Professional Development: GCDF and CCSP Training

What is a Certified Career Development Facilitator (GCDF) and a Certified Career Services Provider (CCSP)?

A GCDF/CCSP is a person who works in any career development setting or who incorporates career development information or skills in their work with students, adults, clients, employees, or the public. A professional with this training has received in-depth instruction in a 120-hour class provided by a nationally qualified and certified trainer. This training is centered on 12 competencies which were developed by the National Career Development Association (NCDA), the professional association for career development. Successful completion of the class leads to two certificates: the GCDF from the Center for Credentialing and Education, a subsidiary of the National Board for Certified Counselors (NBCC) and the CCSP from the National Career Development Association NCDA's information on CCSP.

Who Should Receive this Training?

CDF Training
This training can enhance the skills and knowledge of individuals who work in any type of career development setting. This may include those who serve as a career group facilitator, career coach, intake interviewer, human resource specialist, school counselor, job search trainer, labor market information resource person, employment/ placement specialist, or workforce development staff person. Participants from past classes have included those who work in corporations, government agencies, technical colleges, small private companies, large universities, high schools and middle schools, correctional institutions, and entrepreneurial settings.

Benefits of the Training and Certification

As a participant, you will receive training in each of the competencies. Since the course content covers 12 important competencies, there is plenty of opportunity to build skills and knowledge in areas that are new to you, as well as enhance and develop those that you use every day in your work. The training offered at the University of Wisconsin-Madison is offered in a hybrid format. Much of the course work is delivered online and there are four face-to-face days in Madison. Attendance is required all four days.

Course Content

The course focuses on twelve career-related competencies, developed by a national team of experts and practitioners through the National Career Development Association.

  1. Helping Skills - Be proficient in the basic career facilitating process
  2. Labor Market Information and Resources - Understand labor market and occupational information and trends; use current resources
  3. Working with Diverse Populations - Recognize special needs of various groups and adapting services to meet their needs
  4. Technology and Career Development - Comprehend and use career development computer applications
  5. Ethical and Legal Issues - Follow the CDF code of ethics and know current legislative regulations
  6. Employability Skills - Know job search strategies and placement techniques, especially in working with specific groups
  7. Consultation/Supervision - Accept suggestions for performance improvement from consultants or supervisors
  8. Training Clients and Peers - Prepare and develop materials for training programs and presentations
  9. Career Development Theories and Models
  10. Program Management and Implementation - Understand career development programs and assist in the steps related to their development
  11. Assessment - Comprehend and use (under supervision) both formal and informal career development assessments with emphasis on relating appropriate ones to the population served
  12. Promotion and Public Relations - Knowing how to market and promote career development programs with staff and supervisors

Qualifications for Applicants

All course applicants must have a high school diploma or a GED to enroll in the class. When applying for national certification after the course, the requirements look at both work experience and educational levels to meet the certification requirements. For the GCDF, the requirements are:

Educational Level of Applicant Career Development Experience Required
Graduate degree 1,400 hours (estimated one year)
Bachelor's degree 2,800 hours (estimated two years)
Two years of college 4,200 hours (estimated three years)
High school diploma/ GED 5,600 hours (estimated four years)

For the CCSP, there is a test that needs to be completed and references that need to be submitted to meet certification requirements.

Course Schedule

The course is offered in a convenient hybrid format to suit the varying needs and schedules of participants. This format includes the online coursework as well as two 2-day trips for face-to-face meetings at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.**


Dates Location Cost Class format
Fall 2018 - Madison, WI
Sept. 4 - Dec. 21, 2018
Online and...
2 meetings in Madison, WI on Sept. 27-28 and Nov. 1-2, 2018
Fall Tuition (Madison): $1450.00 Books will be purchased by the student. Estimated book costs: $175-$185 GCDF and CCSP Home Study/ Distance Education (hybrid)

Fall 2018 - Green Bay, WI
Sept. 18, 2018 - Jan. 14, 2019
Online and...
2 meetings in Green Bay, WI Oct. 18-19 and Nov. 28-29, 2018
Fall Tuition (Green Bay): $1450.00
Fall 2018 - Janesville, WI
Sept. 25–Jan - 22, 2019
Online and...
1 orientation (Sept. 18, 2018) and 2 meetings in Janesville, WI Nov. 6-7 and Dec. 6-7, 2018
Fall Tuition (Janesville): $1450.00
Summer 2019
June 4 - Sept. 6, 2019
Online and...
2 meetings in Madison, WI on June 24-25 and July 25-26, 2019
Summer Tuition: $1450.00
Books will be purchased by the student. Estimated book costs: $175-$185
Fall 2019
Sept. 10 - Dec. 23, 2019
Online and...
2 meetings in Madison, WI on Oct 3-4 and Nov. 14-15, 2019
Fall Tuition: $1450.00
Books will be purchased by the student. Estimated book costs: $175-$185

* Participant is additionally responsible for housing, meals, and other incidental costs of the Madison trips. A block of rooms is being held at or near the UW-Madison for events requiring housing. Madison classes are held in the Educational Sciences Building on campus, located at 1025 W. Johnson Street. The classes last the entire day (approximately 9 am - 5 pm).

Scholarship Availability

The Wisconsin Career Development Association (WCDA) is offering a $500 scholarship for a 2017 CDF class member. Information will be coming soon about the future scholarship. Scholarship Information

Overnight Accommodations

Make your reservations early; rooms fill up quickly and blocks will not be left open past the dates indicated!

Fall 2018

Madison, WI
September 27-28, 2018 Trip to Madison:
For the nights of September 26, 27 and 28
The Madison Concourse Hotel & Governor’s Club, Phone: 800-356-8293
One West Dayton Street
Madison, WI 53703
Fax: 608-257-8454
Reserve rooms under the group name: CDF September 26-29. Rates are Single: $149, Double: $149, Triple $159 Quad: $169. Call to reserve your room by September 5th; after that date, blocked rooms will be released to the public.

November 1-2, 2018 Trip to Madison:
For the nights of October 31, November 1 and 2
The Madison Concourse Hotel & Governor’s Club, Phone: 800-356-8293
One West Dayton Street
Madison, WI 53703
Fax: 608-257-8454
Reserve rooms under the group name: CDF Fall October 31-November 3. Rates are Single: $149, Double: $149, Triple $159 Quad: $169. Call to reserve your room by October 3rd; after that date, blocked rooms will be released to the public.

Other hotels in the area include:
  • Doubletree 525 West Johnson Street, Madison, Wisconsin, 53703, USA TEL: 1-608-251-5511 (10 minute walk to the classroom)
  • Hampton Inn 440 West Johnson Street, Madison, Wisconsin, 53703, USA TEL: 1-608-255-0360 (15 minute walk to the classroom)
  • Hyatt Place 333 West Washington Avenue Madison, Wisconsin, USA, 53703 Tel: +1 608 257 2700 (This is a 25 minute walk from our classroom but they do have a shuttle that could bring you here.)