Career Development in Organizational Settings : Graduate Counselling and Applied Psychology (GCAP) 647

Career Development in Organizational Settings (Revision 2)


Permanently closed, effective May 2, 2018.

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Delivery Mode: Paced study; online

Credits: 3

Area of Study: Graduate Studies

Prerequisite: GCAP 631, GCAP 633, GCAP 645

Faculty: Faculty of Health Disciplines

Centre: Graduate Centre for Applied Psychology


GCAP 647: Career Development in Organizational Settings is designed to introduce students to the wide range of roles that counsellors, particularly career counsellors, can play within organizations. Rooted in the model of Career Engagement (i.e., that optimal career engagement involves balancing the level of challenge with the continuously changing combination of individual and organizational capacity), this course also takes a culture-infused approach to organizational development, embracing the strengths that diversity brings.

Career counselling is a unique area of specialization at the intersection between counselling and career development. Within this course, through readings, discussions, experiential activities, and practical assignments, students will examine current career-related organizational development topics including: career engagement, employee selection, orientation and inclusion / embracing diversity, retention, employee engagement, employee development, talent management/coaching, leadership development, stress in the workplace, return-to-work plans, change and transitions, outplacement, and team strengthening.


  • Lesson 1: Career Engagement: Aligning Challenges to Individual and Organizational Capacity
  • Lesson 2: Employee Selection: Getting the Right People Into the Right Jobs at the Right Time
  • Lesson 3: Employee Orientation and Inclusion: A Culture-Infused Approach to “Onboarding”
  • Lesson 4: Retention: Using Career Development to Inspire Employees to Stay
  • Lesson 5: Employee Engagement: What Does It Really Mean?
  • Lesson 6: Employee Development: Strategies for Helping Employees Be the Best They Can Be
  • Lesson 7: Talent Management and Coaching: Setting Goals and Shaping Performance
  • Lesson 8: Leadership Development: Benchmarking Skills and Building Competency
  • Lesson 9: Stress in the Workplace: Recognizing Stressors, Fostering Resiliency, and Strengthening Coping Resources
  • Lesson 10: Return-to-Work Action Plans: Facilitating a Smooth and Sustainable Re-Entry
  • Lesson 11: Navigating Change and Transitions: A Systems Approach
  • Lesson 12: Outplacement: Supporting “Gracious Exits” for Individuals and Organizations 
  • Lesson 13: Team Strengthening and Synergy: When the Whole Truly is Greater Than the Sum of Its Parts

Course Evaluation

To receive credit for GCAP 647, students must submit all of the course assignments. The passing grade for the course is 70%. The assessment structure for GCAP 647: Career Development in Organizational Settings is based on the following course activities, with the percentage weighting of each activity as indicated. Your final grade for the course will be a composite mark based on your performance in these course activities.

Course Activity Weight
Participation in Online Discussions 20%
Assignment 1: Critical Incident 20%
Assignment 2: Making a Case for Career Development 25%
Assignment 3: Design a Career Development Program, Toolkit, or Resource 35%
Total 100%

Course Materials

Course Texts

All course materials are available online.

Other Information

Students with a disability, who require academic accommodation, need to register with the Access to Students with Disabilities Centre at Athabasca University. Notification of the need for academic accommodation must normally be provided to the program office no later than fourteen (14) days prior to the first day of class. It is the student's responsibility to register with the Disability Centre to request academic accommodation if required and to notify the instructor that such accommodation has been requested. Every reasonable effort will be made to accommodate individual student needs. However, because GCAP courses are paced, all student are required to participate weekly in the online discussion forums. There are also several courses where online exams are required.

Athabasca University reserves the right to amend course outlines occasionally and without notice.

Opened in Revision 2, April 2013.

View previous syllabus