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                                                GAME CHANGERS: WHY CAREER PLANNING CAN MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE

Research Journal:

Dik, B., Sargent, A., Steger, M. (2008). Career Development Strivings: Assessing Goals and Motivation in Career Decision-Making and Planning. SAGE Publications, Journal of Career Development.


            Statistical analysis is crucial for every researcher in several fields because most researches need a lot of data to end up with a representative finding. This study used descriptive quantitative research and strivings approach in determining the goals and motives of the participants who are primarily involved in the career decision-making and planning process. The research is quantitative because the participants choose between several choices. So, there will be definite choice for each experiment. Moreover, the study is descriptive because it addresses what questions to the characteristics of a population. The approach allowed the researcher to assess individual differences in the extent to which participants are driven by types of motives (provided by the researcher) in pursuit of their self-generated goals.

            This was done by asking 255 student-participants through a web-based survey to create a list of strivings that the participants are presently targeting to accomplish. Participants then rated each striving along different criteria (e.g. self-efficacy, difficulty and meaningfulness) or account behaviors that are related to the achievement of that specific striving. It uses means, standard deviations and Cronbach alpha in analyzing the data gathered in the study. Specifically, mean and standard deviations were used to describe the level of Career Development Strivings among the participants. On the other hand, Cronbach alpha was utilized in determining the reliability of scores generated by the five appraisal scales.

            The study included three additional under-researched career domains namely: spirituality and religion, calling and vocation, and materialism. Participants generated five career development strivings, rated  each  striving  along  several  dimensions, namely: a) Career Decision Self-Efficacy; b) Intrinsic and Extrinsic Work Motivation; c) Presence of Calling; d) Meaning of Life; e) Religious Commitment; and f) Materialism.

                                                                                                  RESULTS AND FINDINGS

            Results of the study showed that there is an adequate to strong internal consistency reliability for  the  strivings appraisal  scale  scores,  and  the  pattern  of  correlations  support  the  convergent and discriminant validity for scores obtained using this approach. Based on the result of the study (Table 2, page 13 of the attached document), among the different strivings, Outcome Expectation and Self-Efficacy were more highly correlated with each other (r =0.61) as the value indicates a high level of internal consistency. It can be easily accepted that outcome expectation is related to self-efficacy, which is the belief that the one can accomplish ones missions and get the job done; no one can wait for outcomes without being confident of himself.    Interestingly, it can be noted that the career development strivings strategy has a great potential as an effective and efficient tool for utilization in career development research and practice.

                                                                          IMPLICAITONS: Knowing Differences in Similarities

            The research study implies that making career decisions is a process and not an event or stage in ones life and students should be able to realize such thing. People continuously make decisions about their future careers. And in doing so, one should make sound and informed decisions to make excellent choices. These decision can be built according to previous experience or on even others experience. However, one should make sure that when others made thses choices, they were on the same level of maturity and had same experience. Nevertheless, it is good also to know that the process of career decision is a milestones instead of trials. Making choices for career will always add value for the person and make him stand between other competitors.

It is also essential for an individual to understand oneself such as his/her skills, values and interest since these elements play a vital role in decision-making process. For example, freelancing can be a perfect choice of someone who can manage his timetable to accomplish his targets with his own pace. However, other persons cannot keep working because there is no one monitor their work and progress. Furthermore, people should be accountable to any personal decisions made because making these decision require mature people.

            The journal presented may serve as a powerful and efficacious intervention for clients with career concerns. In the countrys context, we only have limited instruments in determining the career inclinations of the students. Some tests fail to identify the distinctive characteristics or other personal factors of students who are, for instance, evaluated to be good in STEM strand. Both students may have been assessed to be ideal for engineering courses but it is important to determine the underlying intrinsic or extrinsic motivations of each student in pursuing such career. If properly identified, counselors can start mapping out possible career paths for each individual.

            This can also be applicable in filling up positions in any workplace. For example, could someone who starts as a receptionist but shows aptitude with financials train as a bookkeeper or seek additional education to ultimately become the accountant or even CPA within a company?

            With the instrument used in the study, the utility of career development strivings strategy can be adopted by educational institutions as an approach in assessing students goals in the career decision-making process, the approach that can assist many students around the world. With the results of the study, one can easily identify individual differences that are related to the students perceived specific goals. This would greatly help counselors in determining individual differences between and among students pursuing the same career which are otherwise not obvious. Furthermore, these data can be used as guidelines for the job descriptions for any position.

            How do we expect young people to dream if they dont know what they can dream about? How can we give career evaluation and suggestion if we cannot tell what one really wants from the rest of the students?

These can only be answered if we are using the right tool and assessment approaches which will pave way for various opportunities for career exploration for young people to have broader exposure to the working world, they will one day enter. It helps them connect the dots between school and career in ways that keep them motivated to graduate with the skills they will need for the future. In addition, parents have to leave them choose their preferable tracks without any bias to certain career, as engineers always tend to see their children engineers too.

            After determining this pertinent information from the students, the guidance personnel can plan and create for a better and more specific support system for a systematic career development process. This would eventually help students establish specific goals for getting more information about Senior High School and college education and their future careers; help them spend time reviewing students interest inventory results; and promote  creative  and  informed  career exploration  through  the  use  of  structured programs or activities. Moreover, internships for high-school students can be very beneficial for them to experience several careers effectively.


AMY, Nice summary of the study. it sounds like this instrument something the career counselor will use to assist the client/student with career exploration. Did they state that they would be following up with interventions to test the utility of different strategies based on the scores from the tool?  Also, it sounds like they were assessing, at least in part, Social Cognitive Theory with the self-efficacy and outcome expectations. Did they mention if the instrument was based on any theories?



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