Career Practitioners

Professional Standards


Endorsed Courses




Professional Standards

The Career Industry Council of Australia (CICA), supported by the Australian Government, developed and published the:

Professional Standards for Australian Career Development Practitioners.

The publication of the Professional Standards represents a landmark in the history of Australian career development and a benchmark for career development practitioners.

The Professional Standards:

  • Define the career industry, its membership and its services;
  • Recognise the diverse skills and knowledge of career practitioners;
  • Guide practitioner entry into the industry;
  • Provide a foundation for designing career practitioner training;
  • Provide quality assurance to the public and other stakeholders;
  • Establish a benchmark against which career practitioners can be assessed, evaluated and judged by their peers and by others;
  • Require career practitioners to undertake continuing professional development;
  • Create an agreed terminology for the industry.

Click CICA Professional Standards to download your copy of the Standards.

FAQs Professional Standards updated July 2010

History of the Professional Standards

Scoping Paper

A scoping paper for the project was written by Dr Mary McMahon, called “Shaping Career Development Culture – Standards Shaping Paper“. This paper identified key issues and information relevant to developing national standards for career practitioners in Australia. It provided the framework for discussions at the National Forum for Career Practitioners.

National Forum for Career Practitioners

The National Forum for Career Practitioners held on 25-26 August 2004, began the consultation phase, and gave participants the chance to have early input into the project. Although participation in the forum was limited, those invited were selected on the basis of their expertise and knowledge of issues relevant to standards and accreditation, and their capacity to assist in the widespread implementation of standards across Australia. Participants were also selected because they represented a group that is central to the development and acceptance of the standards.

National Consultation Process

A national consultation process then occurred which provided an opportunity for everyone to participate. This part of the project was managed by CICA and Miles Morgan Australia. The EdNA (Education Network Australia) website was regularly updated with information and mechanisms for those who wished to contribute in this consultation process and in the development of national standards. Miles Morgan produced a Consultation Report Standards that was distributed to all stakeholders.

Briefing Papers

These resources were used in the development of the Professional Standards. They are here for historical purposes only.

Briefing Paper 1 – Standards Background and Terminology

Briefing Paper 2 – An overview of the QS project

Briefing Paper 3 – A possible model

Briefing Paper 4 – Code of Ethics

Briefing Paper 5 – Continuing Professional Development

Briefing Paper 6 – Competency Frameworks

Briefing Paper 7 – Adoption and implementation

Briefing Paper 8 – Implementation of Professional Standards

Briefing Paper 9 – Implementation Update of Professional Standards

Briefing Paper 10 – Professional Standards FAQs

Briefing Paper 11 – CICA Professional Associations and Professional Standards

Briefing Paper 12 – Continuing Professional Development


Endorsed Courses

The Career Industry Council of Australia has examined program proposals put forward by the higher education providers as detailed below for the specific courses as listed.

In endorsing these programs the Career Industry Council of Australia has requested that each higher education provider work cooperatively with the CICA Endorsement Committee to enhance and further embed the standards within these programs.

CICA commends these higher education providers for their contribution to improving the quality of career services in Australia by conducting programs that meet the professional standards for Australian career development practitioners.

The endorsement is for a period of three years for Graduate Certificate qualifications and higher and for a period of two years for Certificate IV.

The programs listed below have been endorsed and meet the Professional Standards for Australian Career Practitioners.

Endorsed until March 2019
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Education
  • Master of Education
Endorsed until December 2018
  • Graduate Certificate in Education (Career Development)
  • Master of Education (Career Development specialization)
Endorsed until February 2019
  • Graduate Certificate of Career Development
Endorsed until June 2019
  • Postgraduate Certificate in Educational Studies (Career Development)
  • Graduate Diploma in Educational Studies (Career Development)
  • Master of Educational Studies (Career Development)
Endorsed until September 2019
  • Graduate Certificate in Career Education and Development
  • Graduate Diploma in Career Education and Development
  • Graduate Certificate in Career Development Practice - Endorsed until October 2020
  • Certificate IV in Career Development - Endorsed until October 2018
Endorsed until March 2019
  • Graduate Certificate in Education Studies (Careers and Transition Specialisation)
Currently Under Review
  • Graduate Certificate of Education (GCEF) Career Development Specialisation
  • Graduate Diploma of Education (GDEF) Career Development Specialisation
  • Master of Education (MEDF) Career Development Specialisation
Endorsed until August 2020
  • Specialist Diploma in Career Counselling


At the December 2014 meeting of the CICA Council, it was agreed by all members to establish CICA as a Registration Body.

CICA will commence accepting applications for registration from persons at three category levels.

  • Affiliate
  • Professional
  • Certified Leading Professional

For more information, please click here.