Career Development Interventions in the 21st Century

Career Development Interventions in the 21st Century
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  • ISBN-13: 9780131137813
  • ISBN: 0131137816
  • Edition: 2
  • Publication Date: 2004
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall


Niles, Spencer G., Harris-Bowlsbey, JoAnn


We have taught career courses to students in numerous universities in the Uhited States, as well as in Canada, Japan, Denmark, Portugal, England, and Spain, to mention just a few. Wherever students are interested in learning about career development theory and practice, we are eager to go! In each instance, however, we not only teach students about career development interventions but students also teach us. The idea for this book began in response to student requests (pleas) for a career development textbook that was readable, useful, and interesting. These are high, but reasonable, expectations. These expectations served as our guiding principles as we composed the chapters of this book. To make the book more readable, most chapters include case studies. Our goal is to help readers connect chapter content with the lives of people represented in the cases. Although the cases are, for the most part, fictional, they reflect the career concerns of people with whom we have worked as career counselors in schools, in community settings, and in higher education. Thus, we are indebted to our clients, in addition to our students, for teaching us about the career development process. We seek to share these experiences with the readers of this book. Another goal is to convey to our readers the deep respect and long-term commitment we have for career development theory and practice. We emphasize this goal in Chapter 1. As we note in the book, there are few things more personal than a career choice, and we were cognizant of this fact as we wrote each chapter. Making career decisions involves deciding how we will spend one of the most precious commodities we have--our time on Earth. We realize that these decisions are often very difficult and overwhelming. Thus, we draw upon the work of our colleagues in the field to present readers with state-of-the-art career theory and practice. However, the current situation evolved from the past contributions of many leaders in the field. We acknowledge their important foundational contributions in Chapter 1. Although we cover a wide variety of theoretical perspectives in the book (especially in Chapters 2 and 3), we emphasize that careers develop over time. A decision point in one's career development is just that, a point in time at which one makes decisions based on previous and current career development experiences. Although knowing how to help people at these important points in their career development is crucial, career practitioners can also intervene proactively in the lives of children, adolescents, and adults in ways that facilitate positive career development prior to career crises occurring. Being able to provide assistance in both instances is critical. We are especially concerned that career development theory and practice be inclusive. Constructing culturally inclusive career development interventions should be standard practice within the field. Unfortunately, this has not been the case. In part because of their historical context, career theories and practices focused primarily on the career experiences of European American middle-class males. Although we devote a chapter to diverse populations (Chapter 4), throughout the book we also address the need for inclusive career interventions. Our cases also tend to highlight the career experiences of clients from diverse backgrounds. We think both approaches (i.e., having a single chapter devoted to the topic and infusing diversity throughout the book) are needed to begin to more adequately address the career development needs of all people. The need to provide clients with culturally sensitive career interventions provides an important foundation for discussing career counseling interventions in Chapter 8 and career assessment approaches in Chapter 5. The career counseling process and outcomes information provided here reflects the most recent work within the field. We also provide career informatNiles, Spencer G. is the author of 'Career Development Interventions in the 21st Century', published 2004 under ISBN 9780131137813 and ISBN 0131137816.

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