The study of career development has become more imperative during a stretch of rising competition. Career entails how individuals animate their lives across different settings inclusive of their education, exertion and leisure time (Vaughan, 2011). Career paths of different individuals start from their first venture into the job market through to their final position before superannuation. Many theories have been developed to explain the concept of career development. However, this essay will focus on Donald Super’s theory approach to career development.
Staunton (2015) postulates that right occupation matches an individual’s personality and that occupation fits the person throughout his or her entire life. This theory focuses on how career divulges over the life span of an individual. Bjorklund and Bee (2008) argue that there are five vocational stages of career development according to Donald Super’s theory. The first stage is the growth stage which is 4-14 years, the second stage is the exploration stage 15-24 years, the third is the establishment stage 25-44 years, the fourth is the maintenance stage 45-65 years and the last stage is the disengagement stage or retirement which is 65 years and above.
I agree with the theory in that career development becomes more real as one advances in age. The older one becomes the more knowledgeable they are of what they want and can make a clear decision in their career paths. In my own case, as I grew older, I became more interested in many careers up to a time when I got the best career path to focus on. For example, at my teenage age I was torn in between pursuing mechanical engineering or social services. Finally, I was able to make a firm decision pursuing social services.
Bjorklund, B. R. & Bee, H. L. (2008). The Journey of Adulthood (6th Ed). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education.
Staunton, T. (2015 January 29). Donald Super’s Life Stage/Rainbow Theory – Theories Every Career Adviser Should Know. [Web Log]. Retrieved from https://runninginaforest.wordpress.com/2015/01/29/donald-supers-life-stage-rainbow-theory-theories-every-careers-adviser-should-know/
Vaughan, K. (2011). The Potential of Career Management Competencies for Renewed Focus and Direction in Career Education. The New Zealand Annual Review of Education, 20: 24-51.