Career Pathways and Programs of Study

Programs of study (POS) -- an essential element of career pathways -- represent the most recent federal effort to better align high school and postsecondary education with the demands of the changing global economy and provide a more coherent pathway for youth as they move toward adulthood.

Shaped by labor market demand, POS align secondary and postsecondary curricula and offer students the ability to explore careers, earn industry recognized credentials, and participate in dual credit-earning opportunities, thus potentially shortening their time to a postsecondary degree. Developing education systems to support this requires evidence to guide the development of policy and the design of practice. The NRCCTE at the University of Louisville is producing the only systematic body of evidence on POS.


Technical Assistance for Implementing Career Pathways Systems Initiative

The NRCCTE at SREB is working with Manhattan Strategy Group (MSG) and other partners on a project funded by the Office of Career, Technical, and Adult Education at the U.S. Department of Education designed to increase access to high-quality career pathways for youth and adults. Learn more about the project here.

Research Studies on Career Pathways / Programs of Study

To evaluate the impact of POS, in 2007-2008, the NRCCTE commissioned three longitudinal, field-based studies of POS across the country as well as two additional qualitative studies. Our other POS-related activities have included technical assistance and a field-based video series on the activities of states, districts, and institutions implementing POS.

Other Projects Related to Career Pathways / Programs of Study

Special Publications on POS

Techniques Magazine (January 2012 Programs of Study Issue)

International Journal of Educational Reform (Spring 2012 Special Issue)