Annual Review: Vocational Behavior and Career Development-1994

By Walsh, W. Bruce; Srsic, Colby | Career Development Quarterly, December 1995 | Go to article overview

Annual Review: Vocational Behavior and Career Development-1994


Walsh, W. Bruce, Srsic, Colby, Career Development Quarterly


This review of the 1994 literature is representative rather than exhaustive, and choices of articles to review were influenced by what we believe to be important. The sheer number of articles to review is enormous, and space limitations preclude a totally comprehensive review. We have attempted to include methodologically sound articles, those that are empirically based and published in referenced journals. We review articles in each area and comment briefly on the findings after each major section if it seems appropriate. Methodological comments are not made about individual studies. Thus, this review primarily emphasizes empirical work in the field, but with a focus on the use of the research in the practice of career counseling.

The year 1994 produced considerable research in the field of vocational psychology and career development. Some of the more traditional variables continued to receive attention, including Holland's 1992 theory, vocational assesement, and individual differences. In addition, gender and women's issues continued to generate significant amounts of research.

Of particular note in 1994 was the passing of Professor Donald E. Super on June 21, 1994. His memory was honored by a recounting of his accomplishments and celebration of his contributions in a Festschrift edited by Savickas (a) for a special issue of The Career Development Quarterly. The Festschrift began with a biography by Savickas (b) that concentrated on Super's career development. The following eight articles highlighted the wide range of his conceptual and empirical contributions to vocational psychology and career development. The first three articles focused on constructs that Super used to enrich the trait and factor model and methods for vocational guidance: Zytowski (a) on work values, Betz on self-concept, and Jepsen on thematic exploration. The next set of three articles emphasized constructs that Super used to refocus the field on career development and career counseling: Savickas (c) on career development, Phillips and Blustein on career choice readiness, and Goodman on career adaptability. The final two pieces described constructs that Super used to elaborate multiple roles that each culture expects an individual to enact: Cook on role salience and Fouad and Arbona on cultural context. The Festschrift concluded with a bibliography of Super's publications from 1939 through 1994.

Super retired from Columbia State Teachers College, Columbia University, New York, in 1975, at the age of 65. From 1965 to 1974, he had directed the Division of Psychology and Education and for 5 of those years (1970 to 1974) he also chaired the Department of Psychology. From 1975 until his death, Super held the rank of professor emeritus at Columbia State Teachers College. After his retirement, Super's colleagues recognized, with many major awards, his numerous contributions to vocational psychology and career intervention. Two ofthe awards presented to him are the Division of Counseling Psychology's Leona Tyler Award (1980) and the American Psychological Association's Distinguished Scientific Award for Contributions to the Applications of Psychology (1983).

Three important books appeared on the scene in 1994. Convergence in Career Development Theories: Implications for Science and Practice, edited by Savickas and Lent and inspired by the monumental career conference held in 1992 at Michigan State University, brought together some of the most prominent figures in the field of vocational psychology. The edited volume explored the first professionwide debate on the issue of converging career choice and development theories fom the perspectives both of scientists and of practitioners. The book is divided into four parts. In the first part, the five major career development theorists (Borden, Dawis, Holland, Krumboltz, and Super) considered how their approaches converge with, or could be made to bridge, other career theories. In the second part, career psychology researchers discussed how particular constructs, such as identity and cultural variables, could be used as linchpins for theory and research unification. …

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