Career Counseling: Contemporary Topics in Vocational Psychology

Career Counseling: Contemporary Topics in Vocational Psychology

Career Counseling: Contemporary Topics in Vocational Psychology

Career Counseling: Contemporary Topics in Vocational Psychology


Career Counseling aims to link the past and the present, and to look to the future for significant developments in this critical field. Seven current methods are examined in detail:

• the Trait-and-Factor approach

• the Person-Centered approach

• the Psychodynamic approach

• the Developmental approach

• the Social Learning approach

• the Social Psychological approach

• Computer Assisted Career Counseling

Written to inform practicing vocational counselors and students about the practical and applied aspects of various counseling approaches, this book will help them maintain a data-based objectivity.


The original approach to formal vocational counseling is generally traced back to Frank Parsons (1909). Parsons became interested in unemployed school leavers and developed a counseling service in the Boston Civic House, a social settlement. In 1909 he published a book (Choosing a Vocation) in which he structured the three steps of vocational counseling as he viewed them in practice: self-analysis, occupational analysis, and true reasoning or counseling to relate personal and occupational information. Since Parsons' original contribution, a variety of approaches to career counseling have been developed representing a rich range of intellectual perspectives. Differential, developmental, social learning, cognitive, sociological, economic, and mathematical models have all been used. It is the purpose of this volume to link the past and the present and look to the future in reviewing contemporary approaches to career counseling. Thus, this book is for vocational counselors practicing in the field. We hope it will assist their awareness of the practical and applied aspects of the approaches to career counseling and help them maintain a databased objectivity about the approaches.

The book presents seven contemporary approaches to career counseling: trait-and-factor approach, person-centered approach, psychodynamic approach, developmental approach, social learning approach, social psychological approach, and computer-assisted career counseling. The final chapter attempts to summarize, and to some extent, integrate the different approaches to career counseling.

The chapter on the trait-and-factor approach to career counseling by Rounds and Tracey makes the point that trait-and-factor counseling is . . .

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