Career and Technical Education
Commonly known as vocational education, career and technical education is one of the most preferred areas of learning in today’s tough and highly competitive world. It was designed and developed for a great purpose – to prepare the students, youth and adults, for a wide array of career paths that require a number of education levels or degrees. As such, career and technical education is now serving as a planned program of courses and learning experiences that allows the people to know the right path for them to go by exploring and learning first the available career choices which will in turn help them support their own academic and life skills. Career and technical education is also offered to assist people in achieving the highest standards in the academic field, as well as in preparing them for the world of work.
There is one distinct fact that sets career and technical education different from the other forms of learning – it is an essential part of the high school curriculum. Yes, career and technical education is typically offered as a component of the high school curriculum. However, there are also some schools that offer this option other than the high schools, and the list may include the middle schools, two-year community and technical colleges, and other postsecondary institutions.
In the United States, the career and technical education represents as much as third of the students’ high school experience. It encompasses a number of subjects that are all associated to its being a preparatory course, including business, trade and industrial, health occupations, agriculture, family and consumer sciences, marketing, and technology. Each of these areas even has its own specific sub-areas and all of these are offered in different ways.
For instance, career and technical education is offered at public middle schools in the United States as a form of family and consumer sciences and technology education. In this way, students are just given the chance to benefit from a modular series of courses that enable them to explore a number of different careers that are to some degree technology-based. On the other hand, most of the high schools in the United States offer career and technical education either within a comprehensive high school or in a separate area that caters to vocation and technical aspects. There are also others that offer career and technical education in full time vocational and technical high schools and it is commonly offered as a series of courses where work-based experiences are highly supplemented. Internships and apprenticeships then are highly considered as part of the overall curriculum.
The career and technical education is currently becoming one of the largest enterprises in the United States with thousands of high schools, vocational and technical schools, area vocational centers, and even community colleges offering programs that are associated to it. According to certain surveys, almost every high school student takes the course and about 40 million of adults today are undergoing postsecondary occupational trainings.