In career counseling, it is imperative to understand the theories associated within the field. This is because the theories lay down the foundation that further concepts, strategies, and techniques used throughout the field are built upon. Even though some theories may be criticized and considered useless or obsolete over time, they still play a role in shaping the overall development of the field. The procedures and resources that are used in career counseling today are prominent because of the research and development of the theories in the field.
One of the popular theories in career counseling is John Holland’s modal personal style.
The premise of the theory is that people choose careers that complement their personalities and skills, values, and their background. When people work in careers that are consistent with their personality and skill set, they tend to feel more fulfilled than others whose work environments are inconsistent with their skills and abilities. This is why self-discovery is important, so that you can realize and understand what type of person you are and what your true skills and abilities are.
According to Holland, there are six types of working environments and six personality styles to coincide with the working environments. He created a coded system called modal personal styles and occupational environments that looks like this: R (realistic occupation), I (investigative), A (artistic), S (social), E (enterprising), and C (conventional) (Zunker 2012, 28). These styles are represented along a hexagonal model. The letters that are next to each other such as R and I are the styles that are most similar, whereas the letters across from each other, such as C and A a...
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...s led to positive or negative experiences (Zunker 2012, 34). Based on these four factors it is clear that Krumboltz believes that learning occurs through both observation and through direct experiences. They both also have an effect on who you become as a whole.
In the field of career counseling to understand that the theories that have been developed through the years have been very influential in the way the field has evolved. How we assess, understand, and assist clients is directly linked to the research that has been conducted and the data that has been collected. As more research is done and more theories, we further continue to shape and mold the field of career counseling.
Zunker, V.G. (2012). Theories of Career Development. Career counseling: A holistic approach (8th ed., pp. 27-35). Belmont, CA.: Brooks/Cole Cengage Learning.
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