Career-choice readiness in adolescence: Developmental trajectories and individual differences

Publikation: Beiträge in ZeitschriftenZeitschriftenaufsätzeForschungbegutachtet


Developing career-choice readiness is an important task in adolescence, but current theory and research has provided a rather static view of the phenomenon. The present study investigated the development of career-choice readiness among a group of 325 Swiss students assessed four times every 5. months from seventh through eighth grade. A variable-centered approach applying latent curve modeling showed not only a linear increase of readiness over time but also significant inter-individual differences in the level and development of readiness. Higher levels were predicted by more self-esteem and generalized self-efficacy and fewer perceived barriers while increase in readiness was predicted by increase in occupational information. A person-centered approach applying latent class-growth analysis identified four distinct developmental trajectories: high-increasing (42%), high-decreasing (5%), moderate-increasing (42%), and constantly low (11%). Students with different trajectories showed significant differences in core self-evaluations, occupational knowledge, and barriers. The results suggest that environmental demands promote a developmental trend in readiness development that overrules individual differences for the majority of students. Individual differences affect the level of readiness to a greater extent than the process of its development. Career information seems pivotal for readiness increase.

ZeitschriftJournal of Vocational Behavior
Seiten (von - bis)340-348
Anzahl der Seiten9
PublikationsstatusErschienen - 10.2011