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  4. ASPIRES Case Study 7: Career Exploration (Year 9)

ASPIRES Case Study 7: Career Exploration (Year 9)


Career Exploration with Year 9 Students

School: The London Nautical School, Lambeth (All boys school, state funded)

Teacher: Catherine Wilberforce (

OverviewAs part of the Year 9 preparation for their GCSE courses that we start after Easter we start doing pieces of work that will directly relate to topics at KS4. We believe that by giving them the opportunity to look at the ‘bigger picture’ in Science they will engage in their science learning more and be able to start thinking about their A Level choices early! 

Type of lesson: Classroom based, part of the pupils’ introduction to Material chemistry. 

Why did you do this?

We wanted the pupils to have an overview of careers in science and to start thinking about the wide range of opportunities there are in science industries. For each year group we have a few sessions that focus on ‘Careers in Science’ in order to keep up the emphasis on careers across year groups throughout their time at The London Nautical School. We also wanted to get pupils (AND TEACHERS) to start thinking about the wide range of careers out there in general and to make lessons more relevant to the real world. Career-centric learning can help pupils visualise uses for the Science they learn in the classroom. 

Summary of Activities

ICT lesson where pupils are pitched against each other to find out about the most interesting jobs going in the Chemistry industry. 

Lesson: What types of careers can a scientist have? (computer based research: Search the internet for ‘jobs in the Chemistry industry’ with classroom discussion) 

Timing : 1 x 50 minute lesson 


Materials: Computers, pens and hand out - Download chemistry job profile 

Learning and Other Outcomes/Evaluation

The findings are put up onto a ‘chemistry board’ in the classroom and pupils can see what other pupils researched. The more unusual findings were discussed in class as pupils try to ‘sell’ their chosen career profile. 

Student work:

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Curriculum Links

‘Material Properties’ is a topic we teach in Year 9 to feed into the Core, Additional and Triple Science GCSE modules that are about materials and the chemical industry. 

Top Tips

Make sure you have covered different keywords that they can then use as a starting point to do their research. If they are stuck tell them to use the search string: ‘jobs in the chemical industry’ or something similar and lots of ‘chemistry job sites’ will come up. They then can choose ones that look interesting to them.