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Postgraduate Certificate in Careers Leadership Postgraduate Certificate

  • Level(s) of Study: Postgraduate taught / Professional
  • Start Date(s): October 2022, and ongoing start dates throughout the academic year
  • Duration: 24 Weeks
  • Study Mode(s): Part-time
  • Campus: City Campus
  • Entry Requirements:
    More information


This programme can be studied via an accredited and non-accredited route. Students can undertake this course fully-distanced or through a blended approach.

Nottingham Trent University has been designing and delivering professional training and courses for practitioners in the career development field since 1973 and has developed a strong national reputation in the field. Our dedicated staff are professionally trained practitioners in the career development sector, and they provide a wealth of experience and support for our students. The team are actively engaged in research and other professional activities, including delivering papers at conferences and training events. Not only is the curriculum content enriched by these activities, but they also feed directly in to our approaches to teaching and learning.

This programme has been designed with the busy professional in mind. It's delivered over a twenty-four week period via a blended learning platform comprising:

  • Online weekly activities - which are asynchronous and, so, can be undertaken at a convenient time within the week, with opportunity to share ideas and examples from practice.
  • Four workshop days – you can opt to take all four via Teams or on-campus (the latter being subject to sufficient demand).
  • Tutorials - via Teams, which are 'opt-in' during the programme.

A platform of carefully constructed bite-size activities enables the synthesis of theory and practice, supporting the reflection and application of ideas to your own institutional and regional context. The workshop days are vital in establishing supportive relationships and promoting the sharing of good practice, which are key to successful outcomes. On-going support and feedback are embedded within the structure.

This course starts in September 2022 and has additional start dates throughout the year.

What you’ll study

The course aims to equip you as a Careers Leader to:

  • Apply knowledge and understanding of key theoretical, political and ethical positions in the context of your role.
  • Evaluate your institution’s careers provision utilising the Gatsby Benchmarks and generate a strategic careers plan to enhance provision.
  • Apply understanding of leadership skills to advocate for and manage strategic and sustainable change.
  • Enhance personal effectiveness within your role as a career professional.

Aligned to the programme content, the training will enable you to:

  • Reflect on the results of your Compass audit, sharing insights and good practice for future development.
  • Evaluate key theories, relevant to career related learning, and apply those insights for designing and developing careers education and learning within your institution.
  • Explore models and approaches to curriculum design and learning pedagogy in order to evaluate your careers programme and develop the links to the wider curriculum.
  • Develop your understanding of career and labour market information, including education, training and employment routes, and how it can inform your institution’s careers strategy and programme.
  • Critique policy, legislation and frameworks associated with career education and guidance in schools and colleges, including SEND and alternative provision settings, applying those insights for benchmarking and developing your programme.
  • Appraise the responsibilities and principles underpinning key functions of careers leadership, including co-ordination, networking, management and leadership, utilising key theoretical perspectives in relation to leadership and change management to support you in developing these aspects of your role.
  • Determine principles underpinning a strategic approach to the monitoring, evaluation and review process, and apply these insights for producing a strategic careers plan with targets, actions and recommendations to enhance provision.
  • Develop yourself and the careers provision by engaging in reflection and evaluation, and in light of new evidence and contemporary thinking within the career development sector.

Don’t just take our word for it, hear from our students themselves

Student Profiles

Joanne Leach

Postgraduate Certificate in Careers Leadership

Jo Mcfadden the course tutor was fantastic from the very start until the final hand in of assignments. I could not have asked for any more support.

Stacey Mottershaw

Completing the PG Cert actually enabled me to go on and secure a new role, which is 100% relevant to the course content. My new role is as Teaching Fellow and involves lots of 1:1s, as well as curriculum design and assessment.

How you’re taught

Our blended mode of online asynchronous teaching and workshop days won the UK Career Development Institute Award for ‘Best Practice in the use of Technology Career Development’, sponsored by Prospects, in recognition of our innovative use of technology to support student careers development practitioners.

Student learning is supported through a range of scaffolded and collaborative teaching and learning activities, within a teaching and learning environment that fosters student-centred, facilitative learning. Incorporated within the design of the teaching and learning are opportunities to share good practice, gain peer feedback, as well as tutor feedback. Tutorials will support the personalisation of the learning and enable you to discuss individual situations on a one-to-one basis with your tutor.  Our methods are varied and include:

  • face-to-face training days
  • online activities using digital technology, for example Padlet, audio/visual recordings
  • individual tutorials
  • case study investigations
  • interactive and collaborative group learning
  • formative tasks that enable you to gain feedback on your learning
  • presentations
  • reflective logs that facilitate and develop learning during teaching and learning

As a student of NTU, you’ll have access to a wide range of student support services including an extensive online library, access to the most current research in the field of career development, and online study materials.

The programme is offered via accredited and non-accredited routes. For those studying on the accredited route, you can gain an award of a 60-credit postgraduate certificate at Masters/postgraduate level, which will enable you to progress onto our postgraduate diploma or full masters provision.

Staff Profiles

Jo McFadden

Senior Lecturer

School of Social Sciences

Jo McFadden

Lisa Wardle

Deputy Head of Department

School of Social Sciences

Lisa Wardle

Campus and facilities

NTU offers a wide range of learning resources and facilities to all students. As a Social Sciences student, you’ll also have easy access to the fantastic facilities in the Chaucer and Taylor buildings as well as online facilities. These include:

  • Lecture theatres and teaching classrooms;
  • Access to the NTUs Online Workspace (NOW)
  • Open access PCs and secure wireless points;
  • Study areas and social spaces;
  • Chaucer café, serving drinks and light snacks;
  • Our School of Social Sciences reception, providing you with easy access to our helpful and friendly support staff;
  • The School’s media room to support skill development
  • If you choose to study the Qualification in Career Development Professional Standards (QCD) as part of the MA, as a Student Member of the CDI you will also have access to CDI events, webinars, conferences and courses.

IT resources

Our IT resource rooms and PC clusters are distributed across our City Campus, with PCs providing access to Microsoft Office, email, web browsing, networked file storage and high-speed online printing services, with a free printing allowance for each student. Our IT Service Desk is also available during working hours to support you with any IT queries you may have.

Resource rooms are available 24 hours a day.

Books and library resources

Our state-of-the-art Boots library will give you access to an extensive and diverse range of books and periodicals that focus on specialist areas within the built environment. The library's OneSearch system provides access to all our electronic resources, journals and books, including the most current research within the field of career development.

Within the library there is a liaison librarian who has specialist subject knowledge and can offer detailed help in finding and using print and electronic resources, and also with areas such as Harvard referencing, research skills and academic writing.  There are also opportunities to book one-to-one online tutorial support with the library team via Skype.

Fees and funding

Fees and funding

The Postgraduate Certificate in Careers Leadership is being funded by The Careers & Enterprise Company.  In order to be eligible for a place on the course, all Careers Leaders need to register for training on The Careers & Enterprise Company’s website.

How to apply

How to apply

If you have any questions and would like to find out more about the programme or you wish to apply for the programme please contact Jo McFadden the programme leader, at:

Application dates

Recruitment is ongoing.