Journal of Vocational Behavior vol:68 issue:2 pages:189-204
This study investigated high school students' process of choosing a study in higher education, using a longitudinal design. A sample of 535 adolescents participated at the beginning, middle, and end of Grade 12. Latent curve modeling revealed evidence for a mean developmental increase in the career decisional tasks of orientation, exploration, decisional status, and commitment. In general, the growth trajectories were in line with theoretical models in which orientation and broad exploration are important at the beginning of the career decision-making process whereas in-depth exploration and decisional status are considered important later on. Furthermore, the results showed substantial variability between adolescents in their initial levels or career decisional tasks and in the rate of change. Finally, growth in orientation related to growth in environmental and self-exploration, and growth in environmental exploration related to progress in commitment and decisional status. (c) 2005 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.