University Guidance: in search for a New Educational Approach to inform Italian Higher Education

Daniela Sideri, Giovanna Campanella


Purpose. The purpose of this paper is to draw a conceptual analytical framework to help understanding university guidance as a sociologically relevant issue and a matter of educational and active learning strategies, that needs to be redesigned through adequate policy interventions, so as to primarily promote the development of metacognitive skills and eventually positively impact the phenomenon of NEETS and graduates’ employability.
Design/methodology/approach. The paper analyses the current Italian policies on guidance, and presents a literature review accounting for those teaching experiences and practices already known as effective in terms of students’ learning and empowerment, thus focusing on employability and project-based learning, active learning and learning patterns.
Findings. The paper advances the proposal of an original, educational model of university guidance, arguing that effective guidance should shift from being extracurricular, as it currently is in Italian universities, to being embedded in curricula, thus becoming part of the learning process.
Research limitations/implications. The research proposes an analytical framework and a policy proposal, inviting future empirical investigation.
Originality/value. The paper contends that existing models of guidance represent an inadequate, incomplete and ineffective approach, due to the insufficient attention paid to a proper educational dimension, hence develops an original model of university guidance built on the already extant division into entry-progress-exit guidance, but substantially renewing each phase with different activities, meant to be compulsory curricular learning activities, and within an integrated organizational framework.
Paper type. Conceptual paper.