Education. These materials may not be published, in whole or part, or in any other format, without the written permission of the Utah State Board of Education, 250 East 500 South, PO Box 144200, Salt Lake City, Utah 84114-4200.