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Person-environment fit psychology


Matching approaches to career development have a long history in our field.


Once you have engaged with the core materials, here are some suggestions for optional further reading:

  • Parsons (1909) for an early version of person-environment fit vocational guidance based on self awarenesss, opportunity awareness and decision-making.
  • Schein's (1978) work (and subsequent refinements) on career anchors for an alternative matching approach. He identifies 8 types of career anchor: Technical/functional competence; General managerial competence; Autonomy/independence; Security/stability; Entrepreneurial creativity; Sense of service/dedication to a cause; Pure challenge; and Lifestyle.
  • Kolb (1984) developed an eightfold matching approach to career development using an octagon linked to learning styles.
  • There is also a large number of career studies that propose various 'career types'. Although not strictly matching career development theories, they are nonetheless interesting for a contrast to Holland. For examples, see Summary section.