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Ethical career counselling

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Published: 3 July 2020

Dr Lawrence Jones-Esan is a lecturer in Business Management at the University of Sunderland in London

Dr Lawrence Jones-Esan is a lecturer in Business Management at the University of Sunderland in London. His article, Ethics in Career Counselling in the 21st Century explores moral behaviour in the workplace. The article focuses on how career counselling, the practice of advising students on their future career options, can be practised ethically in universities.

“Ethical issues have a profound impact on the life and career path of our students. Ethics has been a key part of professional conduct and behaviour for a long time. It leads to interesting and engaging debates among career counsellors. Other than maintaining a normal level of workplace practice, ethics is also a vital part of a lecturer's duty to their students. As people with deep insights into our industries and specialisms, we regularly counsel our students, guiding both their studies and their career paths.

There are a number of theories behind ethics in career counselling. But a common theme for all of them is that it helps future professionals understand themselves and ethical practice better. It is a way of making sure you are making well thought through career decisions, both for yourself and the people who your clients.

The University of Sunderland in London had a number of undergraduate and postgraduate courses designed around the idea of ethics in career counselling. We want our students to think critically about the fundamentals at the heart of best practice. This could be around people management, leadership, professional identity or whichever area of business you choose to focus on.

Our business courses have a global outlook, designed for an ever-changing world of work with a focus on ethical and professional management. This focus is very intentional. Modern businesses are increasingly thinking about how to navigate ethical dilemmas, getting rid of unethical business practices, and supporting moral corporate leadership.

Students study a curriculum rooted in ethical discussions and how ethics affect organisations and professionals. We want our students to think about the cross-section of business ethics and professionalism in management. These theories play into the career counselling skills and knowledge they learn, giving a well-rounded education that can be applied in the real world. We want our students to understand, appreciate, and apply ethical codes and behaviours to their work-places when they graduate.”

Dr Lawrence Jones-Esan teaches on the BA (Hons) Busines and Management and MSc International Business and Management courses at the University of Sunderland in London. Visit the course pages to find out more about our business degrees.

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