The Career Development of Adolescent Mothers: Research to Practice
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The culturally sensitive framework was used in two studies conducted to better understand the career development of adolescent mothers. The first was a content analysis designed to provide a better understanding of the published literature and to direct a research study. Content analysis findings revealed the need to develop and implement comprehensive programs for adolescent mothers that are strength-based, responsive to areas of need, and foster career development skills/knowledge and resiliency. Using the results of the content analysis, a study was designed to examine the relationships among career adaptability, resiliency, and perceived obstacles to career development with a convenience sample of adolescent mothers. Results indicated that these adolescent mothers were similar to non-mothering peers in the planning and decision making dimensions of career adaptability but lower in exploration. Traits of personal resiliency and emotional reactivity were comparable to non-mothering peers, but relational resiliency was lower. Obstacles most often cited as impeding career development were pressing immediate needs and educational/career related concerns.
Finally, the need to bridge the research to practice gap is discussed including considerations related to practitioners, organizations, and communication. In an effort to bridge the research to practice gap, the Interactive Systems Framework (ISF) is proposed as a model for communicating with practitioners through Synthesis and Translation, Support, and Delivery systems. The model is presented as an example for sharing with practitioners a culturally sensitive framework on the career adaptability of adolescent mothers supported by dissemination and implementation of research findings.
- Doctoral Dissertations