Date of Award

6-2004

Degree Name

Doctor of Education

Department

Teaching, Learning, and Leadership (to 2007)

Abstract

In 1997, the Michigan Department of Career Development unveiled the Michigan Career Preparation System, which provided guidelines and funds for school districts to offer career education opportunities for students. Since high school counselors are oftentimes viewed as the primary provider of careerinformation to students, this study examined their perceptions of Michigan's Career Preparation System and the impact this initiative has had on studentsand educators. To gather this information, a 13-question survey was designed and distributed to a randomly selected group of high school counselors. Theresearch also provided a framework for understanding all of the components of both the Michigan Comprehensive Guidance and Counseling Program and Michigan's Career Preparation System.

The findings indicated that counselors perceive the two primary initiatives, Career Pathways and Education Development Plans (EDPs), as being "somewhat important" to "important" overall in helping students make future career plans. Michigan counselors also perceived their level of involvement (100% "somewhat involved to highly involved") in career preparation as being higher than that of principals and teachers. Although this high level of involvement forcounselors was not surprising, it was discovered through related research that students viewed parents as having the most influence over them when making career decisions. Thus, one of the conclusions was that for Career Preparation to have the greatest impact, counselors should develop programs for parents to assist them when working with their children in career preparation.

In 2002, Neumark and Allen conducted a study of Michigan's Career Preparation System and concluded that the system was quite positive overall, although they also indicated that additional research would be necessary as there is no comparable data. This research mirrors their findings in that counselors do perceive the Career Preparation System as having a positive impact, but also echoes the statement that additional research in this area would be beneficial.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access

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