Group Title: relationship of group career counseling and computer-assisted career guidance
Title: The relationship of group career counseling and computer-assisted career guidance
Full Citation
Permanent Link:
 Material Information
Title: The relationship of group career counseling and computer-assisted career guidance to the career maturity of community college students
Physical Description: xii, 152 leaves : ; 28cm.
Language: English
Creator: Pyle, K. Richard, 1939-
Publication Date: 1976
Copyright Date: 1976
Subject: Counseling in higher education   ( lcsh )
Vocational guidance   ( lcsh )
Counselor Education thesis Ph. D
Dissertations, Academic -- Counselor Education -- UF
Genre: bibliography   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Thesis: Thesis--University of Florida.
Bibliography: Bibliography: leaves 139-149.
Statement of Responsibility: by K. Richard Pyle.
General Note: Typescript.
General Note: Vita.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00098130
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: alephbibnum - 000163746
oclc - 02762676
notis - AAT0103

Full Text





To My Wide, Betty

Foa the SuAtenance PLovided
By YouV Faith and Love


The opportunity to engage in and complete this

research would not have been possible without the assis-

tance of a number of Individuals. My sincere thanks is

expressed to:

Dr. Robert 0. Stripling, my chairman, who helped

me to realize years ago that this was possible, and whose

unwavering support, patience and wisdom throughout my

doctoral studies have been a continual Inspiration.

The other members of my supervisory committee,

Dr. John--ickens and Dr. E. L. Tolbert, for their helpful

suggestions and support of my efforts, and to Or. Richard

Johnson who served on my committee until the acceptance

of a new position necessitated his withdrawal.

My Santa Fe Community College friends and col-

leagues, Dr. Robert Wheless and Mr. George Huber, for their

administrative and emotional support; Miss St. Elmo Cherry

for making her BE 100 classes available and serving as an

ACADEM group leader; Mr. William Noffsinger for his help

with the data analysis, and Mrs. Sherry Bookman for aiding

in the SIGI discussions.

My daughter, Kimberly, and son, Matthew, for the

Joy and love they have provided me; my mother-in-law and

father-in-law for their support and encouragement; my

mother and father for the strength and pride they have

provided me through the meaning of their lives; and my

wife, Betty, to whom this dissertation Is dedicated.







Rationale and Purpose of the Study .........
Definitions of Terms Used In the Study


Career Maturity ............................
Origin and Definition ..................
Indices of Career Maturity ............
Measurement of Career Maturity
Group Career Counseling
The Need ...............................
Definition .............................
Decision-Making ........................
Guidelines and Models of Group
Career Counseling ....................
Research on Group Career Counseling
Comparative studies with In-
dividual counseling ..............
Comparative studies with other
methodologies ...................
Career Information-seeking
behavior .........................
Career maturity, self-concept,
and attitude ....................
Work values, realism, self-
Summary ................................


The Awareness of Career Decision-Making 33
Computer-Assisted Guidance .................. 37
Types of Computer-Based Guidance
Programs ............................... 40
Research on Computer Guidance
Programs ............................... 43
The System of Interactive Guidance
and Information ........................... 46
Research on the System of Interactive
Guidance and Information 50
The Career Maturity Inventory 53
The CMI Attitude Scale ...................... 54
Reliability and Validity of the Career
Maturity Inventory Attitude Scale ......... 55
Research Using the Attitude Scale for
Assessment ................................ 57
Summary of the Literature 58


Research Questions 61
Population .................................. 62
Selection of Subjects ....................... 63
Awareness of Career Decision-Making
Procedures ................................ 63
System of Interactive Guidance
and Information Procedures 65
ControlGroup Procedures 68
The Research Design 68
Analysis of the Data ........................ 69
Assumptions of the Study 71


Introduction ................................ 73
Results of Questions 1, 2, 3, and 4 ......... 73
Discussion of the Results to Questions 1, 2,
3. and 4 .................................. 73
Results of Question 5 ....................... 82
Discussion of the Results to Question 5 100


Introduction 103
Conclusions 104
Implications 105
Limitations ................................. 107
Suggestions for Further Research ............ 107










Table Page

1 Analysis of Covarlance of Final Career
Maturity Attitude Scores of SIGI,
ACADEM and Control Groups 75
2 Adjusted Posttest Mean Scores of Career
Maturity of Groups (A), and Aposteriori
Comparisons with Schetfes Method (8) 76

3 Analysis of Variance of Sex Differences
Within Groups 77
4 Analysis of Variance of Decidedness
Differences Within Groups 79
5 Analysis of Variance of Age Differences
Within Groups 80

6 Student Reactions to SIGI (S) or to ACADEM
(A). First Eight Statements-Five Cate-
gories 85

7 Student Reactions to SIGI (5) or to ACADEM
(A). First Eight Statements-Three
Categories 86
8 Student Reactions to the Objectives of
SIGI-Five Categories 91

9 Student Reactions to the Objectives of
SIGI-Three Categories 92

10 Student Reactions to the Objectives of
ACADEM-Five Categories 95
11 Student Reactions to the Objectives of
ACAOEM-Three Categories 96


Table Page

12 Student Reaction to the Objectives of
SIGI and ACADEM-Compared 99
13 Student Reaction to Assistance of In-
Class Discussion of SIGI-Statement
14 101

Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate Council
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy


K Richard Pyle

March, 1976

Chairman: Robert 0. Stripling
Major Department: Counselor Education

Over the past few years there has been, among

educators, a growing realization of the need to assist

students more effectively in their career development.

As a consequence, a number of new techniques have emerged

to aid counselors with their career development objectives.

Two Innovative programs designed to facilitate career de-
velopment of college students are the System of Interactive

Guidance and Information (SIGI). a computer program de-
veloped by the Educational Testing Service, and the Aware-
ness of Career Decision Making (ACADEM), a group counseling
activity developed by Dr. Richard H. Johnson, presently at
Southern Illinois University.
One method of determining the value of these ac-

tivities was to study the relationship each had to any change
in career maturity. Researchers have relied on career

maturity Indices as a measure of one's relative career

development, and several Investigators have employed

Crites' Career Maturity Inventory (CMI) to study the

effects of various guidance programs on the career ma-

turity of participants. A second method of assessing the

merit of each activity was to ask students involved to

evaluate the experience, indicating their perceptions and

attitudes, after completing the program.

A total of 97 communitycollege students enrolled

innine sections of a behavioral science course were sub-

jects for the investigation. Three sections completed the

SIGI activity, three sections completed the ACADEM activity,

and three sections served as a common control group. The

SIGI or ACADEM activities were the career units in the

participating behavioral science courses. The control

group did not have a career unit until after the posttest

was administered. During the three weeks the students

participated in the SIGI program, there were class dis-

cussions where the counselor/instructor used the Counselor's

Handbook for SIGI as a guide.

The research questions which the study sought to

answer were: (1) What is the relationship between students'

scores on the CMI Attitude Scale and participation in the

SIGI or ACADEM program? (2) What relationship do the

variables of age, sex and decision on an occupation have to


career maturity scores of students who have participated

in the SIGI or ACADEM programs? (3) What are the reac-

tions of students to their experience with SIGI or ACADEM?

It was found that the SIGI program does appear to

relate significantly to students' career maturity attitude

scores while the ACADEM program does not. The variables

of sex, age, and decision on an occupation do not relate

to career maturity attitudes, as measured by the CMI Attitude

Scale. The results of a posttest questionnaire indicated

that both SIGI and ACADEM students perceived their ex-

perience positively.

The facts that the investigator took an active role

in the study and that only one dimension of the career

maturity construct was measured were discussed as possible

limitations of the study. The findings suggest that further

research on SIGI and ACAOEM is warranted. In particular,

it would be interesting to study how the programs relate

to outcome variables other than career maturity. Also,

research should be undertaken investigating what effects

the programs would have on students who participate as a

result of their own interest rather than as a class re-




Career education has emerged over the past decade

as a major movement influencing the guidance and counseling

profession. Two innovative techniques which have been

developed for use in career education are group career

counseling and computer assisted guidance in career ex-

ploration. Student personnel administrators and counselors

are faced with decisions about the effectiveness of the

techniques as well as the best ways to use them in career

guidance services.

Group counseling generally has been accepted by

counselors as an appropriate intervention technique for

facilitating client growth. Counselors have used this

technique in aiding underachievers, developing greater

self and other awareness, and assisting students in their

career development. Over the past few years several group

career counseling activities have developed which are

structured in such a manner that they can be replicated.

The Awareness of Career Decision-Making (ACADEM) (Johnson.

1973) is one of these. In this activity, the counselor

follows a programmed text as a guide in advancing students

from one phase to the next. Students are given tasks which

call for career related thinking and for discussion with

other group members. The group becomes a means of aiding

students to reflect and to gain feedback. Tasks are pre-

sented In a developmental manner so that group process

is taken into consideration.

While there has been almost universal acceptance

of group counseling, many counselors have resisted the use

Of computers as a career guidance technique. Super (1970)

Identified four reasons for such resistance:

The counselor's non-mathematical orien-
tation In juxtaposition to the computer's
2. The computer's accuracy in contrast to
the counselor's fallibility.
3. The possibility that the computer will
diminish the counselor's autonomy in
scheduling his own time.
4. The computer system's apparent determin-
istic character. (Super, 1970, p. 113)

It has been suggested that there are some areas

where the computer can be more effective and efficient than

counselors: (1) printing schedules; (2) providing informa-

tion on jobs, occupations, and colleges; and (3) performing

statistical functions. Consequently, Super (1970) has

stated that counselors should learn to use the computer as

a guidance assistance technique so that they can be freed

to concentrate on other areas of human need.

Recently, a number of computer programs have been

developed which make It possible for the student to Inter-

act with the computer in a way similar to the Interaction
between a student and a counselor. It is the Intent of

these programs to aid the student In arriving at conclu-

sions related to a career (Super. 1970). The student has

direct access to the computer and controls the interaction

through the use of a cathode-ray tube similar to a tele-

vision screen and a computer terminal similar to a type-

writer. By punching keys, the student may ask questions

of the computer, and answers flash on the screen. Similarly,

the computer "asks" the student questions about his values,

Interests, and abilities. Through this Interaction, the

student, theoretically, learns more, not only about the

decision-making process but also about himself and careers,

thus allowing him to Integrate this knowledge in making

educational and life decisions.

One such computer-based program Is the System of

Interactive Guidance and Information (SIGI) developed

by the Educational Testing Service. SIGI is designed to

aid community college students in exploring their career

values, deciding on educational and vocational fields,and

making plans for implementing their decisions.

There are a number of similarities between the

computer programs and the replicable group counseling

activities, mentioned above. Both are structured to

lead the student through a series of systematic tasks and

both have the same goal of aiding students In their career
development. The computer program and the counselor who

is using ACADEH follow a prepared format and do not stray

away from the steps which are built into the techniques.

Finally, both the computer and group counseling have been

encouraged for use because of the time saving potential

for the counselor. The major difference between the two Is

that the computer is based on terminal-interaction while

the group counseling activity is based on human-interaction.

Rationale and Purpose of the Study

With two new career development techniques, SIGI

and ACADEM, at their disposal, student personnel admin-

istrators and counselors are in need of information on

the value of each. The major purpose of this study was to

determine the relationship each technique has to the de-
velopment of career maturity in community college students.

A secondary and related purpose was to assess student
reactions to their experience with SIGI or ACADEM. Such

Information should aid counselors in choosing the activity
which Is most suitable to their career development objec-

tives. Additionally, this study provides counselors with

information on how students might react to the SIGI or

ACADEM experience. The findings of the study also should

aid student personnel administrators in determining cost

effectiveness information for accountability and budget-

ing purposes.

Specifically, this study was designed to provide

answers to the following questions:

1. Does participation in SIGI produce changes in
students' career maturity?

2. Does participation In ACADEM produce changes in
students' career maturity?

3. What are the differences, if any, In career
maturity between students involved in SIGI and
students involved In ACADEM?

4. What relationship do the variables of sex, age, and
decidedness on an occupation have to the develop-
ment of career maturity among students participat-
ing in SIGI or ACADEMY?

5. What are student reactions to the SIGI or ACADEM

Definitions of Terms Used In the Study

For the purpose of this study, the following defi-

nitions were applied:

Career development. The life-long continuous pro-

cess of implementing one's self-concept within the context

of the world of work and society. This process occurs In

stages and is a function of the individual's interest,

attitudes, abilities, values and behavior patterns, plus

characteristics of his environment.

Career maturity. The attained point in a person's
theoretically defined career development as compared to his

peers. This concept was originally referred to as vocational
maturity. The investigator uses the word "career" rather

than "vocational. The only exception to this Is when a

particular statement is being quoted and the word "vocational"

is used.

Group career counseling. The counseling activity

which promotes interaction among two or more participants

and the counselor for the purpose of aiding the participant

in a better and deeper understanding of himself in relation

to the world of work.



This study sought to determine the relationship

of a computer-assisted guidance technique (SIGI) and a

group career counseling technique (ACADEM) to the develop-

ment of career maturity In community college students. In

order to provide a background, the present chapter includes

a review of the literature on (1) career maturity, (2)

group career counseling, (3) the ACADEM group career

counseling program, (4) computer-assisted guidance, and

(5) the SIGI career exploration program. A summary of

the literature Is presented.

Career Maturity

Origin and Definition

Career maturity as a concept and proposed construct
evolved from the staff of Super's Career Pattern Study

(Tolbert, 1974). Super's theory of career development

is based on an Individual's striving to Implement his

self-concept. This process occurs through five developmental

stages: (1) the crystallization stage (ages 14-18),

(2) the specification stage (ages 18-21). (3) the imple-

mentation stage (ages 21-24), (4) the stabilization stage

(ages 25-35), and (5) the consolidation stage (ages 35-

50). Each stage is marked by certain growth and develop-

mental tasks which need to be accomplished before further

growth can occur. Certain attitudes and behaviors are

related to the tasks within each stage. An example of some

of the attitudes and behaviors of the specification stage

are: (1) awareness of need to specify, (2) use of resources

in specification, (3) differentiation of interests and

values. (4) specification of vocational preference, (5)

possession of information concerning the preferred occupa-
tion, and (6) confidence in specific preferences (Super,

Super felt that an individual's rate and progress

in meeting developmental tasks might be an indicator of

his career maturity. He, therefore, defined career ma-

turity as 'the degree of development from exploration to

decline" (Super, 1955, p. 153). Accordingly, Super

assessed career maturity from two frames of reference.
The first is by comparing an individual's actual life stage
and the developmental tasks with which he is involved with

those expected at his particular chronological age. The
closer the relationship between the two, the greater the

individual's career maturity. The second Is studying the

methods one uses in handling vocational tasks with the

methods of others handling the sane tasks. Super, there-

fore, uses as his reference point for defining career

maturity, the individual's age and coping behaviors.

Crites, a former member of the staff of the Career

Pattern Study, criticized Super's definition on the grounds

that a person might be considered mature by one definition

and immature by another. Crites' definition combined the

two frames of reference to give a measure of both degree

and rate of career maturity.

Degree refers to the maturity of an in-
dividual's vocational behavior and that
of the oldest individual in his vocational
life stage. In contrast, rate of voca-
tional development refers to the maturity
of an individual's vocational behavior in
comparison with that of his own age groups.
(Crites, 1961, p. 259)

Crites' definition of career maturity appears to be

the most widely accepted and is the one used for this study.

Other definitions have been posed by various researchers

(Bartlett, 1971; Westbrook & Cunningham, 1970; Norton, 1970).

Indices of Career Maturity

Just as several definitions have been proposed for

career maturity, there also have been several indices which

various researchers have conceptualized as relating to

career maturity. These were identified Initially and dis-

cussed by Super (1955), who specified five major dimensions

of career maturity during adolescence: (1) orientation to

vocational choice, (2) Information and planning, (3) con-

sistency of vocational preferences, (4) crystallization

of traits, and (5) wisdom of vocational preferences. Crites

(1965) elaborated upon the orientation, Information and

crystallization dimensions and proposed that they be studied

further for the purpose of"determining more completely

career choice competencies and career choice attitudes"

(Crites, 1974, p. 27).

Gribbons and Lohnes (1968) developed eight scales

to assess career maturity for career planning: factors in
curriculum choice, factors in occupational choice, interests,

values, independence of choice, verbalized strengths and

weaknesses, accuracy of self-appraisal, and evidence for

self-rating. Westbrook and Parry-Hall (1973) specified six

indices of cognitive career maturity: (1) knowledge of

occupations available in various work fields; (2) ability

to choose most realistic occupations, considering one's

known abilities, Interests and values; (3) knowledge of

work schedules, income, and job location; (4) knowledge of
amount of education required for an occupation; (5) knowledge

of abilities, Interests, and values generally required for
various occupations; and (6) knowledge of duties performed
in a wide range of occupations.

Bartlett (1971) found that individuals with high

career maturity scores were more self-confident, achieve-

ment oriented, forceful, Independent, and less self-

critical In their relationships with others. He indicated

that the implications of these results suggest that if the
counselor is desirous of facilitating the counselee's
career maturity, the counselor should aid with the per-

sonality development, and not just the isolated career
development of the counselee.

Measurement of Career Maturity

The measurement of career maturity has been a

challenge to researchers. Instruments based on the pre-

viously mentioned Indices have been designed by several

vocational specialists, Super (1973), Sheppard (1971),

Forrest (1971), Crites (1965), Gribbons and Lohnes (196B)

and Westbrook and Cunningham (1970). Crites (1974) indi-

cated that special problems occur when any attempt is made

to define operational variables presumed to change systema-
tically over time. "Foremost among these is the problem
of formulating a measurement model which incorporates the
merits of established approaches to test construction yet

circumvents the shortcomings" (Crites, 1974, p. 25).
A career maturity model of four dimensions has
been proposed by Crites (1974): consistency of career

choices, realism of career choice, career choice com-

petencies, and career choice attitudes. The first, con-

sistency of career choice, includes consistency over time

and within levels of occupations. The second, realism,

involves the variables of one's abilities, Interests,

personality and social class. The third, career choice

competencies, Includes problem solving, planning occupa-

tional information, self-appraisal, and goal selection.

The fourth dimension of Crites' model Is career choice

attitudes, composed of the conception, preference, inde-

pendence, orientation, and involvement variables.

Crites' model has provided a frame of reference

for research. It has been used as a guide in the work of

the Career Pattern Study, the Vocational Development

Project, and the Center for Occupational Education In

studies of cognitive career maturity (Crites, 1974).

Super (1969) proposed that once all the variables In the

model had been measured, a career maturity profile could

be constructed which could be used to describe what Crites

(1961) has defined as degree and rate of career develop-

ment. From such a career maturity profile, diagnostic

inferences could be drawn concerning an Individual's prob-

lems In career-decision making.

Even though a substantive model exists for the

measurement of career maturity, there is a psychometric

problem In attaining an accurate measurement. The problem

is one of constructing scales whose items (1) are related

to time and (2) are comparable from one time unit to an-

other. Given these specifications, It would be possible

to establish norms on the Incidence of career mature be-

haviors within and between age and/or grade grouping

(Crites, 1974. p. 29).

Career maturity as a construct is still in the de-

velopmental stages. The problems which have been mentioned

are being investigated, but more study is needed In defin-

ing the career maturity construct and In developing vali-

dated instruments for measurement (Crites, 1971; Westbrook

& Cunningham, 1970).

Group Career Counseling

The Need

Much has been written over the past few years on

the need for assisting students with career decision-making.

Devine (1974) found that 64% of incoming freshmen at the

University of Florida had not made a definite choice of an

academic major. Similarly, Myers (1972),after analyzing

a number of studies, found that 20% of entering college

freshmen could not express a vocational choice. In a re-

lated study, Astin and Panos (1969) found that of 36,000

college freshmen at 246 institutions, three-fourths

changed their career plans after entering college. Ginn

(1974) found that 30% of Harvard University's class of

1972 had no career plans. Gaymer (1972), after studying

the predicaments, and frustrations of college students who

feel that they must decide "now" what they are going to do

the rest of their lives, recommended that a major role of

thecounselor is to assist students in understanding that

a decision "now" Is just one of many they will make through-

out their lives. In a recent survey of two-year college

students, Wollman (1975) found that 63% were either not at

all satisfied with the way they had planned their occupa-

tional choice or were fairly satisfied but felt they still

needed some planning. Sixty-eight percent reported that

they would participate in a career guidance program if it
were offered.

Burck (1971) and Korn (1968) studied the nature of

the problems students face in choosing a career. They

concluded that many students in their study experienced

pressure to make decisions but were limited by resources and

opportunities available. Specifically, individuals are con-
fronted with a large number of choices but little experience

in the world of work and little knowledge of occupations.
The ongoing nature of career decision-making and

the importance of developing decision-making skills seem

particularly relevant for the future. Toffler (1970) has

outlined the problems of "future shock" and the need for

the individual to be capable of handling a greater number
of decisions within a shorter span of time. Recent writings

on career development have emphasized the concept of life

development rather than career development (Gysbers &

Moore, 1975). The emphasis here is that it is time to

go beyond the work-oriented barrier which is Inherent in

some of the current definitions of career development and

to focus on all aspects of an individual's life (1975, p.

648). Since the individual is involved throughout life in

a process nf decision-making and new learning, the focus

should be on assisting in decision-making and learning how

to learn,


Nahler's (1969) definitionof group counseling em-

phasizes these key points: (1) problems with developmental

tasks are the members' main concerns, (2) group interaction
is the process for achieving goals. (3) climate within the

group can be such as to permit the lowering of defenses

so that feelings can be revealed and explored, and (4)

self-understanding and self-acceptance are the goals.

Tolbert (1974) Indicated some modification in group career

counseling as opposed to group counseling. He listed the

following assumptions as essential elements of group career

counseling: (1) career planning and decision-making re-

quire input about occupations; (2) accurate data about

the self, i.e., about aptitudes, preferences, achievements,

and values, are needed; and (3) the process offers oppor-

tunities to explore personal meaning, identify and examine

subjective aspects of the self, get feedback from others, and

try on roles (Tolbert, 1974, p. 179).

A synthesis of group counseling and group career

counseling seems to emphasize an environment of acceptance

and opennesswhere individuals have the freedom and oppor-

tunity to try out and integrate cognitive information

about themselves and the world of work. Within this en-

vironment, decision-making skills are practiced and de-

veloped so that the actual implementation of decisions can

take place.


The learning of decision-making skills is considered

by most of the theorists in career counseling as a major

ingredient in career group counseling (Tiedeman, 1975).

Group techniques that combine learning and decision-making

concepts have been shown to stimulate occupational

information-seeking behavior (Krumboltz & Thoreson,

1964). Gelatt, Varenhorst, and Carey (1972) emphasized a

decision-making strategy built around the following


1. Purpose. The counselee needs to make
a decision. He has at least two
2. Information. Information about the
options is identified or obtained.
3. Possibilities. All of the possible
courses of action are identified.
4. Results possible. Possible conse-
quences of each alternative are ex-
5. Results probable. The likelihood of
each consequence is predicted.
6. Values. The personal desirability of
each consequence is assessed.
7. Decision. A choice is made. It may
be terminal or Investigatory.
8. Feedback and Evaluation. The counselee
judges the suitability of his decision
and the counselor evaluates the ef-
fectiveness of his help. (1974, p.

A number of career group counseling programs utilize

decision-making concepts to facilitate career development

and improve decision-making (Hansen, 1970; Chick, 1970;

Martin, 1970). The emphasis is on the teaching of decision-

making skills as opposed to the making of an immediate

decision (Harris-Bowlsbey, 1975).

Guidelines and Models of Group Career Counseling

Tolbert (1974) indicated a series of steps for con-

ducting a group career counseling session which incorporated

decision-making skill development. He emphasized that

structure should be present and the counselor should have

a specific plan for each session. Acceptance, positive

regard, and understanding should characterize the climate

of the group. Reflection and clarification are common

responses of the counselor. A decision-making orientation

should occur early in the process with an appropriate

decision-making model used as a teaching tool. Also early

in the group process, participants should be provided with

a folder of information from their cumulative record. This

step is useful in explaining the meaning of test scores

and other data. A suggested later activity in the group

process is to have group members pursue career learning

options outside the group. Examples of options are inter-
viewing prospective employers, visiting a possible place
of employment, and collecting information on a particular

career of interest. Feedback, predictions, and plans of
action characterize the last stage of Tolbert's model.

Hewer (1968) developed a group career counseling
program at the University of Minnesota which utilized a

case conference approach in which counselees described
their situations, plans, and difficulties. Other group
members were expected to suggest courses of action, predict

success, estimate satisfactions, and generally serve as
One example of a combination of group counseling
and decision-making is a group career counseling plan,

Vocational Choice Group Counseling, developed by Sprague

and Strong (1970). Nine one-hour weekly meetings are es-

tablished around the following content: (1) Introductions,

purpose of group, and a discussion of vocational problems

and decision-making; (2) discussion of tests and inventory

results; and (3) individual case presentations, discussion,

and interaction. Participants are given work sheets on

decision-making and related literature for study and back-

ground information. Quick decisions are not expected but

some progress toward goals is encouraged.

A group career counseling activity which has been

utilized in a number of schools and colleges over the past

three years is the Vocational Exploration Group (VEG)

(Daane, 1971). This activity is a structured process which

seeks to facilitate exploration of both world-of-work and

self within a small group context (four to six members).

The experience is designed to "free up" creative thinking,

increase personal motivation,and widen the participants'

pool of occupational awareness. The teaching of decision-

making is not a stated objective of the VEG.

Research on Group Career Counseling

Comparative studies with individual counseling.

There have been a number of studies which have compared

group career counseling with individual career counseling.

Bilovsky (1953) found that there were no significant dif-

ferences between Individual and group counseling in In-

creasing realism of vocational goals among groups of

students In a senior high school. For a population limited

to college students of one sex, Hoyt (1955) concluded that

career guidance, by either the individual or group method,

is effective in producing positive changes on relevant

criteria. He further concluded that there were no differ-

ences between the two methods In working with career-

undecided students. According to the criteria adopted by

Hoyt, effective outcomes were attained by both group pro-

cedures and by the more traditional individual approach.

In a research study similar to Hoyt's (1955), Hewer (1968)

found no significant difference in accomplishment between

individual and group counseling.

Wright (1963) found very few postcounseling dif-

ferences between individual counseling and group counsel-

ing in test interpretation interviews. Similarly, In a

study of three methods of test interpretation, Folds and

Gazda (1966) found that although individual counseling

was more satisfying to the client, there was, again, no

difference in effectiveness between individual and group


Krumboltz and Thoreson (1964) attempted to produce

information-seeking behavior in 192 eleventh graders through

four treatments applied to both individual and group counsel-

ing. The four treatments were verbal reinforcement coun-

seling, model reinforcement counseling, films and discussion,

and no treatment. No differences were found between in-

dividual and group counseling. However, the results indi-

cated that there were significant differences among the

treatments in producing information-seeking behavior. Model

reinforcement produced the most results followed by verbal

reinforcement, films, and control. Some differences related

to sex were found. Model reinforcement was more effective

than verbal reinforcement counseling for males; both types

were effective for females.

Das (1965) found no significant differences on the

Vocational Development Inventory among a group of ninth

grade potential dropouts experiencing three to five sessions

of Individual counseling, group counseling or no counseling.

Tarrier (1968), in a study of different career counseling

methods, found no difference between small group counseling

and individual counseling.

Hanley (1970) studied individual and group counsel-

ing with high school underachievers. Thirty-six tenth

and eleventh grade underachievers participated either in

individual counseling, six sessions of group counseling,

or no treatment. Group sessions involved counselor inter-

action plus structured discussion concerning values and

attitudes about vocations. Using a pretest, posttest,

and a six weeks delayed posttest design, Hanley found no

significant differences between scores derived from Vo-

cational Development Inventory, and a self-concept scale.

Hanson and Sander (1973) studied differential

effects of Individual and group counseling among eleventh

and twelfth grade boys. The boys were classified as either

"overshooters" or 'undershooters" in realism of vocational

choice. Thirty subjects participated in either an average

of three individual counseling sessions Involving flexible

discussion or four to six group counseling sessions struc-

tured around case study presentations by group members.

"Overshooters" In group counseling and "undershooters" in

Individual counseling showed significantly more realism

than control subjects. In an experimental study of community

college students, Adams (1971) found that a group career

counseling program was more effective than individual coun-

seling in helping entering students maintain higher grade

point averages, gain greater satisfaction with the college

program, achieve greater certainty about completing their

program and In making more appropriate educational-

vocational choices.

Pinkney (1974) investigated not only format (in-

dividual and group) for vocational counseling but also

styles (structured and unstructured). The four treatments

studies were structured groupstructured Individual, non-

structured group, and nonstructured Individual career

counseling. For counseling effectiveness of total change

in expressed concern, clients in the group treatments had

more change in expressed concern than did clients in the

individual treatments, and the structured group treatment

produced more change than did the structured Individual


Many authors recommend group counseling, both for

its economy (Hoppock, 1967; Strang, 1970) and for the op-

portunity for client interaction and growth that a group

can provide (Blocher, 1973; Mathewson, 1970; Strang, 1970;

Traxler, 1970; Varenhorst, 196B; Wrenn, 1973). The group

context can provide for greater peer interaction (Strang.

1970; TraKler, 1970). preparation for further counseling

(Bennett, 1964), greater verbal interaction, a legitimate

practice ground for new behaviors, a variety of models, and

greater opportunities for the counselor to reinforce ap-

propriate career behaviors (Varenhorst. 1968).

Comparative studies with other methodologies. There

have been a few studies which compared group career counsel-

ing with methodologies other than Individual counseling.

Westbrook and Cunningham (1970) investigated three differ-

ent group career counseling methods and were able to draw

some conclusions regarding the assigning of students to a

particular approach. The three methods were (1) test

Interpretation-occupational information, (2) occupational

information-test interpretation, and (3) case study. The

stated objective of each treatment was to aid first semester

college freshmen to reach individually selected goals In

career development. Westbrook concluded that each group

counseling approach has merit for use with college students;

however, the different learning rates related to sex and

time suggested that care should be taken to place subjects

by sex and consider the levels of career development before

determining the type of group placement.

For male college students. Blersdorf (1958) com-

pared a limited group counseling experience with an ex-

panded group experience. The short group experience con-

sisted of test interpretation plus discussion. Significant

differences in favor of the expanded group were found only

in decreased frequency of expressed vocational problems.

Directional differences in favor of the expanded group

were found for certainty of choice, appropriateness of

choice, suitability of choice in terms of appropriateness,

and degree of concern.

In a study designed to promote information-seeking

behavior. Nolan (1974) compared Holland's Self-Directed

Search with group career counseling. The sample used was

90 soon-to-be discharged military personnel who ranged In

age from 21 to 26. The groups met for a total of 90

minutes and followed the structured format of test inter-

pretation (Strong Interest Blank and General Aptitude

Test Battery) and career exploration. Nolan concluded

that group career counseling was more effective than the

Self Directed Search program in promoting frequency of

information-seeking behavior, but that neither treatment

was more effective in promoting a variety of information-

seeking behavior or realism of expressed career choice.

Martin (1970) compared the effect of vocational

training and group counseling on selected career attitudes

of 175 adult women. The attitude scale of the Vocational

Development Inventory was used. At the conclusion of a four

month training period, no significant differences were

found in growth in career maturity. Neither vocational

training nor group counseling caused change in the selected

vocational attitudes within the beginning training period,

although all groups grew in "self-to-vocation congruence."

Group counseling appeared to be most useful as a supportive,

encouraging factor in adjusting to immediate training re-

quirements and in continuing toward career preparation.

Two studies have been reported which compared

programmed instruction with group career counseling.

Lauver (1966) investigated the effects of three treatments

on the values and choices in career planning of tenth and

eleventh graders. The treatments were: (1) a programmed

text, (2) a small group experience focusing on case studies

Illustrating aspects of career planning, and (3) a combin-

ation of the programmed text and group experience. He

found no differences between group or grade levels.

Graff, Danish, and Austin (1972) compared group

counseling, individual counseling, and programmed Instruc-

tion with college freshmen and sophomores on their self-

reported perceptions of degree of assistance. All three

treatments produced significantly higher satisfaction of

perceived assistance than controls. The programmed in-

struction was perceived as more helpful than individual

or group counseling. The authors concluded that "the re-

sults are encouraging enough to suggest that further studies

evaluating automated approaches be conducted in more gener-

alized populations and with other criteria variables' (Graff.

Danish, & Austin, 1972, p. 228). They further suggested

that "much of educational-vocational counseling could be

programmed, automated, or otherwise handled more efficiently

by mechanical or self-help devices" (1972, p. 228).

This review provides support for career group coun-

seling as an effective means of achieving career develop-

ment criteria. However, there is limited Information to

aid a counselor in determining which methods) most assist

clients and at what time and with what people. One of the

major reasons for this difficulty is that research in

group career counseling suffers from many of the short-

comings of group counseling research In general (Gazda,

1971). Lack of treatment replicability, small or extreme

samples, and few multivariate studies are common problems.

However, some studies have shown signs of the efficacy of

group career counseling in facilitating career maturity
in students.

Career information-seeking behavior. Several

studies have focused on the facilitation of career

information-seeking behavior. Behavioral group counsel-

ing techniques have proved to be successful methods.

Aiken (1970) reported a significant relationship be-

tween the counseling procedure used and the change in

career information-seeking responses. The study was con-

cerned with the effects of group reinforcement counseling

on the frequency of career information-seeking behavior

for college freshmen and sophomore males. Group reinforce

ment counseling was defined as any verbal or nonverbal

positive reinforcement of a stated indication that the

clients had sought, were seeking, or planned to seek in-

formation relevant to their major or career. In 1973,

Aiken and Johnston studied the effects of group reinforce-

ment counseling on the frequency of career Information-

seeking behaviors for 94 college freshmen and sophomore

males. Crites' Career Maturity Inventory was used to

identify career maturity-immaturity and Holland's Vo-

cational Preference Inventory was used to Identify

consistent-inconsistent patterns. Both career mature and

immature subjects tended to increase in exploratory be-

havior during treatment.

Krieger (1970) was able to increase career plan-

ning behavior and career planning strategies with mentally

retarded adolescents. The treatment used was group career

counseling with the content based on modeling, plus re-

inforcement counseling.

Studies have provided support for the value of

social modeling In increasing students' information-

seeking behaviors (Thoreson & Krumboltz, 1968; Thoreson,

Krumboltz, & Varenhorst, 1967). Hamilton (1969) dis-

covered that group social modeling plus participation in

group counseling was found to promote significantly more

knowledge of and ability to stimulate career decision-

making than either modeling or participation in group
counseling by themselves. Krumboltz and Schoreder (1965)

studied the effects of both reinforcement and social

modeling tapes with 54 eleventh graders. One group par-

ticipated In group discussion in which the leader verbally

or nonverbally reinforced information-seeking responses of

members. A second group participated In the same type

of group discussion with reinforcement and also listened

to a male model discussing the same topics at the beginning

of the sessions. Both groups showed significantly more

information-seeking behaviors than a control group. Re-

inforcement discussion was more effective than no treat-

ment for females but not for males. Reinforcement plus

taped modeling was more effective for males but not females

In a study using the Vocational Exploration Group

(VEG), Bergland and Lundquist (1974) were not able to in-

crease Information-seeking behaviors. However, the VEG

participants were able to identify significantly more

satisfiers obtainable from jobs and were more proficient

at differentiating among jobs on the basis of (1) interests

and (2) skills used in jobs than students in the control


Career maturity, self-concept, and attitude. There

have been a number of studies where group career counseling

has been used as the intervention to increase career ma-

turity, self-concept and attitudes toward career and jobs.

In a study designed to determine the effects of group coun-

seling on the career maturity of ninth graders, Nichol

(1969) found no significant differences between group coun-

seling and the control group, as measured by a structured

interview and the Attitude Scale of the Career Maturity In-

ventory. The treatment period was eight weeks in duration.

The group sessions were not described.

Jackson (1971) found positive movement but no
significant differences, as measured by the Career Ma-

turity Inventory or a career maturity scale, between a

control group and subjects participating in small group

counseling. The treatment was not defined in this study

beyond "group counseling." Gilliland (1966) was able to

increase career maturity, academic achievement and occupa-

tional aspiration in 14 Negro adolescents participating in
group counseling for 36 weeks. The results were positive

but the time Investment would be a problem for a practic-

ing counselor. In a short-term study (six weeks), Flake,

Roach, and Stenning (1975) were able to significantly In-

crease career maturity attitude scores of tenth grade

students. The researchers concluded that the results In-

dicated that career maturity as a developmental process can

be measured and facilitated through counseling.

Catron (1966) examined changes In self, Ideal self,

and "ordinary person" perceptions of high school students

after treating the students to a College and Career Planning
Group. The treatment took place in small groups and lasted

for 14 one and one-half hour sessions. Fifty-four students
were involved in test interpretation, listening to tapes
and free discussion. Subjects' perceptions of self changed
significantly to more positive images although Ideal-self

and "ordinary person" perceptions were unchanged. Sim-

ilarly, Garrison (1972) reported that career development

counseling over an eight-week period assisted college

students to attain a positive change in their self-concept.

Grubbs (1971) compared 28 ninth grade students

who experienced the VEG to 28 ninth grade students who

visited Job sites, listened to job topic speakers, visited

libraries, and wrote career papers. On an attitude toward-

Job questionnaire, VEG participants made significant gains

from pre-to-posttesting in self-knowledge, self-assess-

ment, and attitudes toward jobs. A classroom activity

group used as a control made no significant gains. The

instrument used was a 15-item self-made questionnaire. In

a study in which the VEG was used with potential dropouts,

Hawxhurst (1973) found no significant changes. The Atti-

tude Scale of the Career Maturity Inventory was the Instru-

ment used in the study.

While the research results are mixed, there is

evidence which supports group career counseling as a means

of increasing career maturity and self-concept in students.

However, because few of the group counseling treatments

were defined, it is difficult to know which approaches and

techniques are of most value.

Work values, realism, and self-exploration. Thomas

(1974) examined the effect of group counseling in changing

work values of college students. The group studied was

divided Into undeclared and declared majors. Results

demonstrated there were no significant differences In the

work values of either group. Davis (1969) Investigated

whether group counseling for career choice reduced the

magnitude of the difference between career aspiration and

career expectation and if there was any relationship be-

tween the number of hours students spent In group counsel-

ing and their realism of career choice. Results Indicated

that realism between career aspirations and career expecta-

tions Increased as the number of hours of group counseling

Increased. Anderson and Binnie (1971) investigated the

effects of a group career counseling program designed

to assist community college students In examining and ex-

ploring their interests and aptitudes as they related to

personal aspirations and plans. Over half of the subjects

indicated a different occupational choice on the posttest

than they had previously chosen on a pretest. There was

also a greater commitment to this new choice. Approximately

25% indicated on the posttest that they planned to com-

plete less education than they had indicated on a pretest

and another fourth revealed that they planned to complete

a higher level of education than they had previously indi-



Group methods to facilitate career development of

students seem to be an accepted component of guidance

practice. Outcome research has produced mixed results

even where the treatment was reasonably similar. Research

studies are diverse in design and group procedures often

are too skimpily described to be replicable in other set-

tings. Gazda (1968) indicated that most studies do not

clearly present the nature of the treatment process. In

her review of group counseling research, Cross (1975)

stressed that a coherent body of knowledge on effective

group career counseling procedures for specific populations

is not available to the practicing counselor. Awareness of

Career Decision-Making (ACADEH) is a replicable group coun-

seling activity designed specifically for college students.

There is no research information on this activity.

Awareness of Career Decision-Making

Awareness of Career Decision-Making (ACADEM) is

a group career counseling program developed by Johnson

(1973). It consists of "a program of activities that

helps participants understand the educational, occupa-

tional, and personal aspects of life so that their decision-

making will be smooth and rewarding" (Johnson,1973, p. 2).

ACADEM was developed around the theory that career

decision-making Is much more than selecting a Job at the

end of a college experience. Decision-making is viewed

as a process that involves educational, occupational, and

personal aspects of life. Specifically, the author states:

Decision making might be compared to a
motion picture which consists of thousands
of single, still pictures put together in
sequence. As the movement of the film is
accelerated through the projector, you
do not see the start and end of each indi-
vidual still picture. Rather, each still
picture blends into the next showing smooth
movement-a flowing process. Indeed, the
whole is greater than the sum of its parts.
Career decision making is much the same.
Thousands of life decisions flow together
showing the movement of a person's life. If
the thousands of decisions are In harmony, the
movement will be smooth and rewarding.
(Johnson, 1973. p. 1)

ACADEM, therefore, is meant to be a teaching tool

and not a crisis-oriented and problem-centered approach.

It is designed to aid students to act upon their curricu-

lum and course development. Counselors using ACADEM are

anticipating student need in career decision-making rather

than waiting until students are confronted with an immediate

situation, such as choosing a major or finding a Job.

ACADEM involves six stages with specific tasks

associated with each stage: (1) Personal Assessment: the

task for the student during this stage is to conduct an

assessment of educational-occupational interests and abili-

ties as well as values which can provide an Individual with

a set of personal criteria by which to evaluate occupa-

tions; (2) Occupational Exploration: this calls for the

student to explore a wide range of occupational groups and

evaluate how each group fits his personal criteria; (3)

Tentative Occupational Choice: the task is to choose an

occupational area which provides the greatest probability

of success and satisfaction; (4) Educational Exploration:

this involves the exploration of college majors which will

facilitate entry into the chosen occupational area, taking

into account personal Interests and academic ability; (5)

Tentative Educational Choice: the task is to choose a

college major appropriate to an occupational choice and

to choose one which has the greatest probability of success

and satisfaction; and (6) Implementation of Choices: the

student task is to "try out" experiences such as courses

and part-time or volunteer work to test the adequacy and

reality of the choices. Each experience becomes new datum

from which previously made decisions may be modified (Johnson,


There are nine activities which reflect the tasks

associated with each stage. The activities were designed

to be conducted in groups as large as 10 and as small as

six. The activities and associated goals are:



The Me Tree

The Millionaire

Occupation Preference Sort

NANO (Name an Occupation)

Friendly Persuasion I

GAM (Group a Major)

Friendly Persuasion II

Next Step


Understanding of the process
of career decision-making.

Understanding of abilities and

Understanding of values.

Understanding of personal
criteria for selecting an

Understanding of occupational

Understanding of personal reasons
for choosing an occupational

Understanding of educational

Understanding of personal reasons
for choosing a major field of

Understanding of strengths.

ACADEK was designed for use as a unit in a career

development class or some type of orientation course for

beginning college students. It is flexible and can be

easily adapted to any institution of higher education

(Johnson, 1973). The activities require approximately 50

minutes to complete. Thus, the entire group process Is

about seven and one-half hours. Each activity Is highly

structured and procedures are written In detail within the

group leader's manual (Johnson, 1973).

ACADEM has not been researched in an In-depth

manner. It has been used in a number of colleges and

evaluated from the standpoint of student satisfaction.

Dr. Richard Sharf (1974). a counseling psychologist at

the University of Delaware, In a letter to the developer

of ACADEM, Dr. Richard Johnson, wrote the following: "We

were very pleased with ACADEM. The students responded

quite well to the exercises. We feel it has been success-

ful and we plan to use it again" (1974, p. 1).

In a similar letter to Dr. Johnson, Dea Forney

(1974), Associate Director of Career Services at Allegheny

College. wrote "I am very pleased with the ACADEM program.

I have found It an adaptable sequence. The activities

were well received by the students" (1974. p. 1). No

studies were reported In the literature which had used

ACADEM with community college students.

Computer-Assisted Guidance

The effective utilization of present technology

to solve many social problems has been the subject of much

debate during the last decade. Much has been written

regarding the ability of America to place a man on the moon

but Inability to accomplish social goals (Walz, 1970).

Guidance and counseling, as a profession committed to the

social goals of human dignity and freedom, appears to have

an important role to play In utilizing effectively technol-

ogy without dehumanizing man. The manner which professional

counselors choose to use technology can have an impact on

our society and may provide meaningful leadership for other

professions. The potential value of the computer is well

recognized as it has become an integral part of our lives.

Its arrival has created both interest and controversy within

the counseling profession. Possibly because of the infor-

mation transmittal needs, a number of computer programs

have been developed for use in career guidance (Super, 1970).

Wrenn (1970) discussed the role of the counselor

in relation to the computer. He warned the counseling

profession not to take computers lightly. He saw a need

for the counselor to rethink his role and "know the element

of his essential humanness that no computer can match"

(1970. p. 37). Wrenn feared the danger of nonuse of the

computer in areas where it can be of value (information-

dispensing) and overuse by some counselors who "find the

computer assistant too comfortable in depending on it

much as they did on tests in the 1930's and 1940's"

(1970. p. 38).

Devine (1975). in his review of the literature on

current career counseling practices, mentioned that many

higher education counselors view career counseling as

boring. This was supported by a Graff and Rague (1974)

survey of college counseling centers where a lack of empha-

sis on career counseling was found. Counselors with nega-

tive attitudes toward career counseling might easily allow

the computer to take over all their work and responsibility

for career guidance.

A related concern which counselors must face is

how they can mesh their skills with computers. What are

the starting and ending points of computer-assisted guid-

ance? Where does the counselor take over and the computer

leave off? Harris (1970) stated:

If you define counseling as a one-to-one
or group relationship in which an individual
becomes capable of understanding his assets
and abilities and how best to actualize
these assets, the computer cannot, and should
not in my opinion, counsel. This type of
counseling demands and deserves the highest
and best of human communication. (1970a,
p. 163)

Super (1970) viewed the computer as "Just another

library, a terminal as just another book with a good table

of contents, a good index, and programmed interaction to

insure good personal use of data" (1970, p. 106). The

counselor can aid the student in synthesizing information

for the purpose of carrying out plans. The counselor is a

guide, therefore, to implementation rather than exploration.

Tiedeman (1975) viewed a greater need for counselors

and computers in the future. He felt that we must perceive

the technological structures as helpful In order to make

sense of the vast array of information In this society.

"If we do not do this we will never reach the stage of

technological development where we dream beyond what we are

now experiencing and be In a position to carry out that

dream" (1975, p. 389).

It Is obvious that there is a need for computers

in any profession which attempts to meet diverse human needs

and that counselors need to give thought to how they can

best utilize computers. Before this can take place, the

types of computers available and their capabilities must

be known.

Types of Computer-Based Guidance Programs

There are two types of computer-based guidance

programs; test reporting and inquiry (Miller & Tiedeman,

1974). There are many commercial firms which offer test

reporting services. Inquiry systems are of four kinds:

Indirect inquiry systems, direct Inquiry systems without

system monitoring, direct inquiry systems involving system

monitoring, and direct inquiry systems involving both

system and personal monitoring. The purpose of all of

these is to permit inquiry concerning choices of colleges,

vocational technical schools, financial aid and occupa-

tions (Miller & Tiedeman, 1974).

Indirect inquiry systems are characterized by the

fact that an individual's request Is held until a large

group of requests is received. This delay can be for

hours, days, or sometimes weeks, depending upon how volume

and price are sued in buying the needed computer time.

The system acts as a dictionary and/or encyclopedia. Ex-

amples of this type are several college selector systems

(SELECT, MATCH, EDU-DATA) (Herr & Cramer, 1972) which

furnish applicants with the names of colleges most suited

to their interests, aptitudes, and abilities.

The direct Inquiry system without monitoring gives

a student direct access to a data file and provides the

user with lists based on his questioning. The College
System of Interactive Learning is such a program. The

fact that there is no waiting time is what differentiates

this approach from the indirect inquiry system.

The direct inquiry system with monitoring provides

visual capabilities and the monitoring allows the computer

to keep a record of the alternatives chosen by the user.
This allows for interaction and checks on consistency of

decision-making. The student feeds in information and is
given Immediate feedback on its meaning. Examples of these

systems are Loughary's (1966) Automated Counseling System

(Autocoun), International Business Machine's Educational

Career Exploration System (ECES), DuPage County's Computerized

Vocational Information Program (CVIS), Bartlettville Public

School system's Total Guidance Information Support System

(TGISS) and Educational Testing Service's System of Inter-

active Guidance and Information (SIGI). Harris (1972)

outlines the characteristics of direct-inquiry-with-monitoring


1. The counselee has Immediate response to
his inquiries.
2. The counselee typically uses the system
at least twice.
3. The counselee may select from a variety
of scripts and approaches to information.
4. The system stores prior Information about
counselee which is used during the explora-
tion. The system may also store information
gathered during the student's use of the
system for review with the student and/or
the counselor.
5. The system is designed to provide a formal-
ized type of counseling assistance and may
be used without the involvement of counselors
In the process. (1972, p. 9)

The fourth type of system is the direct inquiry

Involving both system and personal monitoring. The In-

formation System for Vocational Decisions (ISVD) is

presently the only such program available. Developed by

David Tiedeman, it allows the student to program informa-

tion Into the system. Tiedeman (1974) indicated that

this allows for "what if" questions. In other words, the

student can tell the computer of certain objectives for

which he might strive. The computer then provides the stu-

dent with information regarding what the consequences will

be with the achievement of each objective. Because of high

cost, the system is not presently in use, although it is

a model for future computer guidance programs (Harris, 1974).

There are a number of computer systems which are

accessible and available to the counselor. Since the com-

puter system being used in this study is SIGI, a direct

inquiry system with monitoring, the next section discusses

some of the research which has been completed on direct

systems with monitoring.

Research on Computer Guidance Programs

Super (1970) and his colleagues have described com-

puter uses and systems to various individuals and groups.

He indicated that efforts with local groups, at regional

meetings and even in international meetings, have met with

"warm and friendly reaction, say 90%." The letters

of inquiry and interest which follow these presentations

are entirely positive" (1970, p. 47).

McKinley and Adams (1971) conducted a survey of the

Occupational Information System (DIS) used in Churchill,

Oregon. They found that over half of the student body used

it and both students and parents strongly approved. Sim-
ilarly, Adams and Anderson (1971) found CIS to be an aid

to the elderly in locating positions.

Laughary (1969) and his associates had 40 ninth

grade students interact with both a computer-based system

(AUTOCOUN) and a counselor. The experiment tested the

similarity of pupil appraisal data and course decisions

generated by the computer and the counselor. The aim of

the project was to simulate a dialogue to the extent that

students would make the same kinds of educational decisions

with the computer's help as they made with that of a human

counselor. The question of which produced the best results

was not the purpose of the study. The results indicated

that the computer agreed with the counselor on approximately

756 of the appraisal statements. On course selection and

program planning, there was 95% agreement on tenth grade

plans. 655 agreement on eleventh grade plans, and 53% agree-

ment on twelfth grade plans. When the students were followed

to determine what courses they actually took in the tenth

grade, their actions were more similar to the counselor-

generated plans than computer-generated plans. The students

enjoyed both counselor and computer but were more positive

about the counselor. They thought the computer system had

more specific and factual information, but estimated that

the counselor had a greater amount of total information.

Specifically, they thought the counselor knew more about

their interests and personalities. Finally, 38 out of the

40 Indicated that they would like to see the computer system

used in the school.

Pilato (1968) used the learning experiences then

being incorporated in the ECES to evaluate the effects on

a number of aspects of vocational decision-making. He gave

128 eleventh grade boys a task designed to make them more

aware of their own characteristics and one that taught

them more about the strucutre of the world of work. He

found that those who had experienced both tasks generally

Improved in the appropriateness of their vocational prefer-

ences. In addition, students who tended to underestimate

their own abilities improved In accuracy of self-knowledge

by the treatment. Not all of Pilato's predictions were

realized for all students. Some students did not gain at

all from the tasks, either in making better vocational

decisions or in learning more about themselves.

A study by Melhous (1973) tested Hershenson's

(1968) hypothesis that different career counseling methods

would be differentially effective for clients at different

levels of readiness for career decision-making. The top

54 and the bottom 54 high school sophomores from a class of
853 were selected on the basis of their Educational De-

velopment Test scores. Those who scored high were classi-

fied as high readiness. Half of each group (highs and lows)

received individual counseling; the other half interacted

with CVIS. It was predicted that high readiness subjects

would change more with CVIS and lows would change more with

counseling. Only the latter prediction was confirmed.

The groups did not differ in satisfaction with their post

treatment career choices. Findings suggested that indi-

vidiual counseling should be used with low readiness

clients when both Individual counseling and computer-assisted

guidance options are available.

The System of Interactive Guidance and Information

The System of Interactive Guidance and Information

(SIGI), a direct inquiry system with monitoring. is the

computer-based program which was used in this study. SIGI,

which is designed to help community college students make

career decisions and plans, was developed at the Educational

Testing Service with the help of grants from the Carnegie

Corporation and the National Science Foundation. SIGI em-

phasizes students' values and the role such values play in

making career decisions. Martin R. Katz, the developer of

the theory on which SIGI is based, makes the assumption

that values provide the dimensions along which students

analyze their own desires and along which they construe

occupational characteristics. Therefore, throughout the

five subsections of SIGI, the values of the student are

the unifying thread and are the basis on which student in-

puts are made.

The main purposes of the program are "to increase

students' freedom of choice, to develop their understanding

of the elements involved in choice, and to improve compe-

tence in the process of making informed and rational career

decisions' (Katz & Kroll, 1975, p. 3). Whereas choices

of occupations are considered, the emphasis is not only on

the content of decisions but on the process of decision-

making. Therefore,the objective of SICI is not to prescribe

the best occupation for the student, but rather to help

develop alternatives and plan actions.

A student interacts with SIGI by using a cathode-

ray tube display terminal that has a typewriter-like key-
board on which the student records his responses. Copies of

selected screen displays may be obtained at certain points

along the way by activating a high-speed printer adjacent

to the terminal. Scripts are written at the eighth grade

level of reading difficulty. Typical student usage In-

volves two to four sessions at the terminal, covering a

total of three to five hours (Katz, 1975). The content of
SIGI is made up of the introduction plus six subsystems with
each raising a major question and helping the student with

the answer. These questions and answers form steps in career

decision-making. The introduction explains the subsections

and the process through which the student will be taken.

The level of the student's career decision-making and the
type of help needed are clarified for the student.

The Values section examines 10 occupational values

and weights the importance of each. The student begins to

develop an understanding of what he wants in an occupation

and what he is willing to give up. The values are high

income, prestige, Independence, helping others, security,

variety, leadership, Interest field, leisure, and early

entry. Questions are asked which pit various values against

one another and which force the student to make a choice

among competing values. After several rounds, SIGI clari-

fies any inconsistencies and allows the student opportunity

to adjust any weighting. Since each value is rated on a

scale from 1 to 10, it Is possible for some students to have

more than 40 points and conversely for other students to

have less. The adjustment of value weightings to equal

exactly 40 points results in students' "values profile."

Locate, the second subsystem, asks the student to

consider any five values at a time and then provides a list

of occupations which meet the five values profile. The

student has the opportunity to manipulate the values in any

rank order.

Compare, the third subsystem, allows the student to

ask questions about any three occupations at a time and to

get specific information on each. Students have 28 possible

questions which cover such activities as conditions of

work, Income, entry requirements, and future outlook. The

information on these questions Is updated every six


Prediction, the fourth subsystem, provides probabil-

ities of getting various marks In key courses of prepara-

tory programs for occupations. The programming data used

for this section are unique to each college. Predictor

variables Include student self-estimate of grades in a

particular course, high school grades, aptitude or achieve-

ment test results and previous college grades. Data, as

well as grades which students have earned In particular

courses, are stored in the computer. SIGI synthesizes this

Information to assist the student in determining his chances

for a particular grade in a course.

Planning, the fifth subsystem,provides displays of

programs for entering each occupation, lists of-colleges

in the region offering suitable majors, and sources of

financial aid. Additionally, this section allows for a

thinking through of appropriate "next steps" which are

needed to achieve career goals.
Strategy, the last subsection, evaluates occupa-

tions In respect to the rewards offered and the risks of

entrance. For example, if the occupation with the highest

desirability does not also have the highest probability, Is

the reward worth the extra risk? Thus, the student evaluates

his choices and explores alternative strategies for choices.

At the end of the process, the student has an op-
portunity to see a counselor for further assistance. How-

ever, this is not an Integral or expected part of the
program. Educational Testing Service has developed the

Counselor's Handbook for SIGI (Chapman, 1973) which suggests

how the counselor can capitalize on the student's inter-

action with SIGI.

Presently, field trials and evaluation efforts are

centered at four community colleges and one four-year state

university: Mercer County Community College (Trenton, New

Jersey), Pasadena City College (Pasadena, California),

Santa Fe Community College (Gainesville, Florida),
Eastfield College of the Dallas County Community College

District (Mesquite, Texas), and Illinois State University
(Normal, Illinois).

Research on the System of Interactive Guidance and Informa-

Katz and Kroll (1975), the research psychologists
for SIGI, have proposed that evaluative research efforts
are needed which are process oriented and designed to re-

veal student thinking and logic. They also view a need to

"determine how SIGI and counseling can best mesh" (1975,

p. 12). The only research completed on SIGI previous to the
present field testing was a pilot field trial conducted at

Mercer County Community College (Chapman, 1973). The

main purposes were initial evaluation of SIGI and tryout

of evaluative procedures and instruments. A stratified

random sample of students was chosen to represent propor-

tionately the sex and curriculum distributions of the Mercer

freshman class. Experimental and control groups of 30

students each were then matched on the basis of reading

and mathematics test scores.

Students In the experimental group were interviewed

one week after completion of SIGI; control-group students

were interviewed before they used SIGI. The interview

session included an oral interview; response to a written

information test; participation in a decision-making game;

and, for the experimental group only, a personal evaluation

of SIGI. Small sample sizes precluded certain statistical

analyses, yet this preliminary evaluation provided the basis

for positive findings. Students who had experienced SIGI

reacted favorably. When asked to grade SIGI on a five

point scale with zero representing maximum dissatisfaction

and four maximum satisfaction, students gave SIGI mean

grades of between three and four on each of the following

characteristics and accomplishments: interest level,

clarity of directions, helpfulness in achieving increased

awareness of values, understanding relation of values to

career decisions, identifying occupations that fit values,

getting information about occupations, understanding pre-

dictions expressed as probabilities, getting information

about programs of study, planning an appropriate program,

and learning how to make career decisions.

Other results of the study included students re-

porting that they had become more aware of their values and

had learned how values are related to career decisions.

No differences were found in the usefulness or effect of

SIGI by sex or by the amount of occupational knowledge

students claimed to possess before interaction with SIGl.

Students who scored below the median of the study group on

a reading test took longer to complete some SIGI subsections

than did the group as a whole. Evidence supported the fact

that SIGI was used in the way It was designed to be used.

A recent study by Devine (lg975) comes closest to

matching the investigation being undertaken In this study.

Devine evaluated the impact of SIGI on the career develop-

ment of community college students at Santa Fe Community

College in Gainesville, Florida. Specifically, his study

was designed to determine the effects of SIGI on students'

career maturity, as measured by the Career Maturity In-

ventory. Using a randomized-solomon-four-group design with

84 students, no significant effects on career maturity

were found.

The Career Maturity Inventory

The standardized Instrument which was used In this

study was the Career Maturity Inventory (CMI) developed
originally as the Vocational Development Inventory (VDI) by

John Crites in 1961. The name was changed in 1973 to re-

flect the recent emphasis on career rather than the limit-

ing connotations of "vocation" and to convey the concept of

progressive change which underlies emerging career awareness

exploration and decision-making. Crites constructed the

instrument to measure two of the four variables within his

career maturity model: career choice attitude and career

choice competencies. Only the attitude scale was used in

this study since the competency scale has had limited

use and is still being validated. The attitude scale is

written at the sixth grade level and is applicable for use

with individuals from elementary school through the senior

year in college (Crites, 1973b).

Super (1969) criticized the instrument on the grounds
that he feared that it might yield a misleading appearance

of practicality, which would basically discredit the con-

cept of career maturity rather than help its "examination

for many purposes" (Super, 1969, p. 35). Holland (1969) in-

dicated that "the VDI provided the only simple, practical

measure of what Super calls 'vocational maturity' so that

researchers of different persuasions can examine the con-
cept for many purposes" (1969. p. 16).

The CMI Attitude Scale

The Attitude Scale is a self-report instrument con-
sisting of 50 true-false items which are designed to measure
attitudes toward career choice on five dimensions: Involve-

ment in the choice process, orientation toward work. In-

dependence in decision-making, preference for career choice

factors, and conceptions of the choice process. Only a

total raw score results even though the scale theoretically

Includes the five dimensions listed above. Total testing

time is approximately 20 minutes.

No national norms exist for the CMI Attitude Scale,

since "the most appropriate reference group for an indi-

vidual Is the one he resembles demographically and educa-

tionally" (Crites, 1973a, p. 13). In using local norms,

however, the primary consideration is to determine an
Individual's rate of career development in comparison to
grademates (1973a, p. 13). An assessment can be made
about a student's career maturity by simply locating the
percentile rank corresponding to an individual's raw score

In the reference norm table for his grade. In samples of

college freshmen in three states, means of 39.77, 38.86,

and 39.29 were reported with scores ranging from 26 to 47

and with standard deviations of 4.11. 4.21, and 6.01


The CMI Attitude Scale has been used perhaps most

extensively with elementary and secondary school subjects,

but several studies (Alken & Johnston,1973; Jackson, 1971;

Walsh, Howard. O'Brien, Santa-Maria, & Edmundson, 1973;

Walsh & Osipow, 1973) have demonstrated its utility in

assessing the career maturity of college students. Large-

scale testing of college students has also indicated that

"there is sufficient ceiling on the Attitude Scale to ad-

minister it to college sophomores and juniors and even

selected seniors, primarily those who are still undecided

about their careers" (Crites, 1973a, p. 51).

Reliability and Validity
of the Career Maturity Inventory Attitude Scale

Reliability of the attitude scale was determined

by the internal consistency method and the test-retest

method. Internal consistency coefficients of .74 were
determined by the Kuder-Richardson formula. These coeffi-
cients are comparable to other instruments similar to the

attitude scale and are consistent with theoretical expecta-

tions since the Instrument was designed to measure related

but not Identical measures of vocational attitudes (Crites,

1973b, p. 14). A test-retest reliability coefficient of

.71 was reported for 1,648 students in grades six through

12, tested and retested over a one-year period. This is

considered acceptable on theoretical grounds since a high

stability coefficient would be contrary to the theory that

vocational behavior matures with time (Crites, 1973b).

As defined by this methodology and as developed substan-

tively, the Attitude Scale would appear to have acceptable

content reliability (Crites, 1973b).

In order to establish criterion-related validity,

the Attitude Scale was correlated with career maturity In-

dices such as occupational aspiration, decisiveness and

realism of career choice, and the instrument. Readiness

for Vocational Planning (RVP), developed by Gribbons and

Lohnes. In summary Crites (1973b) concluded that:

It is recognized that the n's are smaller
than desired in some studies and hence
their findings should be replicated before
any definitive conclusions are drawn;
nevertheless, they generally indicate
that the attitude scale has demonstrated
criterion related validity. (Crites.
1973b. p. 16)

Content validity was demonstrated through the pro-

cedure employed In selecting items and through the judg-

ment of 10 experts, whose opinions reached a 74% level of

agreement with the scoring key. Criterion-related validity

was established through a correlation study of the CMI and

the Readiness for Vocational Planning Scale. A correla-

tion coefficient of .38 (p<.01) was reported for these two

instruments. Another study cited as evidence of the

criterion validity, reported a biserial r of .25 between

the CMI and the subjects' decisions about a career (Crites.


Results of studies on construct validity are mixed

but generally supportive in the areas of response bias, cor-

relations with other variables and experimental manipula-

tions of counseling and didactic experiences (Crites, 1973a).

Generally, the accumulated research on the Attitude Scale

supports its construct validity. "It appears to be related

to variables to which, theoretically, it should be related

and unrelated to variables to which it should not be re-

lated" (Crites, 1973a, p. 21).

Research Using the Attitude Scale for Assessment

As a means of assessing different types of inter-

ventions, the Attitude Scale has been used in over 200

studies with mixed results (Crites, 1973b). These studies,

which attempted to change attitude scores from lesser to

greater career maturity have been of two kinds: some type

of counseling experience, either individual or group, and

some variation In a didactic exposure, such as an occupa-

tional information course or career game. Several studies,

using the CMI Attitude Scale, have demonstrated that coun-

seled students average higherscores than noncounseled students

on the posttest. In the counseling studies, experiments by

Asbury (1969), Bovee (1967), and Gilliland (1966) Indicated

that counseled students averaged higher scores than non-
counseled students on the Attitude Scale posttest. The sub-
jects In these investigations were representatives of sev-
eral parameters, Including sex, grade, and subgroup mem-
bership (e.g., race and socioeconomic status). Other inves-
tigations have yielded contrary evidence (Myers, 1966;
Guierriero, 1967; Williams, 1967). The causes of these
nonsignificant results may be due to any number of factors

(Crites, 1971a); further research is needed to determine
their import. Crites (1973) stated that "the best conclu-

sion which can be drawn at present is that counseling
evidently can affect Attitude Scale scores favorably but it
is not known why" (1973a, p. 20).

Summary of the Literature

Since Super undertook his Career Pattern Study in
1951, much attention has been devoted to the concept of
career development. As a consequence of investigating de-
velopmental variables which allow for the movement of students
from one stage to another, the concept of career maturity

has evolved. John Crites has been one of the principal

researchers in the study of career maturity and supportive

evidence is mounting that career maturity is a construct.

Several instruments have been developed which purport to

measure career maturity. The Career Maturity Inventory

(CMI) Is one such instrument. Research on the CMI has

illustrated its utility In assessing not only career

maturity but the effects of intervention programs on a

client's career development. Studies also have been com-

pleted which demonstrate that career maturity can be in-

creased in a relatively short time.

Group career counseling is a relatively new method

which counselors have utilized in aiding students with their

career development. Research which has been completed on

this methodology has generally provided support to Its

efficacy as an intervention technique in career develop-

ment. However, most of the studies fail to provide specific

information on the steps involved In the group counseling

process. More information is needed on group counseling

approaches which can be replicated and their effectiveness

on specific outcome criteria.

ACADEM is a group career counseling activity which

is replicable. There isno information on the relationship

ACADEM has to outcome criteria such as career maturity. This

study examines the relationship ACADEM has to the development

of career maturity in community college students.

The need for seriously considering the role of

computers In counseling is of increasing importance as

this technology continues to improve and to become more

available. Little research has occurred on direct inquiry
with monitoring computer systems. SIGI is one such com-

puter system. It has been designed to aid community college

students with their career development. Career maturity

is an objective which counselors seek to achieve in the

career development of students. The relationship which

SIGI has to career maturity is still being studied.

Counselors have two new techniques from which they

can choose in aiding students in their career development:

ACADEH, a replicable group career counseling activity and

SIEI. a computer program. If the activities and systems

are used correctly, similar results can be expected from
one session to the next. The extent to which both relate

to career maturity is largely unknown.



The relationship of SIGI and ACADEM to the career

maturity of community college students was determined by

an experimental research design. The Career Maturity In-

ventory Attitude Scale was administered prior to. and at

the end of, the treatment. A questionnaire was administered

prior to treatment to record the variables of sex, age, and

decidedness on an occupation of participating students

(Appendix A). These variables were studied to determine

what relationship they had to career maturity among students

participating In SIGI or ACADEM. A posttreatment question-

naire was administered to both the SIGI and the ACADEM

groups to assess students' reactions to their respective

activities. The posttreatment questionnaire contained

general questions for both groups, but It also included

Specific questions relating to the unique objectives which

each activity attempted to achieve.

Research Questions

1. What is the relationship between students'
scores on the CMI Attitude Scale and partici-
pation in SIGI or the ACADEM program?

2. What is the relationship between students' sex
and their scores on the CMI Attitude Scale after
participation In SIGI or the ACADEM program?

3. What is the relationship between students'
decision on an occupation and their scores on
the CMI Attitude Scale after participation in
SIGI or the ACADEM program?

4. What Is the relationship between younger and
older students' scores on the CMI Attitude
Scale after participation in SIGI or the ACAOEM

5. What are student reactions to the SIGI or the
ACADEM experience, as measured by a posttreatment


The sample of this study consisted of 97 full time

community college students registered at Santa Fe Community

College, Galnesville, Florida. These students were enrolled

In a three hour behavioral science elective, "The Individual

In A Changing Environment,' (BE 100). For students who

are pursuing the Associate of Arts Degree, the course can

be transferred, as a social science credit, to all Florida

state universities. Students enrolled in the vocational-

technical program (Associate in Science Degree) can count

the course toward their social behavioral science require-

ments. The course content includes a unit on orientation

to the community college and its various academic and vo-

cational programs, a career awareness and development unit

which attempts to assist students in achieving higher levels

of career development, and a unit on personal and other

awareness which has the objective of achieving higher

levels of personal growth. Approximately 80% of the

total Santa Fe student body take this course.

Selection of the Subjects

Students for this study were enrolled in nine sec-

tions of BE 100 during the Fall Quarter, 1975. There were

34 students in the control group, 32 In the SIGI group, and

31 In the ACADEM group. Three of the nine sections were

taught by the Investigator. Two other counselor/instructors,

who were teaching three sections each, assisted with the

investigation. One utilized the SIGI program as her

career unit, while the second made his classes available

for the control group. The investigator used ACADEM as

the career unit for his classes.

The Awareness of Career Decision-Making Procedures

The ACADEM group counseling activity was used as

the career unit with three sections of BE 100. Credit was

given for student participation. It was necessary to have

two individuals involved In leading the group counseling

activity since the maximum number of students for which

ACADEM can be used is 10. Therefore, the counselor/instructor

of the class, the investigator, and another BE 100

counselor/instructor conducted the ACADEM activity. The

students were randomly assigned to the two counselor/

The counselor/instructor who assisted with ACADEM
received training and preparation for this involvement from
the investigator. Training consisted of (1) a presentation

on the theory and rationale of ACADEM, (2) an explanation

of each of the activities and associated goals, (3) a

review and discussion of the group process guide from

which the counselor reads Instructions (Appendix B),

(4) a discussion of group counseling steps and techniques
and how they are and can be utilized within the ACADEM
process, and (5) a complete orientation to the research

project. The techniques discussed were pairing, facilita-

tive responses (Wittmer & Hyrick, 1974), and tasking

and selective responding (Daane, 1972).
Johnson (1973) viewed ACADEM as a group counseling
activity not requiring a great amount of training or ex-
pertise to utilize. He stated, "leaders need only to have
the basic characteristics of any helpers: (a) ability to
listen, (b) ability to understand others, and (c) ability
to communicate clearly" (1973, p. 4).

The schedule for the ACADEM career unit was as


Week Class Content

1 1 Pretest

1 2 "The Me Tree"

"The Millionaire"

2 3 "Occupational Prefer-
ence Sort"

2 4 "Name an Occupation"

'Frlendly Persuasion I"

2 5 "Group A Major"

"Friendly Persuasion

3 6 "Strength Bombardment"


Understanding the process of
career decision-making.

Understanding abilities and

Understanding personal values.

Understanding occupational

Understanding occupational

Understanding reasons for choos-
ing an occupation.

Understanding educational

Understanding reasons for
choosing a major.

Understanding strengths for
implementing decisions.

System of Interactive Guidance and Information

Exposure to SIGI took place as the career unit for

three sections of BE 100 with credit given for student par-

ticipation. The counselor/ instructor monitored the students'

involvement with SIGI by meeting with them during their

last regularly scheduled class of each week. The other

classes did not meet during the week In order to allow

students time to complete the SIGI assignment. Students

were assigned two-hour time periods each week for three

weeks and were required to complete the following sub-

systems during their scheduled interaction with SIGI.

Subsystem Stage of Career Unit

1. Values 1st week

2. Locate and Compare 2nd week

3. Planning and Strategy 3rd week

The Investigator realized that this approach to

the use of SIGI was different from the procedure which Is

normally used. However, this approach was chosen because

SIGI was an integral part of a class and the investigator

was Interested in analyzing the effects of a counselor

monitoring process where the Counselor's Handbook for SIGI

(Chapman, 1973) was utilized. Furthermore, this approach

Insured a time frame (three weeks) which was the same as

the time devoted to participation with ACADEM.

The counselor/instructor used the Counselor's

Handbook for SIGI during the weekly meetings. The hand-

book provides guidelines which assist the counselor in

orienting students to SIGI by providing detailed information

on each subsystem. In addition, suggestions are included

for effectively handling some anticipated problem areas.

The investigator met with the counselor/instructor and

her students at the end of each week to assist in the de-

briefing and handbook utilization. The counselor/instructor

whose class used SIGI as the career unit was the same

counselor/instructor who aided the Investigator with


The SIGI career unit schedule was as follows:

leek Class Content

1 1 a. Explanation of the research project.
b. Administration of the pretest.
c. Orientation to the SIGI program using the
guidelines in the handbook.

2 2 a. Discussion of the introduction and values
b. Problems encountered.
c. Utilization of the guidelines for discussions
of this subsystem as mentioned in the hand-

3 3 a. Discussion of the Locate and Compare subsystems.
b. Problems encountered.
c. Utilization of the guidelines for discussion
of this subsystem as mentioned in the hand-

4 4 a. Discussion of the Planning and Strategy sub-
b. Problems encountered.
c. Utilization of the guidelines for discussion
of this subsystem as mentioned In the hand-

Control Group Procedures

A third counselor/instructor made available three

sections of his classes for a control group. The total num-

ber of control group students who completed the pretest and

posttest was 34. The counselor/Instructor of the control

group did not present or plan a career information discus-

sion during or before the experiment. However, if any career

related question was raised, he addressed himself to It In

a natural manner. The career unit which is, as stated above,

an integral part of BE 100 was presented in these three

sections after the students took the posttest.

The Research Design

A nonequivalent control group design (Campbell &

Stanley, 1966) was used to test the hypotheses. In order

to equate the experimental and control groups, an analysis

of covarlance was used. The method in which the students

were recruited also aided in bringing about equivalence.

Campbell and Stanley (1966) Indicated that the control

group Is more effective when there is similarity in the

recruitment of the experimental and control groups. As

stated above, BE 100 is an elective and all students are

provided the same information regarding the course. There

is no special placement or grouping around variables such

as teacher personality.

The nonequivalent control group design provides

protection against threats to internal validity. However

the design does not control for the Interaction of testing

and treatment, a threat to external validity. The

threat of another external validity problem, reactive ar-

rangements, is controlled. Campbell and Stanley (1966)

have stated that when the treatment is a regular and

natural part of the classroom, reactive arrangements are

not a threat. In this study the treatment was integrated

into the subject matter and was the content for the career

unit, one of the expected units of study of the course,
as outlined in the school catalog.

The graphic representation of the design is as

Group Pretest Treatment Posttest



C I1 X2

Analysis of the Data

Raw scores (the number of correct responses) were
computed for each student participating In the experiment.

The range of possible scores is 0-50 on the Attitude

Scale with a higher score indicating greater career ma-

turity. Items on the career information questionnaire

(Appendix A) pertaining to a decision on an occupation

were scored "1" for a "yes" and a "2" for a "no" response.

The variable of sex was scored as a "1" for male and as a

'2" for female. The median age of the entire group was

then determined. Those students at the median and above

were considered "older" and scored as a "1' and those under

the median were considered "younger" and scored as a "2."

An analysis of covariance, with the pretest as the

covariate, was used to determine what differences, if any,

existed between the groups (SIGI, ACADEM, and control) or

the variables (sex, age, and decision on an occupation)

being studied. A .05 level of significance was accepted

as demonstrating significance. The Scheffe multiple com-

parison technique was used to determine which, if any,

groups or variables differed significantly.

The questionnaire used to assess student reactions

to the SIGI or the ACADEM activity was developed by the in-

vestigator (Appedices C and 0). The questionnaire was de-

signed to stimulate student reactions to statements about

the activity. A five-point Likert Scale was used for

student responses. The first eight statements on both

questionnaires are the same for both groups. The remaining

statements (five for SIG1 and seven for ACADEM) related

to the objectives which each treatment attempted to

achieve. The last statement on the SIGI questionnaire

asked students to react to the value of the in-class

discussion and monitoring of SIGI. Raw scores and per-

centages for each category were tallied for each state-


Assumptions of the Study

It was assumed that attitudes can be changed In

a relatively short treatment time. Some may contend that

the period of time in this study was too short to bring

about any significant attitude change. However, previous

studies, cited in Chapter II, have reported significant

changes on the Attitude Scale over a period of six weeks.

A second assumption was that the Investigator's

direct participation In the study as an ACADEM group

leader and a counseling monitor to SIGI would have no

significant effect upon the outcome. It was assumed that

the same results would occur if another qualified counselor

was Involved in the study. This assumption is based on the

fact that the Investigator had no vested interest In the

success or failure of either SIGI or ACADEM and did not

have any unique characteristics which would set him apart

from other counselors. Furthermore, some might take the


position that the Investigator's involvement could enhance

the total study. Since he was involved in both of the

treatment groups, this could provide a basis for a more

equivalent treatment.




In this study, the researcher examined the rela-

tionship of the SIGI computer-assisted career guidance

program and the ACADEM group career counseling program to

the career maturity of students who participated in these

career development programs. The study was not designed

to compare SIGI with ACADEM; rather each of these was

compared to a common control group. In this chapter an

analysis of the data is presented. The analysis is based

on the methodology and statistical procedures described in

Chapter III. The computer program, Statistical Package for

The Social Sciences (SPSS) one-way procedure, was used to

aid in the data analysis.

Results of Questions 1, 2, 3, and 4

What Is the relationship between students'
scores on the CMI Attitude Scale and par-
ticipation in the SIGI or the ACADEM pro-

The data used to answer this question are reported

in Tables 1 and 2. Table 1 shows an analysis of covariance

of CHI Attitude scores for the three groups. The covari-

ate, the pretest, did not relate significantly to the post-

test scores. An observed significance at the .05 level of

confidence was found within the three groups on posttest


Table 2 reveals the results of testing to determine

where significance occurred. As can be observed, the post-

test means were adjusted for the regression effect of

the covariate. Scheffe's multiple comparison technique

was used to determine the significance of change in the

adjusted means. It was discovered that the SIGI students'

posttest scores were significantly different from the con-

trol group.

2. What Is the relationship between students'
sex and their scores on the CMI Attitude
Scale after participation in the SIGI or
the ACAOEM program?

The results of testing to answer this question are

reported in Table 3. No significant differences were

found between males'and females'mean scores from pretest to

posttest. No interaction effects were present.

3. What is the relationship between students'
decision on an occupation and their scores on
the CMI Attitude Scale after participation In
the SIGI or the ACADEM program?

Table 1

Analysis of Covariance of Final Career
Maturity Attitude Scores of SIGI, ACADEM and Control Groups

Source of Variation Sum of Squares OF Mean Square F

Pretest* 87 2 44 1.42

Within Pretest 2927 94 31

Total 3014 96

Treatments 119 2 60 5.45**

Error Within
Adjusted Groups 982 93

Total 1101 95


** Significant at p < .05

Table 2

Adjusted Posttest Mean Scores of Career Maturity
of Groups (A), and Aposterlorl Comparisons with Scheffes Method (8)

(A) Adjusted Posttest Means by Group

For Regre
Group Pretest Means Posttest Means

SIGI 34.32 37.78

ACADEM 36.28 37.74

Control 35.97 35.53

(8) Scheffe Aposteriori Comparisons of Differences In Adjusted Means
Difference Critical Difference 51i

SIGI vs Control


ACADEM vs Control



Means Adjusted
esslon Effect of




;nlficance of F



*Significant at p < .05

Table 3

Analysis of Variance of Sex Differences Within Groups

Source Sum of Squares DF Mean Squares F Significance of F

Main Effects 215.446 3 71.815 5.546
Group 207.420 2 103.710 8.081
Sex 11.836 1 11.836 0.922 0.999

2-Way Interactions
Group Sex 9.119 2 4.560 0.355 0.999

Explained 355.333 6 59.222 4.615

Residual 1155.028 90 12.834

Total 1510.362 96 15.733

Table 4 contains the data which answered this ques-

tion. A significant difference was not found between

students who were decided on an occupation and those who

were undecided. No Interaction effects were present.

4. What is the relationship between younger and
older students' scores on the CMI Attitude
Scale after participation In the SIGI or the
ACADEM program?

The results of testing to answer this question are

reported in Table S. No significant difference was found

between the scores of students under 19 and those 19 and

over from pretest to posttest. There were no interaction


Discussion of Results to Questions 1, 2. 3, and 4

There are a number of factors which could have led

to the significance of change in the SIGI group scores.

The fact that SIGI is a novel approach to which most

students have never been exposed could have created the

excitement and motivation needed to facilitate student con-

centration and attention. Also, SIGI is an individualized

approach which is designed to provide a student with In-

formation relevant to his particular needs. Therefore, a

student receives personal attention and information for the

length of the SIGI program, which is approximately five

Table 4

Analysis of Variance of Decidedness
Differences Within Groups

Source Sum of Squares OF Mean Squares F Significance of F

Main Effects 219.506 3 73.169 5.686
Group 170.964 2 85.482 6.643
Decide 15.896 1 15.896 1.235 0.269

2-Way Interactions
Group Decide 1.930 2 0.965 0.075 0.999

Explained 352.204 6 58.701 4.562

Residual 1158.158 90 12.868

Total 1510.362 96 15.733

Table 5

Analysis of Varlance of Age Differences Within Groups

Source Sun of Squares OF Mean Squares F Signlficance of F

Main Effects

2-Way Interactions
Group Age



67.875 5.196
97.870 7.492
0.015 0.001












hours. This differs from the ACADEM activity which Is

a group approach and does not provide the depth of in-

dividual attention.

In a related study reported In Chapter II. Devine

(1975) found that the SIGI program did not have a signifi-

cant effect upon students' career maturity attitude scores.

In comparing the research design of this study with that

of Devine's, three major differences are apparent. First,

Devine's sample consisted of community college students

who volunteered to participate in the study, whereas this

study's sample consisted of students who were required to

complete the SIGI program as a part of a career develop-

ment unit within a behavioral science class. Secondly,

in Devine's study, students did not receive the help of a

counselor as they proceeded through the SIGI program. In

this study, students met with their behavioral science

class counselor/instructor once each week during the three

weeks of the SIGI assignment. During those meetings, the

counselor/instructor used the instructions and suggestions
in the Counselor's Handbook for SIGI (Chapman, 1973) as a

guide for discussion. Those discussions undoubtedly aided

students In having a better understanding of the SIGI sub-

sections. Consequently, they were able to use their time

spent at the terminal more effectively. Thirdly, Devine's

study allowed students the flexibility of completing SIGI

anytime within a five-week span. As a consequence, some

students completed the program within the first few days

while others delayed their completion until the fifth week.

Thus, when the posttest was administered at the end of the

fifth week, there were varying levels of freshness of in-

formation and maturation. In contrast, this study required

students to proceed through SIGI at the same pace. They

were assigned to specific subsections each week during the

three weeks and were asked not to proceed into additional

subsections. As mentioned previously, the ACADEM activity

did not provide for the depth of individual attention and

information as did the SIGI activity. It is possible that

this is a reason why the ACADEM students' scores were not

significant and the scores of SIGI students were. A second

possibility is the fact that the ACADEM program was not

completed In one or two sessions but was extended over six

sessions lasting three weeks. Although Johnson, the author

of ACADEH, does not recommend a specific time frame or a

certain sequencing of activities, the ACADEM program does

rely on a positive group climate for purposes of interaction

and feedback. Perhaps the fact that there were six stopping

and starting points before the activity was completed may

have hindered the development of the group climate needed

to maximize learning.

Results of Question 5

5. What are student reactions to the SIGI or the
ACADEM experience, as measured by a post-
treatment questionnaire?

As reported in Chapter III, students in both

treatment groups responded to the questionnaire items 1

through 8. The remaining statements on both the SIGI

and ACADEM questionnaires (with the exception of state-

ment 14 on the SIGI questionnaire) related to the objec-

tives which each activity attempted to achieve. There-

fore, since each activity had a different set of objec-

tives, the remaining statements were different for each

group (Appendices C and D).

The responses of the students who participated in

SIGI are revealed in Tables B and 9, while the responses

of those students who participated in ACADEM are revealed

in Tables 10 and 11. Table 12 compares the feelings of

both the SIGI and the ACADEM students regarding the

achievement of the objectives of their respective activ-

ities. Table 13 reports the extent to which the SIGI

students perceived, as being helpful, the in-class dis-

cussions on SIGI.

Tables 6 and 7 provide a comparison of SIGI and

ACADEM student responses to the first eight statements.

To statement 1, "the activity provided me with helpful

information on occupations," 13.91 of the ACADEM students

and 30.5% of the SIGI students responded "strongly agree,"

65.1% of the ACADEM students and 63.8% of the SIGI students

responded "agree," 16.21 of the ACADEM students and 2.7%

of the SIGI students responded "not certain," 4.61 of the

ACADEM students and none of the SIGI students responded

"disagree," and none of the ACADEH students and 2.7% of

the SIGI students responded "strongly disagree" (Table 6).

In summary. Table 7 reveals that 79% of the ACADEH students

and 94.4% of the SIGI students responded positively while

4.6% of the ACADEM students and 2.7% of the SIGI students

responded negatively.

To statement 2, "the activity aided me In choosing

an occupation," 9.3% of the ACADEM students and 11.1% of

the SIGI students responded "strongly agree," 23.21 of

the ACADEM students and 36.1% of the SIGI students responded

"agree," 41.8% of the ACADEM students and 3D.5% of the SIGI

students were "not certain," 25.5% of the ACADEM students

and 16.6% of the SIGI students disagreed, and none of the

ACADEM students and 5.5% of the SIGI students responded

"strongly disagree" (Table 6). In summary, Table 7 reveals

that 32.5% of the ACADEM students and 47.2% of the SIGI

students felt positive while 25.5% of the ACADEM students

and 22.2% of the SIGI students felt negative toward state-

ment 2.

To statement 3, "the activity aided me to clarify

my values,' 20.9% of the ACADEM students and 16.6% of the

SIGI students strongly agreed, 60.4% of the ACADEM students

and 55.5% of the SIGI students agreed, 18.6% of the ACADEM

Table 6

Student Reactions to SIGI (5) or to ACAOEM (A).
First Eight Statements-Five Categories

Strongly Disagree Disaqree ot Certain Ar Strongly Agree Total
Activity R I N % n N % N % N

1. Provided me with (A)
helpful information (5)
on occupations.
2. Aided me In choos- (A)
Ing an occupation. (5)
3. Helped me to clar- (A)
Ify my values. (5)
4. Aided me in my aca- (A)
demic planning. (5)
5. Helped me to develop
decision-making )
6. The Instructions I (A)
received were clear. (5)
7. I enjoyed the ac- (A)
tivity. (S)
8. Other students would (A
benefit from the ac- ()
Total ()

0 0 2 4.6 7
1 2.7 0 0 1

0 0 11 25.5 18
2 5.5 6 16.6 11
0 0 0 0 8
1 2.7 1 2.7 8
1 2.3 5 11.6 24
1 2.7 5 13.8 5

0 0 7 16.2 12
2 5.5 6 16.6 10


0 2 4.6 6
2.7 2 5.5 1
2.3 1 2.3 1
2.0 3 8.3 1

0 2 4.6 5
2.7 0 0 3
.05 30 8.7 81
3.4 23 8.6 40

16.2 28 65.1 6
2.7 23 63.8 11

41.8 10 23.2 4
30.5 13 36.1 4
18.6 26 60.4 9
22.2 20 55.5 6
55.8 12 27.9 1
13.8 23 63.8 2

27.9 21 48.8 3
27.7 14 38.8 4

13.9 25 58.7 10
2.7 19 50.7 13
2.3 20 46.5 20
2.7 19 52.7 12

11.6 16 37.2 20
8.3 19 52.7 13
23.4 158 46.0 73
13.8 150 51.5 65


Table 7

Student Reactions to 51GI (S) or to ACADEM (A).
First Eight Statements-Three Categories

Negative not Certain Positive Total
Statement Activity N I I N

1. Provided me with helpful (A)
information on occupations. (5)

2. Aided me in choosing an (A)
occupation. (5)

3. Helped me to clarify my (A)
values. (5)

4. Aided me In my academic (A)
planning. (5)

5. Helped me to develop (A)
decision-making skills.

6. The instructions I (A)
received were clear. (S)

7. I enjoyed the activity. (A)

benefit from the activity. (

Total (A)

2 4.6 7 16.2 34 79.0
1 2.7 1 2.7 34 94.4

11 25.5 18 41.8 14 32.5
8 22.2 11 30.5 17 47.2

0 0 8 18.6 35 81.3
2 5.5 8 22.2 26 72.2

6 13.9 24 55.0 13 30.2
6 10.6 5 13.8 25 69.4

7 16.2 12 27.9 24 58.1
8 22.2 10 27.7 18 50.0

2 4.6 6 13.9 35 81.3
3 8.3 1 2.7 32 08.8
2 4.6 1 2.3 40 93.0
4 8.3 1 2.7 31 88.5
2 4.6 5 11.6 36 83.7
1 2.7 3 8.3 32 80.8
32 9.2 81 23.4 231 66.9
33 11 4 40 13.8 215 74.6

-- `~"

students and 22.2% of the SIG1 students were not certain,

none of the ACADEM students and 2.7% of the SIGI students

disagreed, and none of the ACADEM students and 2.7% of

the SIGI students strongly disagreed (Table 6). Table 7
reveals that a total of 81.3% of the ACADEM students and

72.21 of the SIGI students felt positive, while none of

the ACADEM students and 5.5% of the SIGI students felt

negative toward statement 3.

To statement 4, "the activity aided me in my aca-

demic planning," 2.3% of the ACADEH students and 5.5% of

the SI1 students responded "strongly agree," 27.9% of

the ACADEM students and 63.8% of the SIGI students responded

"agree," 55.8% of the ACADEM students and 13.8% of the

SIGI students responded 'not certain," 11.6% of the ACADEM

students and 11.8% of the SIGI students responded "dis-

agree," and 2.3% of the ACADEH students and 2.7% of the

SIGI students responded "strongly disagree" (Table 6).

Table 7 reveals that a total of 30.2% of the ACADEM

students and 69.4% of the SIGI students felt positive

toward statement 4, while 13.9% of the ACADEM students

and 10.6% of the SIGI students felt negative.

To statement S. "the activity helped me to de-

velop decision-making skills," 6.9% of the ACADEM students

and 11.1% of the SIGI students responded "strongly agree,"
48.8% of the ACADEM students and 38.8% of the SIGI students

University of Florida Home Page
© 2004 - 2010 University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries.
All rights reserved.

Acceptable Use, Copyright, and Disclaimer Statement
Last updated October 10, 2010 - Version 2.9.7 - mvs