Adult guidance worker
Social Service & Guidance

Adult guidance workers help people to reflect on employment, training and education opportunities.

They are also known as educational guidance workers.

Work Activities

Adult guidance workers support people to make informed and realistic choices about their future.

Responsibilities may include:

  • Providing information, advice and guidance relating to careers, courses and training opportunities
  • Linking individuals' skills and interests to careers
  • Working with individuals or groups in workshop settings
  • Working face to face or online
  • Keeping up to date with latest labour market information and changes in government policy relating to training and employment opportunities
  • Act on a client's behalf eg. Get financial help or arrange accommodation or childcare
  • Travelling to different locations

Personal Qualities and Skills

Key skills for adult guidance workers

  • Good communication and team-working skills
  • Ability to demonstrate impartiality empathy, patience and interest in clients' needs
  • Good listening skills and ability to ask 'open' questions
  • Knowledge of local labour market, training and education opportunities
  • Ability to work with a wide range of people from different backgrounds and with different skills, interests and abilities
  • Creative problem solver
  • Good time management and administrative skills
  • Driving licence may be useful

Pay And Opportunities

Typical employers

  • Careers organisations
  • Colleges and universities
  • Libraries, community centres
  • Information Advice and Guidance Services

Job vacancies are advertised in local/national newspapers, job boards and specialist recruitment agencies.


Qualifications and training required

There are routes into a career as an adult guidance worker for both university graduates and school leavers. Transferable communication and 'people' skills gained from teaching, youth and community or probation work are also useful.

A common route for many adult guidance workers is after a 3-year degree in any discipline. The usual minimum entry requirement for a degree in any subject is 2 A levels and a good mix of GCSEs, including English and Maths. BTEC Level 3 national qualifications may also be considered. Scottish applicants to degree courses usually require a minimum of 4 Highers. National 5 Maths and English are often specified as requirements. Some graduates go onto complete a postgraduate Qualification in Careers Guidance (QCG) which combines academic study with work-based learning (1-year full time and 2 years part-time). Some QCG courses may accept students without a first degree if you can provide evidence that you will be able to cope with the demands of postgraduate study.

The NVQ Level 4 Diploma in Advice and Guidance is aimed at people already working in guidance areas eg. Colleges, universities.

Make sure you check individual university, college or employer entry qualifications carefully, as specific requirements may differ.

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