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Career Guidance in Spain

Carrer Guidance in Spain Section: find out what career guidance is like in Spain.


The European Union considers Guidance as a continuous process that allows people, throughout their lives:

  • Determine their skills, competences and interests
  • Make educational, training and employment decisions
  • Manage their personal life pathway in education and training, at work and in other settings in which these skills and competences can be acquired or used.

Guidance includes individual or collective activities of information, consultation, skills assessment, support and teaching of skills necessary for decision-making and career management.


The European Council invites the Member States to apply the following guiding principles in their respective guidance systems:

  • Promote the lifelong acquisition of guidance skills: personal, educational and vocational career management skills.
  • Ease access to guidance services for all citizens
  • Develop quality assurance in guidance services
  • Promote coordination and cooperation between different actors at national, regional and local level.

Career Management Skills

Career management skills (CMS) are those competencies that help people to identify their skills, develop professional learning goals and improve their personal and professional careers.Salto de línea Within these competencies we highlight:

  • Self-awareness.
  • Decision-making.
  • Personal and professional project planning.
  • Personal skills.
  • Personal initiative and entrepreneurial spirit.
  • Social relationship and communication skills.
  • Active participation and management skills.
  • Discovery of the world of work.
  • Training pathways.
  • Work habits and attitudes necessary to obtain and maintain a job.

Work on the development of career management skills can help individuals to:

  • access and effectively use the full range of career guidance products and services at a time and place that suits their needs;
  • identify opportunities to develop their learning goals and employability skills, as well as understand how the labour market works; how to find a job; appreciate how and why industries and individual jobs within them are changing; and the types of skills needed to progress;
  • identify how to progress in the workplace;
  • be able to make better educational decisions, manage change and uncertainty through forward planning foresight and make confident choices about oneself.

Competent public administrations should design strategies and promote appropriate measures to ensure that, throughout life, individuals acquire these competences progressively and in accordance with their age, personal situation, interests and expectations.

Vocational Guidance in the Education System

All educational administrations have guidance services in the different stages of non-university education, both compulsory (Primary Education and Compulsory Secondary Education) and post-compulsory (Bachelor’s degree; VET; adult education and other training programmes aimed at students with specific difficulties due to the risk of early drop-out, special educational needs, etc.).

The intervention is organised by programmes, developing the different actions in three fundamental areas: attention to diversity and to the teaching-learning processes, support for the tutorial function and support in the development of the academic and vocational guidance plan.

Vocational guidance is carried out at the first level by all teaching staff: educational, academic and vocational guidance as an integral part of their teaching duties; and at a second level, by the specific guidance structures determined by each autonomous administration within the scope of its competences.

These specific guidance structures consist of guidance services, teams, units or departments made up of specialised teaching staff, which incorporate, together with the figure of the guidance counsellor, other professionals who help to meet the needs arising from the manifest diversity of abilities, conditions, behaviour or interests of pupils and to guarantee equal opportunities.

Vocational guidance is articulated through guidance and tutorial action plans and programmes that Pre-school and Primary Education Centres, Secondary Education Institutes and Integrated VET Centres develop through the action of the tutors, coordinated by the Head of Studies and with the specialised advice of the Guidance Teams and Departments that the Autonomous Communities, with competence in education, order with different types of regulations in each case.

These educational and vocational guidance plans and programmes are included in the Educational Project of the Centre and are updated annually through the Annual General Programme, which each educational centre draws up, develops and evaluates, in accordance with the annual Instructions on organisation and operation issued for this purpose by each educational Administration.


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