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Career Assessment for All Students

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  1. Career Assessment for All Students Governor’s Institute for Career Education & Work Pennsylvania College of Technology Williamsport, PA June 18, 2008

  2. Career Assessment Career Development Evolving Spiral Of Growth

  3. Spiral of Growth Embedded in PA Career Education & Work Academic Standards • Career (and self) Awareness and Preparation • Career Acquisition (more than ‘getting a job’) • Career Retention & Advancement • Entrepreneurship • Other Academic Standards + SCANS 21st Century Skills, Equipped for the Future

  4. Learning Objectives Participants will Gain understanding of reiterative career development process in which all students should engage; Identify essential framework for career assessment Learn how to triangulate information for validity Practice planning career assessment Begin to create a career assessment process for all students in own schools

  5. Types of Assessment Transition Assessment relates to all life roles and the supports needed before, during, and after transition to adult life; it serves as an umbrella for career and vocational assessment and evaluation. Career Assessment relates to life-long career development, which affects life roles, and is ongoing throughout one’s life. Vocational Assessment and Evaluation relate to the role of the potential worker (and employment).

  6. National Attention to Transition for All Students Freshman Transition Initiative: • Replacing ‘no child left behind’ with ‘student self-sufficiency’ • Promoting self-sufficiency in 8th & 9th grades with a 10-year career and life plan •

  7. Domains/Content of Transition Assessment & Adulthood Home and Family Employment and Education Leisure and Pursuits Self Determination Personal Responsibility and Relationships Community Involvement Physical andEmotionalHealth Cronin, M. E. & Patton, J. R. (1993). Life skills instruction for all students with special needs: A practical guide for integrating real-life content into the curriculum. p 13. Austin TX: PRO-ED.

  8. Domains/Content of Transition Assessment & Adulthood Employment and Education Domain [Careers] Conducted within a Career Development Context: Knowing Where to Begin

  9. Career Assessment is A process of gathering relevant information to plan, evaluate, or make career decisions. Data (information) can be derived from a number of sources over a period of time. It occurs within a career development context

  10. Transition and Career Assessment:Where are we? • Are all of your students graduating? • Are all of your students achieving success post high school? • Are all of your students satisfied with their quality of life after high school? • Are you satisfied with how students are assessed? You are not alone!

  11. Change the Proverbial Assessment Cycle by Creating Systemic Change

  12. System Change is Needed: Most students do not participate in career assessment processes Schools do not have a systematic, responsive process Administrators are focused elsewhere Counselors have some training, but are too busy (Hughes & Karp, 2004) Teachers do not have training (personal communications) and are too busy Families struggle to know what to do Many youth are floundering and failing

  13. Beginning to Create a Systemic Change for Career Assessment of All Students Ask specific questions several times a year and include everyone: do we have plans for it? What are they? how often will we assess? what do we assess? how will we assess? What will the students experience? who is responsible and for what aspects of the process? is it customized for the individual student? do we have checkpoints and benchmarks for the on-going process? are we doing “whatever it takes” to assess? Is the process accessible to all?

  14. Ask ‘what is’ and ‘what’ before asking ‘how to’ Avoid planning around “instruments” we have available or those which require minimal preparation Planning around instrumentation rather than - “what” the person needs, - what attributes they possess, and - what ecologies they inhabit and seek and the congruence between these leads to piecemeal profiles and fragmented planning

  15. Answer the first three questions • Do we have plans for a systemic career assessment process? • What are these plans? • How often will we assess for specific career and/or transition planning?

  16. Phases of Career Assessment = When assessment occurs Assessment prior to planning On-going assessment throughout planning, *instruction, career development, employment, and post-secondary preparation. Assessment and review to identify what worked, what didn’t, and what to do next. * instruction includes all school curricula, extra- curricular activities, community participation, etc.

  17. Career Development “….is a lifelong process of developmental experiences that focuses on seeking, obtaining and processing information about self, occupational educational alternatives [options] life styles, and role options.”Hansen, 1976 “…is the process through which people come to understand themselves as they relate to the world of work and their role in it.”NOICC, 1992 Assessment occurs within this process.

  18. Career Development in Education When provided in schools & integrated in learning Career awareness Career exploration Career preparation Career synthesis and assimilation Career advancement and change Not always linear, but mosaic within spheres of change—a reiterative process

  19. Assess within a Career Development Context Career Journey 19

  20. Do these phases/stages sound familiar? • Similar to the PA CEW Standards • Was described earlier in the week Results in • Success for students • Productivity for employers • Health for nations

  21. Community College Advanced Learning Professional Technical 4 Year College/ University Entry High School Career Cluster Selection, Advanced Academic Skills Related Work Experience Middle School Career Exploration Academic Foundations Job Shadowing & Mentoring S C A N S S C A N S Elementary School Career Awareness & Self-awareness

  22. SCANS (Secretary’s Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills) The Secretary's Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills (SCANS) identifies the level of skills required to enter employment, including define the skills needed for employment; propose acceptable levels of proficiency; suggest effective ways to assess proficiency.

  23. SCANS (Secretary’s Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills) These workplace essential skills and the associated rating scales can be utilized to measure youth progress, thereby holding the standard expectation for youth with and without disabilities. Workplace Essential Skills are identified as workplace competencies and foundations skills, also referred to as “Workplace Know-How.” Teaching the Scans Competencies: 23

  24. Workplace Know-How: The Foundation Competence requires: Basic Skills: reading, writing, arithmetic and mathematics, speaking and listening; Thinking Skills: thinking creatively, making decisions, solving problems, seeing things in the mind’s eye, knowing how to learn, and reasoning; Personal Qualities: individual responsibility, self-esteem, sociability, self-management and integrity.

  25. Workplace Know-How: SCANS Competencies Effective workers can productively use: Resources: allocating time, money, materials, space, staff; Interpersonal Skills: working on teams, teaching others, serving customers, leading, negotiating, and working well with people from culturally diverse backgrounds; Information: acquiring and evaluating data, organizing and maintaining files, interpreting and communicating, and using computers to process information;

  26. Workplace Know-How: SCANS Competencies Effective workers can productively use: Systems: understanding social, organizational, and technological systems, monitoring and correcting performance, and designing or improving systems; Technology: selecting equipment and tools, applying technology to specific tasks, and maintaining and troubleshooting technologies.

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  28. Assess within the demands of work • Secretaries’ Commission on Achieving Necessary Skills ( • 21st Century Skills ( • Equipped for the Future (though for adult education, relevant: • Are They Really Ready to Work? (Workforce Readiness Institute, )

  29. Re-define Assessment Reframe how we think: To assess means “to sit beside” (Latin) To assess means “to prize” (French) To assess means “to learn” (Latin) Try to avoid mass assessment as much as possible

  30. While Reframing—Think about Intelligence Differently The ability to solve problems, or to create products, that are valued within one or more cultural settings (Gardner, 1985) Our intellectual abilities are inextricably bound to the contexts in which we live—we cannot separate them (Gardner, 1993) Successful intelligence is to “think well” in 3 different ways (Sternberg, 1991)

  31. Triarchic and Successful Intelligence: (this is intuitive to many) Analytical: Componential—information processing: meta-components, performance components, knowledge-acquisition components Creative: Experiential—dealing with new tasks, automatic information processing to solve problems Practical: Contextual—functioning to adapt to the external world: adapting to, shaping, or selecting new environments One way, analytical, may not be the most valued in real life. Robert Sternberg, 1991

  32. How will you assess for these types of intelligence? • Sternberg’s?? • Gardners’s?? • In classes? • Outside of classes? • Who can assist? Plan with your team.

  33. What is career assessment? Someone from the audience??

  34. Three Levels of Assessment Screening and Needs Assessment Exploration Comprehensive Assessment (e.g., vocational evaluation)

  35. Levels of assessment Level One—Needs Assessment or Screening: For everyone The initial process designed to arrive at a decision for providing additional services. This assessment typically consists of interviews, limited questionnaires, inventories), and reviewing background information. If more information is needed or questions emerge, Level Two should be initiated.

  36. Levels of assessment: Level Two—Exploratory: For some This intermediate process involves detailed review of background information, in-depth vocational interviewing and counseling, and/or additional psychometrics or career exploration. It may also include transferable skills analysis, job matching, and labor market investigation, and/or community mapping. If more information is needed or questions emerge, Level Three should be initiated.

  37. Levels of assessment: Level Three—comprehensive career assessment (or vocational evaluation): for individuals facing the greatest transition, career, and vocational challenges or barriers. This process systematically uses real or simulated work as the focal point for assessment and career exploration. One purpose is to assist individuals in career and vocational development. The profiler(or vocational evaluator) synthesizes data from all team members, including if necessary, medical, psychological, economic, cultural, social and vocational information.

  38. Levels of Transition, Career & Vocational Assessment Levels of Service • Level III: comprehensive career assessment/vocational evaluation. • LevelII: diagnostic and prognostic, exploration, go onto next level if more information is needed to make decisions. • Level I: make quick decisions; minimal assessment required, go on to next level if more information is required.

  39. Who Provides Three Levels of Services? Counselors Teachers, including CTE Instructors Community service providers Employers or service learning supervisors Work experience coordinators Vocational Evaluators or Assessment Specialists Transition coordinators (for students with disabilities) Parents and family members Youth Others who have relevant experience, vested interest in the student, and have received some type of orientation or training.

  40. Which levels of career assessment do you provide and to which students? Work in your teams to answer these two questions

  41. Framework for Transition and Career Assessment • Examples of an Individual’s Attributes • Interests • Level of Career Development • Level of Career Maturity • Temperaments • Skills • Preferences (Learning styles, etc.) • Needs • Strengths • Attitudes • Aptitudes • Values & Satisfiers • Examples of Ecological Attributes • Environments • Circumstances • Relationships • Situations • Resources (including support networks) 42 Individual + Ecology = Congruence

  42. Assess the individualand all attributes Motivators Interests Values Abilities and “can do’s” Learning style preferences Multiple intelligences Worker traits and behaviors Aptitudes Potential barriers to transition goals Goals Strengths Needs Functional levels Level of self-determination Level of career development & maturity Self-concept & esteem Assitive technology needs

  43. Assess the individual’s ecologies Present, Past, and Future Environments Circumstances Situations Relationships Personal Support Systems Resources (vocational, community, financial, governmental, educational, etc.)

  44. Ecological Career Assessment • Finances and/or means for living • Scholarships, loans, etc. • Transportation • Social Support Networks • Living situation • Advocate(s) & ‘Touchstone’ • Employment • Healthcare

  45. What process do you have in place currently? • To assess the student’s attributes? • To assess the student’s present and future ecologies? • To determine if assessment was useful and generated needed information for planning and decision making? Who can provide this data?

  46. Triangulation of Methods and Information Expressed Tested Current Relevant Valid Demonstrated

  47. Triangulation in Community Based Vocational Assessment

  48. Universal Guidelines for Assessment Principles of Vocational Evaluation: Use a variety of methods & techniques Triangulate findings Behavior observation & personal interaction are essential to the process Process is on-going & developmental Is required to make decisions & plan Never stands alone—it is integral to larger service systems or processes