PARENTING EDUCATIONAL STYLES AND CAREER EXPLORATION BELIEFS AND BEHAVIOURS OF PORTUGUESE ADOLESCENTS
Families have a key-role in the adolescents’ career decision-making process (Faria, 2008). On the one hand, adolescents widely recognize the positive influence that parents have in their career development (Birk & Blimline, 1984, Otto, 2000), in particular, regarding the process of information exploration about themselves, and also about academic and/or professional opportunities (Pinto & Soares, 2001). On the other hand, parents appreciate the opportunities they have to support their children’s career development (Pinto & Soares, 2001; Soares, 1998). In this sense, it is widely recognized that families and parents in particular, constitute a powerful resource to enhance the goals of career education (Otto, 1984). This study aims to assess the relationship between parental educational styles and career exploration beliefs and behaviors in Portuguese adolescents. Participated in this study 296 adolescents, 109 girls (36.82%) and 187 boys (63.18%), aged between 15 and 21 years (µ=17.03±1.45), attending Portuguese public schools. Participants completed measures of responsiveness and demandingness of Parenting Styles Questionnaire (QEEP; Lamborn, Mounts, Steinberg & Dornbusch, 1991; adapted by Barbosa-Ducharne, Cruz, Martinho & Grande, 2006), to the assessment of parental educational styles, and measures of employment outlook, certainty of exploration outcomes, external instrumentality, internal instrumentality, importance of preferred position, self-exploration, environment exploration, intended-systematic exploration, and amount of information of Career Exploration Survey (CES; Stumpf, Colarelli & Hartman, 1983; adapted Taveira, 1997), to assess the career exploration beliefs and behaviors. Regression analysis results indicate a significant relationship between the parenting styles and the career exploration dimensions. Implications are drawn to the development of career interventions which consider the families’ involvement, in order to improve the commitment of the adolescents, as well as, the quality of the decision-making process.