IMPACT OF VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE ON CAREER CHOICE OF SECONDARY STUDENTS

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CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the Study Vocational guidance and counseling services are essential tools in student development especially during adolescent stage. Adolescent stage is characterized by rapid growth and change: socially, spiritually, physically, morally and intellectually. Most of adolescents are in secondary schools, that is why guidance and counseling services are very essential. According to Bark (2003), guidance and counseling are the assistances made available by qualified and trained persons to an individual of any age to help him to manage his own life activities, develop his own points of view, make his own decisions and carry his own burden. In addition, Braddock (2001) states that, the purpose of guidance and counseling in schools is to improve academic achievement, foster positive study attitudes and habits, increase acquisitions and application of conflict resolution skills, and decrease school dropouts. Lack of guidance and counseling in adolescence has resulted to increase in unpleasant outcomes in the society. These include school dropouts, drug abuse, crimes, and even failure to secure jobs.

Anastasi (1990) also adds that the task of educational guidance and counseling is to enable a student to adjust himself to his studies by improving his study attitude and removing subject matter difficulties. When guidance and counseling services is lacking in schools, students’ adaptation becomes difficult thus leading to poor performance, misbehavior and dropout. According to Odeke (1996), without sound guidance and counseling, many students loose direction and engage themselves in bad behaviors such as drug abuse and alcohol indulgence, missing classes, dropout and so on; as a result they lack both focus and direction resulting to total failure in life. In this regard, students need guidance and direction to study and choose career.

The necessity of vocational guidance could not be over emphasized that there is the need to put in place a mechanism such as, guidance and counselling in every educational setting to help meet students’ educational, personal-social, and vocational needs. Such guidance services assist students to take meaningful decisions and make positive adjustments in life. Hence, guidance which is a helping service aims at behavioral change toward a functional life. Within the guidance programme are the following services: appraisal, information, counselling, placement, orientation, consultation, referral and follow-up.
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IMPACT OF VOCATIONAL GUIDANCE ON CAREER CHOICE OF SECONDARY STUDENTS