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A Test of the Social Cognitive Career Theory to Predict Career Interests and Goal Setting among Multi-Ethnic, Low SES Adjudicated Adolescents

Posted on:2011-02-01Degree:Ph.DType:Dissertation
University:University of MinnesotaCandidate:Herrmann, Michelle A. K. CFull Text:PDF
Evidence suggests that we need career development interventions that are better than those that are currently being offered to adjudicated adolescents. In an effort to understand how to help these young people in their career development, I conducted a study based on Social Cognitive Career Theory (SCCT; Lent, Brown, & Hackett, 1994, 2000), which is used to describe adolescent career development. In this theory, barriers and supports in adolescents' environments that are mediated through career self-efficacy and outcome expectations are proposed to predict career interests and goals (goal setting). Barriers and supports were derived through those proposed in the Integrative Contextual Model of Career Development (ICM; Lapan, 2004).;Thus, the primary purpose of this study was to investigate how contextual factors (e.g., perceived educational and career barriers, parents' emotional and instrumental support) predict career self-efficacy and outcome expectations, which in turn predict magnitude of career interests, and along with interests predict career goal setting. Participants were 350, 9th through 12th grade multiethnic adjudicated adolescents from a large suburban county juvenile detention center in the Midwestern United States. Participants completed a demographic questionnaire and five instruments measuring the study variables.;Results of Stepwise Multiple Regression indicated that proactivity, parents' emotional support, and academic achievement were predictive of career self-efficacy. Proactivity, parents' instrumental support, perceptions of barriers, and parents' verbal encouragement were predictive of career outcome expectations. Self-efficacy and outcome expectations were predictive of magnitude of interests, and self-efficacy, outcome expectations and interests were predictive of career goal setting. Contrary to findings among the general populations of adolescents and young adults wherein efficacy was found to be a stronger predictor of interests than outcome expectations, among adjudicated adolescents, outcome expectations was the stronger predictor. Interpretation of these results will be framed using Holland's Theory of Vocational Personalities and Work Environments (Holland, 1997), Social Learning Theory, (Bandura, 1977), SCCT (Lent et al., 1994, 2000), ICM (Lapan, 2004), and Attachment Theory (Ainsworth 1989, Ainsworth, Blehar, Walters, Wall, 1978, Bowlby, 1973, 1982, 1988).
Keywords/Search Tags:Career, Theory, Goal setting, Adjudicated, Interests, Outcome expectations, Among, Social
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