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Assessment as an Integral Part of Career Counseling

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Assessment for Career Counselor
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Assessment for Career Counselor
Career assessment is a process of assessing a person’s interests, skills, personality traits, and values. A person can discover what career suits them best by taking an assessment. If a person’s scores are high in all the areas of assessment, they are assured the job suits them. A career evaluation process involves completing career assessments. These assessments are usually administered by a career counselor. The assessments are not tests since there are no right or wrong answers. The assessment allows a person to see their scores in various careers based on how they answer questions regarding their interests, skills, values and personality traits. Most people use this as a means to make solid career choices (Deborah, 2013).
Process of Assessment Standardization is a way to establish uniform procedures to be used in an assessment. Assessment results should be as objective as possible in order to be considered valid and meaningful. Standardized assessment can be ensured by procedures before, during and after testing. (American Speech- Language-Hearing Association, 2015)
Before Testing
Test developers should provide evidence of what the test measures and the strengths and limitations of the test including the level of precision of test scores. The content and skills that are to be tested are selected and the tests are developed. The students should well prepared with practice tests, answer sheets, manuals and score reports. The testing environment should be well selected. For a standardized assessment it should be given to a group of bout twenty five students. Each groups should have a test administrator who is familiar to the students. The test administrator are responsible for preparing the students. Students should be provided with all the basic information such as the venue of the assessment, level of performance expected and how the results will be used. (American Psychological Association, 2015)
During Testing Test administrators should know how to administrator tests correctly and fairly. Students should be provided with clear instructions on how to answer the questions including the equipment and materials they need. There should reasonable guidelines on how to assess disabled people including whether they need special accommodations. A suitable testing environment should be created. For example, students should be arranged separately in a way that they cannot cheat during their assessment. The environment should be free of any disturbances to be conducive for taking the assessment. During the tests, the administrators should move around to make sure students follow instructions for example, move around the room. Students should also be encouraged to attempt as many questions as they can. Test administrators should have procedures and guidelines to monitor the accuracy of the process. (American Psychological Association, 2015)
After Testing Test administrators should provide accurate test results and help the student interpret them correctly. They should accurately check the student’s identifying information for accuracy. Disabled students should have their results fairly marked as the rest of the students. For example, blind students can have their results changed to machine-scoreable answers. (American Psychological Association, 2015) Purposes of Assessment
Understanding personal and work values are important before beginning any job search. A person’s life experiences such as upbringing, gender, education, culture and other related variables shape their values. A person’s values explain their judgment, preferences, and choices. There are five important characteristics of values. Values are beliefs, they relate to a desirable end of state behavior, they guide evaluation of events, they remain unchanged over a period and context and they are ordered based on their importance. Making career and life choices that are in line with a person’s values ensures personal satisfaction and happiness. Values can be divided into personal, life, and work values. Personal values are those that matter most in a person’s life. Work values are those that contribute to job satisfaction such as achievements (Bowling Green State University, 2015).
Personality traits are identified by a person’s preferences for recreational activities, hobbies, choice of school subjects and work. There are six different types of personality: Realistic, investigative, artistic, social, enterprise and conventional. A person’s parents, peers, culture and physical environment shape their experiences. A person learns to prefer certain activities over others trough their experiences (Bowling Green State University, 2015). Some people exhibit characteristics of different personality traits, but only one or two characteristics are dominant. Working in the environment similar to a person’s personality traits makes a person more satisfied with the job. People with realistic traits tend to enjoy the outdoors and an active lifestyle. Such people prefer to work with tools, machines, and such objects. They have mechanical, technical and athletic abilities, and they prefer to use ordered problem-solving techniques. Such people have careers like carpenters, archeologist, laboratory technicians, Computer analyst, software technicians, and mechanical engineers.
People with investigative traits are described as abstract problem solvers who prefer observation and investigation and tend to have scientific, mathematical and analytic abilities; solving problems by gathering and analyzing data. Such people have careers such as geologist, chemist, economist, meteorologist and electric engineer. People with artistic traits are said to be creative, ambiguous, and unsystematic who value imagination and prefer to solve problems innovatively. They have careers such as actor, editor, architect, interior designer and music teacher. People with social traits enjoy collaborating and working with others, hence prefer to solve problems by working with other people in careers such as historian, librarian, detective, medical assistants and therapist. People with enterprising traits enjoy persuading others and are viewed as confident and popular, possessing leadership skills. Such people have careers such as entrepreneur, credit analyst, banker and fashion coordinator. People with conventional skills enjoy systematic things and order, preferring to solve problems by following specific procedures, and they possess clerical and numerical skills. Such people have careers such as an accountant, investment analyst, expeditor, and an inspector (Bowling Green State University, 2015).
Skills enable one perform a task effectively and are learned through education, training, and experience. In the career field, having skills is having the knowledge required and the ability to apply that knowledge in a job. A Person’s heredity, cultural influences, education, the environment, and experiences shape their job skills. Skills are divided into three types: work content, self-management and functional. Work content require specialized training in order to learn certain procedures or subject matter such as graphic design or programming in java. By evaluating topics studied, hobbies, the past and current jobs it is possible to identify work content skills. Self-management skills are more like personality traits and are acquired early in life as a person learns to adapt to their environment, for example, competent, sociable and dependable. Such skill are important in the job field and are essential for success in a job. Functional skills are acquired talents and abilities which are developed and refined by education, experience, and practice. For example, managing, problem-solving, researching and writing. Such skills are applicable in various jobs and career fields (Bowling Green State University, 2015).
Professional Responsibilities
Counselors are supposed to provide good quality care. They should also be aware of their professional competence and the boundaries of their practices. A counselor should only practice based on their level of education, experience, and training. They should only accept jobs that they are qualified to undertake given their experience, training, and education. Counselors should keep proper records of their work with clients unless there are sufficient reasons why not to keep records. The records should be accurate and respectful of clients. These records should also be protected from unauthorized disclosure (British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy, 2010).
Like most employees in the country, counselors are supposed to meet their public responsibilities. They should not engage in activities that are against the law or have such activities happen in their knowledge. For example, they should not allow sexual harassment or such related acts. Also, when sharing information with third parties such as courts, insurance companies the counselors should provide accurate and honest information. Counselors should also not exploit the relationships they have with their clients. Since they are aware of their influential position to their clients, they should not exploit the trust and dependency of the client on them (American Mental Health Counselors Association, 2010).
When working with other counselors, the professional relationship should be in a mutual respectful manner. Communication between colleagues about clients should be respectful, purposeful, and consistent with the confidences declared to the clients. Counselors should also not allow their professional relationships with their colleagues to be prejudiced by their personal views (British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy, 2010).
Ethical Responsibilities
Being trustworthy is important in resolving ethical issues regardless of the career field. For counselors, being trustworthy requires one to act according to the trust placed in them. They should also prevent the disclosure of any confidential information about clients. Respect for clients’ right to be self-governing is also one of the ethical responsibilities. According to this principle, it is important for a client to participate in counseling voluntarily. Respecting this principle means counselors seek freely given informed consent, protect confidentiality and inform clients of any cases of conflicts of interest. The principle also prevents the manipulation of clients even for beneficial reasons (British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy, 2010).
Non-maleficence is a commitment to avoiding harm to the client. It involves avoiding financial, emotional, and sexual or any form of exploitation. A counselor is ethically responsible to mitigate harm caused to their client even if the harm was unavoidable and unintended. Counselors also have the responsibility to challenge the incompetence or malpractice of others and to help with any investigations concerning a professional practice that would discredit the profession.
A counselor is also required to be just and fair to all clients and to respect their human rights. They should also remain alert to the potential conflicts between legal and ethical obligations. Being committed to fairness requires a counselor to appreciate the differences between people and to avoid discriminating people who are contrary to their personal and social characteristics. Counselors should ensure a fair provision of counseling services appropriate to the client’s needs (British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy, 2010).

American Mental Health Counselors Association. (2010). Principles of AMHCA Code of Ethics. Retrieved from
American Speech- Language-Hearing Association. (2015). Assessment. Retrieved from
American Psychological Association. (2015). Code of Fair Testing Practices in Education. Retrieved from
Bowling Green State University. (2015). Self-Assessment. Retrieved from
British Association for Counselling & Psychotherapy. (2010). Ethical Principles of Counselling and Psychotherapy. Retrieved from
Deborah, K. (2013). Career Assessment. Retrieved from
Zunker, V. G. (2011). Career Counseling: A Holistic Approach (8th ed.). Belmomt, CA: Cengage Learning.…...

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