An independent evaluation of the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude
Battery (ASVAB) Career Exploration Program was conducted using
nationally representative samples of high school students. The sample
consisted of current ASVAB Program participants (n = 255) and two
control groups of nonparticipants (n = 233, n = 189). A pretest-posttest
design showed that participation in the ASVAB Program increased career
exploration knowledge and reduced diffusion and approach-approach forms
of career indecision, as assessed by the Career Decision Scale (S.
The Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) Career
Exploration Program is one of the largest career exploration programs in
the world. Annually, it serves between 800,000 and 900,000 high school
and postsecondary students in more than 14,000 schools nationwide. This
means that more than one fourth of all high school seniors will have
participated in the ASVAB Program during their high school years (Baker,
Since its inception in 1968, the ASVAB Program has undergone
considerable and substantial revision. The current version, fielded in
1992, is a cooperative endeavor between the nation's schools and
the Department of Defense (DoD). The ASVAB Program provides a
comprehensive vocational assessment package at no cost to participating
schools or to their students. Funded entirely by the DoD, this
comprehensive package contains two major assessment instruments and a
number of exercises that help students identify and investigate
occupations for which they show interest and ability. The ASVAB Program
fulfills two major purposes. First, the program provides age and
developmentally appropriate materials to support high school and
postsecondary educational and career counseling. In this regard, the
ASVAB Program assists students in planning for their post-high school
years. Whether these plans include the pursuit of postsecondary
education, job training opportunities, or immediate entry into the world
of work, the ASVAB Program provides materials to enhance students'
career exploration and career choices. Second, the program is useful to
the military services as an aid in the process of identifying interested
students who meet the qualifications for entrance into the U.S. Armed
Forces (Defense Manpower Data Center, 1995).
In 1995, the DoD contracted with the American Institutes of
Research to conduct a thorough review and evaluation of the ASVAB Career
Exploration Program. This evaluation focused on the program's
influence on student career choice and development, program
implementation, the quality of the career guidance materials and
components, the adequacy of the technical underpinnings of the program,
and the program's effect on military recruiting. Questionnaires and
interviews were used to collect the relevant data from nationally
representative samples of nonparticipating students, current-year
program participants, prior-year program participants, and high school
counselors. In general, the findings indicated that although there are
substantial gender differences in why students elect to participate in
the ASVAB Program, about three quarters of both male and female
adolescents participate because they want to engage in career
exploration. Consistent with this, about a third of the students who
elect not to participate do so because they fail to see the relevancy of
the ASVAB Program to their career goals and plans. Compared with their
nonparticipating peers, the students who participated indicated an
increase in several career development areas during the course of this
study. For example, they reported relative gains in self-knowledge,
occupational knowledge, and ways to connect the two together.
Furthermore, although students' attitudes and thoughts may have
changed considerably because of participation, their career exploration
behavior did not change. The only behavior that was found to increase
more for participants than for nonparticipants was interaction with
recruiters. Complete details of this evaluation are available elsewhere
(Defense Manpower Data Center, 2000).
A technical document no longer available to the public (Levine,
Huberman, & Wall, 1996) and a vocational newsletter news brief
(Wall, 1996) reported the effects of the ASVAB Program on career
exploration and career indecision. Using the same evaluation data, the
present study differs from these previous studies in two important ways.
First, rather than examine the career exploration items separately, the
items were combined to create a Career Exploration Knowledge Scale. The
use of this scale provides a more coherent and systematic analysis of
the ASVAB Program's effect on career exploration. Second, the
previous reports analyzed the Career Decision Scale (CDS; Osipow, 1986)
as a unidimensional measure of career indecision. In contrast, the
present study relied on the four factor analytically derived CDS
subscales reported by Vondracek and his colleagues (Schulenberg,
Shimizu, Vondracek, & Hostetler, 1988; Shimizu, Vondracek,
Schulenberg, & Hostetler, 1988; Vondracek, Hostetler, Schulenberg,
& Shimizu, 1990).
ASVAB Career Exploration Program
The ASVAB Career Exploration Program was designed to teach career
exploration skills useful both for entry into the workforce and for
continued career development. The program was designed for flexible use
so that it could fit the needs of the schools and the students who
participate in the program. The ASVAB Program can be integrated with
other career education and development programs, or it can be the
foundation on which further career education and development activities
can stand. Designed for optimal use by high school sophomores, juniors,
seniors, and students in postsecondary schools, the program is rooted in
the trait-and-factor approach first articulated by Parsons (1909). By
completing interest, aptitude, and work value measures, students can
gain a broader sense of self-knowledge. Knowledge of the world of work
comes from the extensive information on a diverse set of jobs catalogued
by the ASVAB Program. This information consists of the Realistic,
Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising, Conventional (RIASEC)
interest code (Holland, 1985) for the job; the typical cognitive demands
required for entry into and success in the job; and the typical work
values held by job incumbents. Finally, the "true logic" that
relates people to careers is provided through the OCCU-FIND exercise, in
which students find careers that match their own ability, interest, and
work value characteristics.
The program relies on the ASVAB (Defense Manpower Data Center,
1995) and the Interest-Finder (IF; Wall, Wise, & Baker, 1996) to
provide information about students' academic abilities and career
interests, respectively. The ASVAB is the most widely used multiple
aptitude test battery in the United States (Defense Manpower Data
Center, 1995). The 10 ASVAB subtests (General Science, Arithmetic
Reasoning, Word Knowledge, Paragraph Comprehension, Numerical
Operations, Coding Speed, Auto & Shop Information, Mathematics
Knowledge, Mechanical Comprehension, and Electronics Information)
provide a broad view of students' aptitudes. Students' scores
are reported as both same grade/same sex and same grade/opposite sex
percentile scores. Three composites--Verbal Ability (VA), Math Ability
(MA), and Academic Ability (AA)--are reported to students as same
grade/same sex and same grade/opposite sex percentiles. The composite
AA, which is a combination of the VA and MA, assesses potential for
formal education. The IF is based on Holland's (1985) theory of
career choice. Wall et al. (1996) and Wall and Baker (1997) provide
considerable evidence in support of the content, construct, and
predictive validity of the IF as a measure of the RIASEC constructs. For
example, the six scales are highly reliable, with alpha coefficients
ranging from .93 to .97. Item-level factor analysis demonstrates the
existence of six factors, with each factor corresponding to one of the
IF scales and with each factor uniquely representing the corresponding
RIASEC domain. The IF has a hexagonal shape and structure, and the
scales correlate between .68 and .78 with their corresponding Strong
Interest Inventory (SII) RIASEC scales (Hansen & Campbell, 1985) and
significantly with the appropriate SII Basic Interest scales. Although
gender, ethnicity, and socioeconomic status differences exist on some of
the IF scales, these differences are relatively small when compared with
the differences found on the SII. IF scales are related both to courses
taken in high school and to students' expected future careers.
Students' personal preferences in several domains (e.g., work
values, post-high school education, interest in military service) are
also assessed to gain a more complete picture of the students'
goals and plans.
From the ASVAB, IF, and personal preferences, students gain
considerable self-relevant information. Students then complete the
OCCU-FIND exercise, which provides the link from the self-relevant
personal characteristics to occupational characteristics. In this
exercise, students use a special marker to highlight their top three
RIASEC codes, their ASVAB AA primary and secondary codes, their four
highest work values, their desire for further education, and whether
they are interested in military career opportunities. Latent image stars
appear that show students the "matching" occupations, based on
the highlighted characteristics. From this, students gain a sense of how
well suited they might be for each of the 201 OCCU-FIND occupations.
Students are then directed to find those occupations for which there is
a good match and to investigate them further in the Occupational Outlook
Handbook (Department of Labor, 1994) and in Military Careers (Department
of Defense, 1995). Students are encouraged to complete additional
career-related exercises that are designed to help them develop career
From the student's perspective, participation in the ASVAB
Program is straightforward. Students sign up to take the ASVAB
administered at their high school. When they sign up, they receive the
Student and Parent Guide. This guide explains the ASVAB Program in
language understandable to students and their families. After completing
the ASVAB, students also sign up for the post-ASVAB test interpretation.
In this session, students receive their ASVAB scores, complete the IF
and other exercises in the student workbook, and complete the OCCU-FIND
exercises. Throughout the test interpretation session, ASVAB Program
personnel help students interpret their scores and the meaning of those
scores in the context of students' subsequent career exploration
and development. Typically, ASVAB scores are available within 10 days of
completing the test, and the posttest interpretation session generally
takes place shortly after the test results are returned to the schools.
The program relies on the strength of the materials it provides to
participants, their schools, and their families. Materials designed for
use by school counselors include an educator and counselor guide, a
counselor manual, a technical manual, and a book outlining military
careers. Students receive the Student and Parent Guide, an ASVAB
workbook, and their own individualized ASVAB test results. Counselors,
students, and their parents receive a pamphlet on the basic skills of
career exploration. These materials meet or exceed the psychometric,
test use, and career development standards established by the American
Counseling Association, American Psychological Association, Association
for Assessment in Counseling, and National Career Development
Association (DuBois, 1995).
An Intervention That Reduces Career Indecision
Spokane (1991) defined a career intervention as "any activity
(treatment or effort) designed to enhance a person's career
development or to enable that person to make more effective career
decisions" (p. 22). From this perspective, participation in the
ASVAB Program clearly constitutes a career intervention. Based on a
trait-and-factor approach, the ASVAB Program is designed to increase
participants' career relevant self-knowledge, knowledge of the
world of work, and how to link the two. Because career exploration
knowledge is inversely related to career indecision (Betz & Voyten,
1997), reduced career indecision would be a likely outcome of
participating in the ASVAB Program. Because career indecision is a
multifaceted construct, it seems reasonable to expect that the ASVAB
Program would have differential effects across those facets. Osipow,
Carney, and Barak (1976) suggested that career indecision can be
conceptualized in terms of four components: (a) lack of structure for
understanding and making career choices, (b) external barriers that
prevent or inhibit the implementation of a preferred career choice, (c)
multipotentiality that arises from the conflict between equally
attractive choices, and (d) conflict with others over these choices.
Although Osipow (1994) disagreed, item-level factor analysis tends to
confirm the presence of these factors in the CDS (Spokane, 1991).
Research Questions and Hypotheses
The knowledge that ASVAB participants gain both about themselves
and about the world of work should help to demystify the process of
career exploration (Parsons, 1909). Consequently, students should (a)
gain a greater degree of confidence about their ability to engage the
career process and (b) have a starting point from which to launch an
appropriate process of career exploration. The result would be a reduced
sense of career indecision due both to a lack of structure and to
multipotentiality. This study was designed to provide answers to two
questions: (a) Do participants gain self-knowledge relevant to career
exploration? and (b) Does participation in the ASVAB Program decrease
career indecision that is due to lack of structure or multipotentiality
but not to external barriers or conflict?
Sampling Design Plan
A multistage random sampling plan was used to select and recruit
the sample. First, the country was stratified into the 64 regions
corresponding to the 64 ASVAB Career Exploration Program regional
offices. Random selection procedures selected 48 regions from which to
invite schools to participate in this study. The first 3 regions were
assigned to a "participating school" condition while the
fourth was assigned to the "nonparticipating" school
condition. This helped to provide geographic balance and helped to
ensure that the schools were representative of the population of U.S.
high schools. In each of these selected regions, random selection
procedures identified a first-, second-, and third-choice school for
potential inclusion in the study. If a first-choice school elected not
to participate, the second- and third-choice schools were recruited as
necessary, resulting in 48 high schools in the sample frame (35 first-,
8 second-, and 5 third-choice schools). Finally, individual students
were selected for inclusion. At the ASVAB schools, 36 students were
randomly selected for the study. At the non-ASVAB schools, similar
procedures were used to select 24 students for the study. When students
preferred not to participate, random selection was used to identify and
recruit replacement students in both sets of schools. In all, 971
students were solicited for this study. Of these, 725 (75%) participated
in both the pretest and the posttest phase of this study. A number of
respondents (n = 48, 5%) were eliminated because of (a) too much missing
data in the questionnaire, (b) obvious inattention to instructions, or
(c) violating the CDS validity recommendations. This left 677 (70%)
participants in this study, which lasted one semester.
Current program participants (Group A; n = 255) were students who
participated in the ASVAB program. There were two groups of
nonparticipants: Group B students (n = 233) were from the same schools
from which Group A respondents were sampled; Group C students (n = 189)
were sampled from schools not participating in the ASVAB program. Groups
B and C functioned as control groups.
About half (53%, n = 362) of the sample were boys and about half
(47%, n = 315) were girls. There was no evidence of gender differences
across the three groups, [chi square](2, n = 677) = .07, p = .964. Most
of the students were either seniors (39%, n = 267) or juniors (51%, n =
347), with only a few sophomores (9%, n = 63). Although the grade-level
composition differed significantly across the three groups, [chi
square](4, n = 677) = 88.99, p = .001, Cramer's effect size
statistic was small (V = .24), indicating only a weak grade-level
difference. Although a large proportion of the sample was Caucasian
(72%, n = 484), the sample also included African Americans (12%, n =
81), Hispanics (9%, n = 61), Asian or Pacific Islanders (6%, n = 40),
and American Indians (2%, n = 11). There was no evidence of racial
differences across the three groups, [chi square](8, n = 677) = 12.20, p
= .142. About half of the students considered themselves to be in the
college track (49%, n = 332), and about a third of the students (33%, n
= 222) indicated they were in a "general track." Only about a
seventh of the students (16%, n = 110) indicated that they were in a
vocational or occupational track; few students indicated that their high
school careers did not match any of these tracks (2%, n = 13). These
differences were also statistically significant, [chi square](6, n =
677) = 63.83, p = .001, although the associated Cramer's V
indicated that the differences were weak at best (V = .18).
Questionnaires were administered to all study respondents. ASVAB
Program participants (Group A) received one form of the questionnaire,
whereas the nonparticipant groups (Groups B and C) received a different
form of the questionnaire. The two forms contained a common set of
questions concerning basic demographic and current educational
characteristics and questions to assess respondents' career
exploration knowledge, career exploration behavior, and attitudes toward
the military. Group A respondents also answered pretest questions about
how they had heard about the ASVAB Program and why they participated.
They answered posttest questions about their evaluation of the program
and how participation may have affected their career paths and
trajectories. Group B respondents answered questions about why they
chose not to participate in the ASVAB Program. Group C respondents
answered no additional questions. Respondents in all groups completed
the CDS (Osipow, 1986), one of the most widely cited and well-used
measures in the career development field (Osipow, 1994). Because the
focus of this study was on adolescent career indecision, only the career
exploration and CDS sections were analyzed.
Respondents answered five items assessing how well they could match
their own skills and abilities with job requirements. The items assessed
(a) career-relevant self-knowledge ("I know what kind of career I
want to pursue after I leave high school," "I have a good idea
of my abilities and skills"), (b) occupational knowledge ("I
know what is required to succeed in different careers"), and (c)
ways to connect the two ("I know how to find out about what types
of jobs are best for me," "I have a good idea of the kinds of
jobs I would be good at"). The responses to these 4-point Likert
questions were combined to form a Career Exploration Knowledge Scale
(CEKS; [alpha] = .78; see Table 1).
All study respondents completed the CDS (Osipow, 1986). The CDS
assesses four distinct types of career indecision by using the
Diffusion, Support, Approach-Approach, and External Barriers subscales
(Schulenberg et al., 1988; Shimizu et al., 1988; Vondracek et al.,
1990). The Diffusion subscale assesses feelings of confusion and
discouragement and the lack of information about making career
decisions. The Support subscale assesses uncertainty concerning the
career decision-making process and the need for additional support in
making initial career decisions. The Approach--Approach subscale
assesses the degree to which individuals experience an
approach--approach conflict over choosing from among a number of equally
attractive careers. The External Barriers subscale assesses the
perception of external barriers to career decision making and the lack
of interest in making career decisions. Pretest, posttest, and gain
scores were calculated according to the scoring procedures provided by
Vondracek et al. For each type, the possible scores range from 1 (not at
all like me) to 4 (exactly like me), with higher values indicative of
higher levels of career indecision. The subscale correlations ranged
from .26 (Diffusion with Support) to .57 (Diffusion with External
Barriers), which are similar in magnitude to the correlations reported
(.36-.58) by Vondracek et al. Although somewhat low (see Table 1), the
alpha reliability estimates (.61-.76) were of sufficient magnitude to
warrant the use of the four subscales in the analyses.
Before data collection, all potential respondents received a packet
of material that contained an explanation of the study's purpose
and parental consent forms. Respondents who returned the completed
consent forms also completed the appropriate pretest questionnaire in
group settings during January 1995. Within a week of completing the
pretest questionnaires, Group A respondents took part in the ASVAB
Program by completing the ASVAB, receiving their scores, and taking part
in the post--ASVAB interpretation session. All participants completed
the posttest questionnaires in May 1995. This study used a
quasi-experimental design to study the effects of participation in the
ASVAB Program. Because random assignment was not used, group equivalency
at the beginning of the study could not be guaranteed. Factors such as
participating in other career development programs or engaging in other
career development activities were not controlled during the study.
CEKS pretest scores (see Table 1) were submitted to a one-way
analysis of variance (ANOVA) to determine pretest differences among the
groups. The highly significant result, F(2, 673) = 12.21, p = .001,
substantiated that initial group differences were present. Dunnett tests
revealed significantly lower scores for Group A than for Group B (p =
.046) and Group C (p = .049) students. This initial difference
invalidates the use of an analysis of covariance because the covariate
(pretest score) was not statistically independent of the treatment
(group membership). In these situations, Maxwell and Delaney (1990)
recommended analysis of the gain scores. Consequently, a Participation
Group x Gender x Ethnicity x School Program x Grade ANOVA analyzed the
CEKS gain scores. Respondents with missing data on one or more of these
variables (n = 15, 2%) were excluded from this analysis. Because none of
the between-group interaction effects approached statistical
significance, the main effect model was used to assess pretest
--posttest changes (see Maxwell & Delaney, 1990). Only the
differences due to participation group were significant, F(2, 661) =
10.20, p = .001. Dunnett tests revealed significantly greater positive
change (p = .001) for the ASVAB group (Group A) than for either of the
nonparticipant control groups (Groups B and C).
CDS subscale pretest scores (see Table 1) were submitted to a
multivariate analysis of variance (MANOVA) to determine pretest
differences among the groups. The significant Wilks's A = .97, F(2,
673) = 2.27, p = .020 substantiated an initial multivariate difference
among the groups. This difference invalidates the use of a multivariate
analysis of covariance because the covariates (pretest scores) were not
statistically independent of the treatment (group membership).
Therefore, gain scores were submitted to a Participation Group x Gender
x Ethnicity x School Program x Grade MANOVA. Because none of the
interaction effects approached significance, the main effect model was
used to assess these pretest--posttest changes. Only the participation
group difference was found to be significant, F(8, 1298) = 2.66, p =
.007. Follow-up univariate ANOVA revealed significant differences on the
Diffusion subscale, F(2,657), = 3.40, p = .034, and Approach--Approach
subscale, F(2, 657) = 5.10, p .006. Dunnett tests revealed significantly
greater positive change (p < .02) for the ASVAB group (Group A) than
for either of the nonparticipant control groups (Groups B and C) on the
Approach--Approach subscale. Dunnett tests indicated greater positive
change for the ASVAB group (Group A) than for one control group (Group
C, p = .021) and a nearly significant change compared with the other
control group (Group B, p = .058) on the Diffusion subscale. Significant
differences failed to emerge on the Support subscale, F(2, 657) = 0.74,
p = .476, and the External Barriers subscale, F(2, 657) = 1.81, p =
The results of this study suggest that participation in the ASVAB
Career Exploration Program lowers certain kinds of career indecision
while it increases aspects of career exploration knowledge. These
findings lend credence to the view that the ASVAB Career Exploration
Program functions as an age-appropriate career intervention (Spokane,
1991) for high school students. Career exploration encompasses
activities directed toward enhancing knowledge of the self and knowledge
of the environment. The individual engages in these activities as a
means of self-assessment and to gather information from the environment
that will aid in the decision-making, job entry, and vocational
adjustment processes (Blustein & Flum, 1999). Such exploration is
important and necessary to reduce career indecision, because indecision
may best be reduced by obtaining appropriate knowledge of self, work,
and ways to connect the two (Parsons, 1909). By focusing participants on
their own career-relevant characteristics in a systematic fashion, the
ASVAB Program may help provide participants with an appropriate sense of
direction as they begin or continue their career-relevant deliberations.
Such direction should tend to decrease certain kinds of career
indecision while not affecting other types at all.
From this vantage point, it is interesting that the diffusion and
approach--approach aspects of career indecision were influenced by
program participation. One would expect increased self-relevant
knowledge to reduce both of these types of career indecision. By
increasing students' sense of career relevant self-knowledge, the
ASVAB Program should tend to decrease participants' sense of
diffusion. In this context, diffusion refers to the confusion and
discouragement associated with the lack of relevant information about
making career decisions. Students' enhanced self-knowledge, coupled
with a new way of approaching career decision-making activities, should
almost certainly reduce the negative affect associated with diffusion.
In a similar fashion, an increased sense of career relevant
self-knowledge should also help students begin to resolve the approach-
approach conflict experienced when trying to choose from among a number
of equally attractive career alternatives. It also seems apparent why
program partic ipation did not influence either the support or external
barrier form of career indecision. By focusing students' attention
on personal and job characteristics, the issues that surround parental
and familial support and external barriers to success are addressed only
indirectly. For example, although the ASVAB Program strongly advises
students to use parents, family, family friends, and others close to
them to enhance their career development, the program does not compel
students to do so. By advising students to investigate jobs that match
their own personal characteristics, the ASVAB Program at best only
invites students to consider the presence of external barriers in their
deliberations. Adequate treatment of the influence of external barriers
on career development is often cited as one of the major failings of the
trait-and-factor approaches (Blustein & Ellis, 2000; Brown, 2000).
Other interpretations are possible, though, given the data and the
findings. For example, because this was not an experimental study, it
was not possible to control for initial student differences in career
exploration knowledge or career indecision. ASVAB participants may have
started the study with less career exploration knowledge and with higher
levels of career indecision than did their peers. If their posttest
scores showed no such differences, one could argue that the ASVAB
Program merely ameliorated and removed those initial differences. If so,
it is possible that ASVAB Program outcomes depend on students'
initial reasons for participating in the program. Some students, for
example, may elect not to participate because they already have a
relatively clear idea of their post--high school plans and endeavors.
For these students, the program may seem irrelevant. Others may view it
as a military test and, therefore, not of interest to them. In both of
these scenarios, students seem already to be malting c areer development
decisions based on their self-understanding and interests. Students who
elect to participate may already have career development concerns. For
these students, the ASVAB Program may be particularly attractive as a
way of addressing some of these concerns. This interpretation,
consistent with a self-determination perspective (Blustein & Flum,
1999), is also consistent with the findings. For example, ASVAB
participants (Group A) had higher pretest levels of diffusion and
approach--approach types of career indecision than did the two control
groups. As such, perhaps participation may merely have ameliorated their
initial deficit, making them more like their peers on the posttest than
on the pretest. However, even if this is the case, it suggests that
students recognized that the ASVAB Program could have a positive effect
on their subsequent career development.
There were a number of limitations in this study. In addition to
the initial differences between the groups, this was not an experiment.
Study participants were not placed in groups by random assignment, and
no attempts were made to ensure that the groups did not engage in
additional career development activities that might have influenced
their posttest outcomes. As such, it is possible that the findings
merely reflect the effect of these additional career development
activities. This threat to validity, however, is not compelling because
it would have required that the ASVAB participants engage in additional
career development activities, whereas participants in the two control
groups would not have engaged in these activities. Findings reported
elsewhere (Defense Manpower Data Center, 2000) show that the groups did
not differ in their career-related behaviors during the course of the
Overall, the findings lend support to the efficacy of the ASVAB
Career Exploration Program both in enhancing self-knowledge associated
with career exploration and in reducing the experience of career
indecision among high school students. For high school career
counselors, the findings have clear implications. First, the findings
provide solid evidence that high school students benefit by
participating in such a broad-based career intervention program. Second,
students who participate in the ASVAB Program can expect to gain career
relevant self-knowledge and to experience a reduction in their career
indecision. That the program is free of cost both to schools and to
students is an important point as well, given the relatively poor
funding available for such programs in the schools.
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Harley B. Baker, Defense Manpower Data Center, Seaside, Galifornia.
Harley E. Baker is now at the Psychology Department California State
University Channel Islands. The author thanks Alan Nicewander at the
Defense Manpower Data Center, Janet Wall at Sage Solutions, and Roger
Levine and Mette Huberman at the American Institutes for Research for
their substantial contributions to this study. The views expressed here
are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the
Department of Defense. Correspondence concerning this article should be
addressed to Harley E. Baker, Psychology Department, California State
University Channel Islands, One University Drive, Camarillo, CA 93012
Career Exploration Knowledge Scale (CEKS) and Career Decision Scale
(CDS) Subscale Pretest and Posttest Means and Standard Deviations
Test Overall (a) Group A (b)
Administration [alpha] M SD M
CEKS (e) .78 2.91 .52 2.80
Diffusion .76 2.00 .85 2.11
Support .61 2.15 .74 2.27
Approach .69 2.44 .81 2.57
Barriers .64 1.73 .65 1.76
CEKS (e) .83 2.98 .53 3.00
Diffusion .76 1.97 .81 1.98
Support .65 2.12 .74 2.20
Approach .72 2.35 .81 2.36
Barriers .69 1.77 .65 1.80
Test Group A Group B (e) Group C (d)
Administration SD M SD M
CEKS (e) .51 2.93 .54 3.04
Diffusion .89 1.93 .84 1.92
Support .70 2.08 .75 2.09
Approach .80 2.36 .82 2.36
Barriers .64 1.73 .65 1.68
CEKS (e) .52 2.94 .58 3.01
Diffusion .79 1.94 .84 1.98
Support .70 2.03 .76 2.13
Approach .77 2.32 .85 2.38
Barriers .65 1.72 .60 1.79
Test Group C
CEKS (e) .47
CEKS (e) .49
Note. Group A = Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery Career
Exploration Program current year participants.
Group B = nonparticipants at participating schools.
Group C = nonparticipants at nonparticipating schools.
(a)N = 662.
(b)n = 246.
(c)n = 231.
(d)n = 185.
(e)Higher scores indicate more career exploration knowledge.
(f)Higher scores indicate more career indecision.