Career Integrated Learning

The University of Alberta Career Integrated Learning program (CIL) supports undergraduate students and faculty members by enhancing their awareness of employability skills developed through academic coursework.

What are employability skills? 

Employability involves the skills, knowledge, and attributes that make an individual more likely to obtain and maintain employment in their chosen field. Employability skills are the skills that contribute to obtaining and maintaining work. The CIL program draws on the employability skills developed by the Conference Board of Canada.

Why Career Integrated Learning (CIL)?

Based on similar programs at Memorial University and Wilfrid Laurier University, and research conducted at the U of A, CIL helps faculty members identify the employability skills that are practiced in their course. Faculty members include the skills as a new section of their syllabus, which helps to increase students’ awareness of their employability skills. 

Employability development is important to students and CIL is a relatively easy way to address these skills in academic coursework. CIL does not require faculty members to change their course curriculum; rather it works with existing curricula to identify the skills practiced. This, in turn, helps students to become aware of the employability skills developed in their courses.

Benefits to students
  • Increase their awareness of transferable skills and how they assist in employment outcomes and understand how to apply that knowledge in their career decision-making and job search. 
  • Increase their appreciation for course content beyond subject knowledge and encourage deeper learning using assessments already embedded in their courses. CIL gives students the chance to better understand the purpose of an assignment and how it relates to their personal and professional development.
  • Increase ability to identify skills developed in course projects, assignments and activities
  • Increase their ability to deconstruct their experiences and identify and articulate competencies
  • Increase their confidence in ability to articulate those skills in pursuit of future educational and career goals 
  • Engage in reflective practice on how their academic learning will help with future employment outcomes

Program Details 

The CIL program includes 3 main components which will be developed by Career Centre staff through conversations with participating faculty staff.

Employability Skills Inventory
Using the Employability skills list crafted by the Conference Board of Canada, Career Centre staff will review your course syllabus and draft a list of recommended employability skills.
In-class presentation

At the beginning of the semester, Career Centre staff will provide an in-class presentation to students. This presentation will introduce the CIL program to students directly and can be tailored to the needs of your course and available time. 

The presentation will: 

  • Introduce the concept of employability skills 
  • The value of employability skills to employers
  • Examples of how skills will be developed in their coursework
End of term reflective activity
At the end of the semester, Career Centre staff will facilitate a reflective activity to students regarding the CIL program and employability skills. The reflective activity can be tailored to the unique needs of your course and time available. A sample list of activities will also be provided during initial meetings with Career Centre staff.

Information for Faculty Staff (Professors, Instructors)

We are committed to the implementation of CIL with minimal increase to a faculty staff’s workload. That is why all components of the CIL program are developed by Career Centre staff. Faculty staff will inform each component through meetings with Career Centre staff and have the final say regarding each component. 

For a more in-depth look at how the CIL program can be implemented in your course, including the overall time commitment anticipated, please refer to our CIL Program Guide for Faculty Staff 

Faculty Member Registration