Empirical research on professional activity began in the early years of the XX century. Before the emergence of the educational and vocational guidance movement in the U.S., the family was the main institution, which had a decisive influence on career choice. The First World War has contributed to the expansion of employment opportunities and the variety of operating conditions, and has created an urgent need for effective procedures for recruitment, screening, training, classification, and evaluation of employees. The response to this need was the emergence of industrial psychologists and psychometrician. Their main efforts were directed to study the behavior of workers and the interaction between employees and management. The Great Depression resulted in the need to study the unemployed as a sociological phenomenon and stimulated the development of methods for assessing marginal occupational groups, such as waiters, taxi drivers, and railway workers.
During the Second World War, scientific and economic strength of the country grew rapidly, which favored the research on professional activity and particular professions. Relationship of individuals to society was determined through social roles and professional occupation.
Offering different interpretations of the research results, psychologists have created different theories to explain the factors influencing career choice.
Researchers D. E. Super, JL Holland, and A. Rowe confirmed that personality traits serve as a factor in admitting that a career is an environment reflecting the differences between individuals and their interests. On the other hand, their studies have contributed to the further development of the life cycle concept. The model of compliance between the individual and the environment postulates that career choice is explained by individual motivation. The concepts of the initial, probationary, and stable periods of working life have been introduced. The initial period belonged to jobs and positions at the time of formal education, while the probationary period meant job changes, established or imposed by the employer in a three-year (or less) period, and the stable period, which implied three years or longer period.
Daniel J. Levinson, and other scholars have argued that the stages of working life are part of the process of biological and social maturity, so they are pre-programmed, although influenced by social forces.
The study, which became a classic, has shown that certain personality factors and pressure situation affect the way a person will change his job or will stubbornly hold on to the one he initially started with.
To write a good research proposal on career choice, it is helpful to use free sample research paper topics on the issue, which will teach you that the researchers identified two main factors influencing career choice, one of which depends on salary and other on job. You may easily find these free samples and examples on the Web.
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