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Episode 2 (May 27, 2014) – Roberta Neault



Roberta-NeaultRoberta Neault is President of Life Strategies Ltd. Roberta is an award-winning career counsellor and counsellor-educator. She is the co-author of the Career Engagement model, and has written many practical guides and workbooks for career practitioners and clients in transition. She is also the Associate Dean of the Faculty of Behavioural Sciences at Yorkville University, and she divides her time between teaching, counselling/coaching, research, writing and presentations within Canada and around the globe.

Roberta’s chapter in the Career Development Practice in Canada textbook is “Theoretical Foundations of Career Development.” She recently completed a term as editor of the Journal of Employment Counseling and the final issue under her leadership was “Thoughts on Theories” — a compilation of new articles from authors of many of the theories referenced in her chapter in the textbook.

Topics covered in the podcast include:

  • What is a career development theory and what is intended to do (and why a jigsaw puzzle is such a good analogy)
  • Why some career development practitioners don’t consider the use of theories as important to their work
  • Are earlier career development theories, such as Parson’s Trait-Factor Theory and Holland’s Theory of Vocational Types, still relevant today?
  • The continuing popularity of Super’s Life Stages approach – and why he was ahead of his time
  • How newer theories, such as Krumboltz’s Happenstance Theory or Bright and Pryor’s Chaos Theory, can help career development professionals support their clients
  • What can a theory like Arthur and Collins’ Culture-Infused Counselling tell us about the cultural beliefs of career development professionals themselves?
  • Models of career responsiveness and how they relate to the constantly changing environment and its effect on individual career choice
  • Why there seems to be a surge of interest in career development theory when it isn’t always integrated into practice
  • Some first steps that career professionals can take to ensure that career theory is applied in their everyday activities
  • Where is career development theory going next? What’s needed in the field?
Norman Valdez

1 Comment

  1. Meghan Unick
    June 30, 2014, 11:32 pm   / 

    Interesting to hear a talk about theories in this field, something that isn’t talked or heard about much. One of the points that caught me in this talk was when, in the piece on cultural diversity and competency, Ms. Neault talked about a counselor not allowing a parent who came with the child into the room. I understand that some cultures may view careers (or whatever they may call them) as a very collectivist decision that involves the opinions of others…. but before giving this huge emphasis and consideration, I would want to be sure of what the client themselves want. Do THEY share these collectivist views, or would they like to make decisions about a career in a more individualistic, “western” way? While it is important to be culturally sensitive with clients, it is THE client that should come first, and for this reason, I can see why counselors may not want parents leaning over their child’s shoulders while they talk about their goals, aspirations and issues. Often times, their interests and aspirations do not agree with views of the parent, which is what could be causing their confusion and anguish in the first place; why increase those negative feelings we are trying to help counsel for? Younger students may be especially intimidated by this. The individual client should ultimately come first in practice (in my opinion!) Good talk though.

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