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Providing Career Consultancy & Development in Riyadh, Dissertation – Literature Example

Pages: 15

Words: 4140

Dissertation - Literature

Table of Content:

  1. Team Members ……………………..………………………………….Page 3
  2. Problem Area ………………..……………………………………….Page 3-5
  3. Aims…………………………………………………………………….Page 5
  4. Proposed Methods…………………………………………………….Page 5-6
  5. Proposed Time Frame………………………….…………………….Page 6-7
  6. Expected Outcomes…………………………………………………….Page 7
  7. Literature Review……………………………………………………Page 8-13
  8. References…………………………………………………………….Page 14

 

Aljohara Al-Saud, Saudi, born in 1984. Aljohara holds a BS degree of Computational Linguistics. Co-op was done in Banque Saudi Fransi for seven months in the IT Department. After receiving the BS, Aljohara worked as a KG Montessori English Teacher for six months, then as Teacher Assistant at Prince Sultan University for three years. After that Aljohara moved to Alfaisal University, and is currently working there as Executive Assistant of the Vice President of Advancement, Finance, and Administration.

Rahma Thaar, Saudi, born in 1976. Rahma holds an Associate Degree in Translation and a BA in Business Administration. For almost three years Rahma worked as a translator with some office tasks. Rahma then taught KG-2 at Abdul-Aziz International School for 7 years, then moved to Alfaisal International Academy and held the position of a manager in several departments, which lasted for almost two years. Next she held the position of principal at Abdul-Aziz International School. And now is a principal at Al-Hadara International School.

Abir Ashour, Canadian, Born in 1986. Abir holds a BS in Healthcare Management and a Diploma in Small Business Management and Esthetics. Abir has been working since the age of 16 which is the legal working age in Canada, alongside her education. Abir is currently working as an Academic Affairs and Assessment officer for the College of Medicine at Alfaisal University as she continues her graduate studies.

Problem Area

The area of concern in this review is career education. Specifically, there is a substantial deficiency when it comes to providing career consultancy and development in Saudi Arabia. As such, individuals tend to oscillate from one job to another with the ultimate goal of seeking a satisfactory position – a reality that remains elusive to many. For the vast majority of prospective and active employees, chasing after the perfect job opportunity, the searching process may only conclude in later years, when their aptitudes and qualifications no longer as attuned as they once were. Thus, based on robust experiences acquired throughout our career processes and personal observations, we see the escalating need and urge to provide such a service.

Part of the reason why many professionals struggle to identity their niche is rooted in their ability to identify their primary strengths in the first place. To that end, it is well recognized that personal development and individual aptitude is best nurtured during adolescent years, and as a result, it is important that young people are given ample opportunities at a young age to discover their myriad interests and talents. For this reason, the target our proposed business targets 10th graders (students roughly between the ages of 15-17) and their parents in Riyadh. The idea is for students to cover career differences before choosing their major, which happens in 10th grade here in Saudi Arabia.

In this program, the student is asked to write a battery of career and personal interest tests, and using psychometric analysis and basic algorithms, several matching careers options will be generated. The student will apply for job training/internships in up to three areas of their interest. This basic placement opportunity will not only provide the student with invaluable career insight and experience, it will also result in higher job efficiency and employee loyalty in their long-term, future careers. In addition, this project fosters community service and civic engagement in Saudi youth at a young age, encouraging them to give back to their rural and/or urban areas of living. Furthermore, it is vital for the economic and business sectors, as more focused employment will mean less unemployment and less work outcome deficiency, which will positively bolster the economy of Saudi Arabia and its strategic partners in the region.

This business must beat its competition; insight careers[1]. Some recruiting companies send applicants for a trial time. However, since most applicants in this case are never tested for the suitability of their traits and aptitudes, an interview is the only mean to be used. The proposed service is to combine services offered by different parties and launch it as blue-oceanic business in Saudi Arabia.

Some important factors that the business needs to consider include the right personnel, with the required qualifications and experience. Also the fields the business will cover include various tests – personality, career, learning techniques – and incorporate notable aspects of success for the business, including: efficiency, personnel, types of students, types of advisors, and how to meet the demands of students.

Aims

The aims for this business is providing guidance and professional advice to 10th graders from all backgrounds, ages, genders, and socioeconomic circumstances before they determine their academic majors. In addition, it will be seek to facilitate professional and personal development through setting career perspectives, improving skills and proficiencies, fostering professional qualities, and enhancing knowledge.

The goal is to develop, through proper education, goal-oriented students with panoply of skills and who possess the focus of mind and assertiveness to confidently seek their vocational passions.  This can only be achieved through a planned program that utilized advanced testing methodologies and training regimens. The service is to help the students make an informed decision about their future, starting from their field of study and ending with work options. Ultimately, this pathfinder aims to enable the future citizens to participate effectively in civil society.

Proposed Methods

The methods adopted will be primary and secondary. Primary data collection will be acquired through the use of questionnaires, career interest tests, career aptitude tests, training evaluation and feedback. The questionnaire will survey the students and their parents: (For example, is there any dream that the student is after? Is there any future plan that they have in mind? Does the student have the resources they need? Do they possess personal traits that are suitable for the job?)

Tests will be formulated to explore career interests and career aptitudes. A math whiz may enjoy computer software tasks but may be too active to be staying at a desk for long hours. A student whose dream to be a doctor and help patients may require help in acquiring the appropriate motor skills necessary for fine and delicate procedures. Thus, these tests will offer a preliminary diagnostic result that will be tremendously helpful in allowing students to identify – at a remarkably early stage in their personal and professional development – all the difficulties that may hinder their future success in various careers of choice.

Feedback and training evaluation on some jobs would be a practical and realistic proof for suitability of the desired job. Most career guidance revolves around the world use the technique of personal and career tests. Those tests may reveal a lot about the test taker, but a real trial of the job will result in a clearer vision, and this is a unique advantage for the proposed program.

Secondary data will be acquired by using data collected from previous experiences in the region and around the world. Institutions like Insight Careers will be a major source for data referral. Findings of researches and articles written about career guidance will also be sought.

Proposed Time Frame

The time allotted to accomplish this dissertation is eight months, starting in September 2011 till April 2012. Initially in August 2011 the group has gathered to agree on the project idea. Different ideas were proposed, all were in the field of education guidance, and finally it was agreed that the Saudi market really needs another thing that has not been tackled enough; career education.

The first two months will be dedicated to data collection. A search is currently in place for a provider who can supply such a service. The next step will be to contact different stakeholders, who include: governmental license issuers, competitors, high schools and companies which provide co-operative positions and internships. A closer study of such businesses is then applied to learn weaknesses and strengths. Meanwhile in September this proposal is being worked on to be submitted end of the same month.

The third month is for reviewing previous articles done around the issue of career guidance and its importance. Searching has started in the first month, and because it was hard to find such articles about Saudi career world, articles from other countries would be used for this purpose. At the same time the group will start formulating the tests, questionnaires and performance evaluation forms. It is important in this step to consult a psychologist and refer to precedents psychometric tests and their respective results. This is followed with applications, after which students are to be surveyed and tested and the results are drawn out. All designed work is to be referred to in the literature that will be submitted by the end of November.

Upon conferring the results, the next step, which takes place during the fourth month, is directing the participants to the companies that offer placements. During the training period, there will be a periodic follow up on the participants’ performances. Students and employers who are mutually satisfied are given the opportunity to resume their arrangement, while students whose trial is not successful are given the option to repeat the cycle of positioning and placement from the beginning. In this case, tests will be re-administered to the misplaced student, and it is an expectation that their answers to the test will be modified to reflect their incompatibility with their previous job. This will provide invaluable insight into the process of re-directing them to another job, in addition to providing the student with the opportunity to redefine their interests and ambitions.

The remaining period of four months will be dedicated towards conducting and finalizing a business plan and so all to be reflected in the final report. The business plan will encompass various segments that accurately depict our vision of the service provided and its necessities. The initial section will contain the executive summary with an overview of the business description, service, the market, competition, operations, management team, risk/opportunity, financial summary, and capital requirements. The executive summary will be followed by a detailed description and study of each component in addition to marketing strategies and sales, and development strategies for the business plan.

Upon completion of the business plan we will prepare a brief presentation summing up our vision, objectives and logistics in implementing a service that provides a career pathway to individuals at an adolescent period to enhance productivity in the workplace by utilizing employees to the best of their capabilities.

 Expected Outcomes

We expect that this project will shed a new light on the importance of reaching out to professionals at a young age in order to allow them to prepare themselves for successful career trajectories that are not riddled with ‘trial and error’. We are convinced that this will enhance individual success and generate significant revenue. After all, the goal of the business is to maximize profit and not just to break even. Additionally, the success of this model will likely result in future expansions of the business – a serious and important ambition – which will inevitably increase the market share of the business within a rapidly progressing economy.

The key to reaching these goals is to increase networking and develop strategic relationships with supporting businesses, policy makers, local staffing agencies, and of course, students at the elementary and high school stages of their education. When their complimentary interests are properly aligned, these stakeholders will function as an organic unit that not only works to develop a more dynamic and progressive economy, but also, a better future for society.

Literature Review

Situation Analysis of Technical Education and Vocational Training: A Case Study from Pakistan. (Shah et al., 2011)

The study conducted by Shah, et al., (2011) investigated the technical education and vocational training that is used to help people obtain employment and contribute to society. The study was based in Punjab, Pakistan.  The methods for the study consisted of 100 teachers who received a questionnaire containing 15 questions. The authors indicate that the questions were developed for a target group; however, there is no indication of the use in previous research. The authors do, however, indicate that the questionnaire was conducted as a pre-test in in-service training and updated accordingly. The authors do not indicate who took the pre-test and what information was changed.   The data analysis of the results was divided into four different parts.  The data analysis, however, did not contain the use of statistics or statistical power to confirm or validate their results.  The authors present the information as percentages based on their answers.  Perhaps a correlation analysis or ANOVA should have been performed in order to statistically prove results.

An Analysis of Guidance Services for Secondary School Students.  (Niwaz et al., 2010)

The study conducted by Niwaz et al., (2010) investigated educational guidance services in secondary schools in Rawalpindi, Pakistan.  The concept of their study was to evaluate the role that guidance serves played in helping individuals make the right educational choice.  The authors theorize on how the process of guidance helps individuals grow and develop educationally according to their socio-cultural background.  To further support their theory on educational guidance services, the authors conducted a literature review in their journal article to illustrate the effects guidance programs have students in secondary schools and how the effects are physical, emotional, social, vocational and academic.  The authors used a random sampling technique in their methods using all boys from secondary schools in the 10th class at both rural and urban areas. Three teachers and 10 students were randomly selected from each school, totaling 160 students and 48 teachers.  The sampling method in this study is sex bias. The authors only use boy students.  In addition, it is not noted if the teachers were male or female or both.  In addition, the authors gave a questionnaire (one for the teachers and a different one for the students).  There is no indication of whether the questionnaire had been used in a similar study.  The authors only indicate that the questionnaires were used in two different studies.  The results of the study indicated several different conclusions, such as the students wanted to share their personal problems with teachers, the teachers not helping students solve their problems and no guidance in their course selection.   The study also did not conduct a separate analysis between rural and urban schools.  It is possible that there is a difference in the teaching methods and student behavior in rural versus urban school and perhaps the authors should have conducted a correlation analysis between the results in rural versus urban school questionnaires.

Analysis of Vocational Training Facilities in Pakistan and Job Adjustment Problem of Special People. (Khatoon)

The study conducted by Khatoon investigated the types of vocational facilities and the level of training that is available for “special” people in Pakistan.  The author does not define “special” until the methodology section of the paper.  The author conducted the research by visiting the vocational training centers and schools and speaking with the school administrators.  The reasoning behind the study was that the author theorized that vocational training is an essential tool for integrating people into the society in Pakistan, in order for them to become a productive member of society.  The author wanted to find out how well the vocational training centers were providing proper training in order to prepare individuals for the job market.  The method for investigation indicates that the author used a sample size of 200 “special” individuals who have received vocational training. The finally explains “special”, meaning individuals with hearing problems, vision problem, handicapped and so forth. The author indicates that questions were given to the individuals; however, there is no indication that the questions were used together in a previous study.  This does not validate the use of the questions in this investigation.  Furthermore, it is not indicated the level of the questions and the capability of the people in answering the questions.  The results of the investigation were analyzed; however, there was no statistical analysis used and therefore, there is no validity to the investigation.  The author indicates that the study showed that almost half of the special individuals received vocational training from 6-12 months and that it was not sufficient enough for the individuals to receive the proper training.

Panorama Professionalizing Career Guidance (Cedefop, 2009)

The paper, “Panorama Professionalizing Career Guidance”, is a study that analyzed the current training from 30 different countries in regard to career guidance.  The authors state that reports from questionnaire response and notes were used from recent years through the Cedefop, OECD, the World Bank and ETF.   In addition, the methodology consisted of contacting representatives from each country, with the responses to the consultation analyzed.  Since they were consulting and reading questionnaires from different countries, the authors indicate that there was a language difficulty in interpretation for some documents.  They address this issue through the competence framework section.  The study supported the hypothesis that there is a need for career decision guidance.  It was indicated through their study that there should be policies implemented in each country in order to help individuals in need of decision making career skills.  In addition, it was indicated that every individual needs access to high quality career guidance.   Furthermore, the analysis concluded that each individual citizen needs to have an understanding of career management skills in order to support the need for career guidance.

Career Guidance a handbook or Policy Makers (OECD, 2004)

The handbook on career guidance was written in order to facilitate policy makers in their respective countries in order to develop a career guidance program as part of public policy.  The goal of the handbook was also to help the policy makers develop and communicate effective policies in regard to career guidance, training and employment.  The authors indicate the reason for the issue of this handbook is due to the increasing changes in education, training and employment processes, with career guidance as a focal point in the changing policies.  This paper, therefore, was not a review on literature or was there any type of research conducted.  The paper simply was a guide for effective career guidance in school systems.  The paper was effective in its goal, however.  The paper addressed different types of school systems and offered valuable resources for policy makers.

School-Based Career Development: A Synthesis of the Literature (Hughes and Mechur, 2004)

The study conducted by Hughes and Carp, (2004), investigated career development as an integral part of today’s youth. Hughes and Carp theorize that young people have the ambition to become educated with professional careers; however, they hypothesize that who students enter postsecondary education after high school and don’t graduate due to the lack of career guidance and counseling.  This study did not entail their own research. The study was a review on more than 50 studies on school-based guidance and career development.  The authors used ERIC and other electronic databases to conduct their search.  In addition, they consulted with the National Training Support Center (NTSC) and the Directors of America’s Career Resource Network (ACRN), as well as researchers and administrators in the career guidance field.  Since there were numerous of studies, the authors had to choose current research as well as look into other factors.  For instance, the authors do indicate that they chose studies according to external variables that could influence the outcome of the study, such as statistically controlled variables.  The analysis of the results was used using a meta-analysis.  The authors do explain the use of the meta-analysis and its usefulness to analyze a large number of studies on the same topic. The authors conclude that there is evidence that career guidance can positively influence a students’ career development.  The authors do back up their conclusions with results from previous literature as well.  This paper is a good analysis study of previous research in the career guidance field.  The paper can also help individuals who are conducting a study, for literature review purposes.

Outcomes from Career Information and Guidance Services (Maguire and Killeen, 2003) 

The study conducted by Maguire and Killeen (2003), was part of a study to evaluate the outcomes in guidance services delivery.  The goal of the paper was to investigate the different types of methods to measuring the outcome of career information and guidance delivery, as well as to provide examples of different approaches and outline policy priorities.  The authors describe different types of methods used in analyzing career guidance and show the difference between studies which test a hypothesis and those that do not.  In addition, they indicate the necessity for a research project to have a design that can have internal validity from the samples used.  Furthermore, they suggest designs that have been used with validity for  career guidance.  The results of the literature analysis indicated the need for research that is longitudinal and capable of identifying longer-term and more deep-seated effects.  In addition, it was noted to that the analysis of attitudinal shifts in perception of individuals.

Establishing Accountability Metrics for Evaluating the Impact of Career Guidance Services on Academic, Career Development and Workforce Readiness Outcomes. (Solberg et al.)

The purpose is to advocate for policies used in career guidance services.  In addition, the purpose is to assess if individual participation quality career guidance services as indicators of student academic outcomes.  The authors evaluate different guidance services and the quality of the designs based on the population it is serving.   The paper looks at the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development documents in which they identify six different populations in need for quality career guidance, such as school age youth and adolescents, at-risk youth, post-secondary age young adults, unemployed adults, employed adults and older adults.  The authors conclude in their evaluation that there are a number of studies that supported career guidance interventions in promoting career development.  In addition, the authors present their ideas on national consensus and the implementation of a national consensus in order to provide resources to help schools and organizations conduct their own guidance services.

Overview

Surprisingly, the majority of the studies did not use a validating research method.  Each of the studies reviewed dealt with the need for career guidance programs or policies; however, the methods did not consist of a statistical data analysis and therefore, the results of the study could not be validated as significant.  For instance, Shah et al., (2011) presented their data, almost as raw data.  In order to make a sound debate for the need for career guidance, the research methods should be carefully designed and manipulated.  In addition, the authors should evaluate previous research in order to find a design that is appropriate for their study or within the same topic.  As seen in Maguire and Killeen (2003), the paper offered numerous methods for measuring career guidance.

Other similarities existed between the studies in regard to literature reviews.  The studies based their study on the review of numerous studies within the career guidance field.  Therefore, there conclusions were based on the outcomes of previous conducted literature.  For instance, Solberg et al. concluded from their evaluation the need for guidance career development programs.  In addition, Hughes and Mechur (2004) conducted a review on 50 studies based on school guidance and career development.  All studies, however, did reach the same conclusion based on their theories regarding the need for career guidance programs.  It was indicated that individuals do benefit from career guidance and counseling programs.

 

References

Cedefop. (2009).  Professionalizing career guidance Practitioner competences and

qualification routes in Europe. Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities Cedefop panorama series; 164.

Hughes, KL., Karp, MM.  (2004).  School-Based Career Development: A Synthesis

of the Literature.  Institute on Education and the Economy Teachers College, Columbia University.  42pp. Retrieved from:

http://www.tc.columbia.edu/iee/PAPERS/CareerDevelopment02_04.pdf

Khatoon, A.  Analysis of Vocational Training Facilities in Pakistan and Job

Adjustment Problems of Special People.  Department Of Special Education. University of Karachi.  Retrieved from: http://www.uok.edu.pk/faculties/specialeducation/docs/sed.pdf.

Maguire, M. and Killeen, J.  (2003).  Outcomes from Career Information and

Guidance Services. National Institute for Careers Education and Counseling (NICEC).  25pp.

Niwaz, A., Hussain, MA., Dahar, MA., Zaman.  (2010).  An Analysis of Guidance

Services for Secondary School Students in Pakistan.  International Journal of Academic Research. 2(5):389-393.

Solberg, V.S., Wills, JL., Niles, SG.  Establishing Accountability Metrics for

Evaluating the Impact of Career Guidance Services on Academic, Career Development and Workforce Readiness Outcomes.

OECD. (2004).  Career Guidance a Handbook for Policy Makers. Organization for

Economic Co-Operation and Development the European Commission.

Shah, IH., Rahman, F., Ajmal, M., Hamidulla, H.  (2011). Situation Analysis of

Technical Education and Vocational Training: A Case Study from Pakistan. International Journal of Academic Research. 3(1): Part III.  Retrieved from: http://www.ijar.lit.az/pdf/9/2011(1-145).pdf.

Insight Careers. Insight Careers, 2010. Web. 15 Aug. 2011. <http://www.insightcareers.org/about.html>.

[1] Insight careers is a limited liability company (LLC) registered in Saudi Arabia. Insight was a brainchild of a psychology researcher at Stanford. The research matured to become the cornerstone of its career counseling program patented in the United States. The researcher is co-founder and partner at Insight and, along with a team of capable psychologists, continues to develop career oriented programs aimed at enhancing peoples’ academic and work life (Insight careers, 2010).

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