Career Counseling

Career counseling is one of several interventions used to assist clients with career issues and problems. Other in terventions include career appraisal and testing and the use of computer-assisted career guidance systems, the Internet, job simulations, gaming, and a variety of self-directed initiatives designed to help clients clarify their personal strengths and weaknesses, as well as their aptitudes, interests, values, personality types, and aspirations. Both self-directed and counselor-directed processes focus on helping the client explore available jobs, occupations, and other career options, evaluate them, and examine their congruence with client preferences and abilities.

Historically, career counseling was treated as separate from psychotherapy or personal counseling. Within the past two decades, however, the use and content of career counseling have broadened in their application throughout the life span to populations experiencing an increasingly comprehensive array of career concerns. Thus, whereas traditional models of career counseling tend to focus on career exploration, job selection, clarification of life and career goals, and improvement in decision-making skills, more recent applications of career counseling tend to address problems that require a fusion of career and personal counseling. In the latter approaches, career counseling may address providing support to persons experiencing job stress, job loss, and major (often involuntary) career transitions; helping clients deal with work adjustment issues, such as coping with negative relations with a supervisor or cowork-ers; teaching clients to deal with anger management; restructuring work dysfunctions; modifying irrational career beliefs; or resolving conflicts between work and family roles.

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