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An exploration of literature


Gottfredson: Stages of Development of young people

Ages 3-5 Orientation to Size and Power Ages 6-8 Orientation to sex roles: Career ideas influenced by ideas of sex roles Ages 9-13 Affected by Abstract ideas of Social Class. At this point, prestige becomes an important factor in career choice floors and ceilings for their aspirations. Ages 14+ young people become more introspective, greater self consciousness concern about what others think.

Gottfredson (Continued)

Most people share a cognitive map of occupations (based on Hollands research) This is based along dimensions of prestige and sex type

vocational choice begins a process of circumscription, of eliminating occupational alternatives that conflict with ones self concept

The formation of self concept and occupational preferences begins early in life and develops: although individuals develop at different rates

Circumscription and Compromise


Concept Emphasises the important part that sex roles and prestige play in making choices Occupational Preferences Perceived accessibility of occupations

Gottfredsons Circumscription and Compromise

Circumscription: progressive elimination of unacceptable alternatives due to gender bias and prestige issues Compromise: need to accept less attractive options due to environmental factors: however - sex type bias most resistant to change.

theory.focuses on how young people gradually come to recognise and deal with the array of vocational choices their society provides.


Coogan, PA and Chen, CP. (2007)

Barriers to womens career development

Women face a number of barriers to their career development that both complicate and limit their career choices and advancement (p.192) Early gender roles Employment inequalities Family responsibilities

Early Gender Role Orientation

Girls as homemakers, nurturers Girls do not place the same emphasis on pursuing a successful career Girls limit themselves to stereotypically female jobs

Early Gender Roles

many women are exposed to pervasive messages that a womans life should revolve around taking care of others and that their career plans are some how superimposed on this primary obligation.

Employment Inequalities

Lack of mentorship Sexual harassment


Women tend to go into less well paid jobs They often take time out for child rearing The resulting discrimination affects career choice, job entry, job promotion and satisfaction

Sexual Harassment

sexual harassment translates systematic attitudes about gender based power and womens appropriate roles into interpersonally mediated barriers to career satisfaction and personal well being.

Family Responsibilities

Women experience more employment interruptions Women experience reduced advancement opportunities in their vocational life Not serious about work?

Theoretical Perspectives


role of gender very often becomes the most dominant factor in deciding ones career direction concept; Life roles; Recycle though career development stages


Theoretical Perspectives

Social Cognitive Career Theory (SCCT) Agency

womens career development is especially affected and complicated by a range of dynamic interactions between social, personal, and other related contexts

Suggestions for practice

Sensitivity, knowledge and skill Knowledge based n research and scholarship Awareness of own bias Be challenging of misconceptions Encouraging development of political awareness

Discuss this quote.

The role of the practitioner is to: help the client become a more cognisant, proactive and skilful agent who masters her career choice and direction.

you agree? Is the author demonstrating any sense of bias?


Catherine Hakim (2007)

Hakims viewpoint

men will retain their dominance in the labour market, politics and other competitive activities because only a minority of women are prepared to prioritise their jobs in the same way as men. Do you agree?

3 types of career

Home centred Work centred Adaptive


you agree? What are the implication for guidance? How could you use this knowledge to inform career guidance for school pupils?

Occupational Dreams

Coogan and Chen claim that men focus on career in their late teens whilst women have more domestic aspirations. Career considerations are more likely to be a focus for young women a decade later, between the ages of 28-33 Please discuss if this is your experience. And consider if the are wrong why that might be.


Coogan, PA . Chen, CP. (2007)Career development and counselling for women: Connecting theories to practice, Counselling Psychology Quarterly, 20:2, 191-204 Gottfredson, L. (2004) Using Gottfredsons Theory of Circumscription and Compromise in Careers Guidance and Counselling Hakim, C. (2007) Women, Careers and work life preferences British Journal of Guidance and Counselling 34:3, 279-294