Friday, May 29, 2009
The jobs listing link is posted in the column to the right.
Tuesday, May 26, 2009
Yes, I know that the car industry is in trouble world wide. It's certainly a gruesome enough example of trends. However, as an industry it might just be a little too close to many of us for dispassionate study.
As an alternative, let's consider what's happening in ... beer mats. That's one of them in the picture there. Here in Canada most of us would call them coasters, right. They are a more significant feature of life throughout Britain and Ireland where they are used in thousands upon thousands of wine bars and public houses ('pubs'). You might think of them simply as a way of insulating wet glass from table top. In contrast, advertisers have, until fairly recently, thought of them as valuable real estate directly under the eyes of consumers. That is changing.
Oddly enough, the single company that has 75% of beer mat manufacturing market share is in serious financial difficulty. How could this possibly be?
Read the article at Last orders for beer mat maker? for the answers and then see if you can fill in all the blanks. Why are ashtrays in trouble? Why might people be drinking at home? (One hopes that they are not drinking alone.) Why would the prices of alcoholic beverages be up? Is there any end in sight to the pattern of corporate mergers?
How can thinking like this be applied in one's own circumstances? When clients thinking about careers what can we do to induce them to think about trends? Are we any likelier to be good predictors than they are?
Monday, May 25, 2009
for title in [
'career development facillitator',
'career group facillitator',
'career resource centre coordinator',
'employment rehabilitation worker',
'employment services assessment officer',
'job finding club coordinator',
'job skills counsellor',
'language training instructor',
'vocational program facillitator',
'vocational rehabilitation consultant',
'vocational support worker',
I gleaned these job titles from those that were being used by employers in the advertisements that were listed before I added indeed.com to the collection. I suppose it's inevitable that employers will think of even more creative ways of describing what their people do. However, I hope these cover much of the ground. If you think of more please tell me.
Incidentally this added 29 items to the list. Unfortunately several of them relate to software rather than employment or careers. It can be difficult to filter them out in the absence of occupational codes in advertisements.
Friday, May 22, 2009
Open Weekend at knowcoach.ca about Career Assessments
The main theme this time will be the question of how and why agencies select the assessments that they use with clients. But feel free to discuss anything that might interest you and other participants.
As usual it would be best if you could register in advance of when you want to participate so that the usual email handshaking procedure has time to complete.
Hope to see you there!
Thursday, May 21, 2009
If your vacuum broke, you’d:
Take it apart
Buy a new one
This site offers a tonne of “tests” like this one. Although I can’t speak for their reliability, validity, face validity, freedom from spelling mistakes—or any other measures of test quality for that matter I would say that they might have the benefit of making a client’s mental juices flow. Come to think of it the term “mental juices” might be a little dated itself but you know what I mean, right?
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Even if you don't have clients who need language training let me mention that, thanks to skype, and sometimes to busuu, I have had the enormous pleasure of meeting and getting to know people from a small variety of places on the planet. You might enjoy that too.
Sunday, May 17, 2009
ContactPoint does not (yet) indicate province in their listings. I will try to add them so that my list sorts. I have also added colour coding so that you can discern the source of each listing. For example, 'Contact Point' appears in red and lines for jobs from Contact Point start with red.
If you notice problems, please let me know. If you know of other good sources of jobs, likewise.
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
I've underlined one query. It's not legible so I'll just say that it's the perennial, "I'm expecting to graduate with a degree in biology. What might I do when I graduate?" Many of LinkedIn's members are very experienced business people (and a lot are not). I wanted to see what they might suggest. I also wanted to work up an answer of my own, based on a search of Canada's NOC and/or perhaps the United States' SOC.
A little problem arises. It is that, as far as I know, no notification is provided to those of us who might be interested in this particular query when a response is provided. The RSS feed for this category of questions will contain a notification when the query is closed by the person who posed the query. Unfortunately, however, many questioners never trouble to close their queries. How can I follow this query to learn how others answer?
Actually, the answer is fairly simple. I use one of the many services that monitor individual pages for change and send items on RSS feeds in response to these changes. I use page2rss.com. Here it is as it appears in my Firefox browser interface.
The website for Page2RSS.com provides full installation instructions (which are dead easy to follow). With Page2RSS installed I follow the link from my news reader to the LinkedIn Answer in my browser. I click on the Page2RSS icon in my browser and Page2RSS creates a new page that contains a link to take me back to my news reader to handle the task of subscribing the the feed that Page2RSS is creating for me for this query. (Got that?)
Here's the page that Page2RSS makes. One is instructed to copy-paste the link. However, I find with FeedDemon that just clicking on the link does what is needed.
The first item you will see in your feed reader will be a notification that you are monitoring a page. After that, you will receive feed items when LinkedIn members respond to the query.
Sunday, May 10, 2009
If you're interested in stories then this is a place to start.
Saturday, May 9, 2009
[Drawn verbatim from funderstanding]
DefinitionConstructivism is a philosophy of learning founded on the premise that, by reflecting on our experiences, we construct our own understanding of the world we live in. Each of us generates our own “rules” and “mental models,” which we use to make sense of our experiences. Learning, therefore, is simply the process of adjusting our mental models to accommodate new experiences.
DiscussionThere are several guiding principles of constructivism:
- Learning is a search for meaning. Therefore, learning must start with the issues around which students are actively trying to construct meaning.
- Meaning requires understanding wholes as well as parts. And parts must be understood in the context of wholes. Therefore, the learning process focuses on primary concepts, not isolated facts.
- In order to teach well, we must understand the mental models that students use to perceive the world and the assumptions they make to support those models.
- The purpose of learning is for an individual to construct his or her own meaning, not just memorize the “right” answers and regurgitate someone else’s meaning. Since education is inherently interdisciplinary, the only valuable way to measure learning is to make the assessment part of the learning process, ensuring it provides students with information on the quality of their learning.
Curriculum–Constructivism calls for the elimination of a standardized curriculum. Instead, it promotes using curricula customized to the students’ prior knowledge. Also, it emphasizes hands-on problem solving.Instruction–Under the theory of constructivism, educators focus on making connections between facts and fostering new understanding in students. Instructors tailor their teaching strategies to student responses and encourage students to analyze, interpret, and predict information. Teachers also rely heavily on open-ended questions and promote extensive dialogue among students.
Assessment–Constructivism calls for the elimination of grades and standardized testing. Instead, assessment becomes part of the learning process so that students play a larger role in judging their own progress.Reading
Jacqueline and Martin Brooks, The Case for Constructivist Classrooms.
Incidentally I found the article about constructivism whilst trying out a new kid on the search engine block called scoopler. It’s in beta.
Thursday, May 7, 2009
But apparently not.
Because this article mentions that the organisers of the city of Hamilton's second annual Economic Summit found it necessary to hire Rebecca Ryan from a consultancy in Madison, Wisconsin to be the keynote speaker. Clearly we couldn't do this ourselves, eh.
Whilst we grope for ways of plugging this enormous hole in the competency of the local labour force let us hope that word of this does not spread very far! The last time I looked the local university in Hamilton--I think it's McMaster--had an Economics Department and a Business School. Is it possible that such a hiring choice reflects on this pool of talent? Is it possible that hiring personnel from other countries would reflect on this country's ability to perform internationally?
Or is it even just possible that hiring from other countries says something about our belief in ourselves?
"These results challenge the stereotype of comedians as neurotic extraverts, and suggest a discrepancy between their stage persona and their true personality traits."
Wednesday, May 6, 2009
Not only that, if you really enjoy this kind of reading I notice that one of the posts is The ultimate list of therapy blogs. Never one to take things too seriously, the therapist advises, "If anyone has been accidentally excluded or mis-labelled, don't spit your dummy just drop me an email or put links in the comments."
You get the idea.
Consider what will happen when an employer views the image to the right. I will lay you odds that they will see an upward-pointing triangle that appears a shade or two brighter than the surrounding area—in spite of the fact that the triangle is not there at all! Imagine that!
And I have some awful news: the same thing happens when employers read resumés and other marketing documents. They take the tiny flecks of data and fact that are sketched in these documents and they hallucinate entire stories to connect those facts. Employers simply cannot imagine that isolated facts don't go together the way that they think they should and if an applicant’s facts match an undesirable pattern in an employer’s head then the applicant has just come to the end of the job application process as far as that employer is concerned. No doubt about it.
You might be wondering if there is something that might be done. I think there is, and it relates to my sloppy definition of the problem. I left out the fact that the elements in the image (first described by Kanizsa) are carefully arranged. Put briefly, if you as the job applicant or career developer don't arrange the facts about the applicant into a creditable, coherent story then the employer will do it for themself. Unfortunately, as a matter of fact, in spite of our best efforts they often do it anyway.
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Monday, May 4, 2009
What I notice is that most of these are:
- being exploited in the U.S. or Britain—not Canada
- about ideas that have not yet been overdone anywhere.