Only 45 percent of the working population in the U.S. are satisfied with their jobs, according to a recent survey of 5,000 households. To address this problem, people need tools to help identify careers that are a good fit for their interests and skills. The popular Self-Directed Search® (SDS®) from PAR provides a solution for today’s job seekers. The brand-new SDS 5th Edition is a 15-minute, self-administered test for those beginning their career search as well as those considering a career change.

“Taking the SDS is an important first step in developing a career plan that can prevent years of dissatisfaction on the job,” says SDS 5th Edition author Melissa Messer. “The SDS guides users toward careers that will help them meet their personal and financial goals and that they enjoy.”

According to Ms. Messer, no special training or qualifications are needed with the SDS; it is designed to be self-administered, self-scored, and self-interpreted. The SDS can be taken online; with paper and pencil; or via PARiConnect, PAR’s new online assessment system.

The SDS 5th Edition is based on Dr. John Holland’s theory that both people and work environments fit into six basic categories: Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising, and Conventional (known collectively as RIASEC). The SDS generates a three-letter Summary Code for each user, based on his or her aspirations, activities, competencies, and interest in different occupations. Users can match their Summary Codes to jobs in the Occupational Information Network (O*NET) database, which lists thousands of current jobs at all skill and education levels.

The SDS Web site has also been updated with new resources targeted to specific groups and a contemporary, easy-to-navigate user interface. The newly revised report includes an “at-a-glance” summary, and users can share their results via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more. The SDS 5th Edition is designed to work on mobile devices and tablets.

To learn more about the SDS 5th Edition or any of PAR’s other career or vocational products, visit www.parinc.com or call 1.800.331.8378.
PAR is delighted to announce the release of the new Self-Directed Search® (SDS®), 5th Edition, by John L. Holland, PhD, and Melissa A. Messer, MHS.

The Self-Directed Search (SDS), John Holland’s original gold-standard assessment and one of the most widely used career interest inventories in the world*, has been updated to meet the needs of today’s clients. Whether they are college students choosing a major, veterans entering the civilian job market, or adults pursuing a career change, individuals can use the SDS to learn about themselves and their career options.

Like its predecessors, the SDS 5th Edition is based on Holland’s theory that both people and work environments can be classified according to six basic types: Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising, and Conventional (known collectively as RIASEC). The SDS asks questions about the user’s aspirations, activities, competencies, and interest in different occupations, and from the responses it generates a three-letter Summary Code. Using the revised Occupations Finder, users can match their Summary Codes to jobs in the Occupational Information Network (O*NET) database, which lists thousands of current jobs at all skill and education levels.

No special training or qualifications are needed with the SDS; it is designed to be self-administered, self-scored, and self-interpreted.  The SDS can be taken on the internet, with paper and pencil, or via PARiConnect, PAR’s new online assessment system.

The SDS Web site has also been updated with new resources targeted to specific groups and a contemporary, easy-to-navigate user interface. The newly revised report includes an “at-a-glance” summary, and users can share their results via Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and more.  The SDS 5th Edition is designed to work on mobile devices and tablets.

To learn more about the SDS 5th Edition or any of PAR’s other career or vocational products, visit www.parinc.com or call 1.800.331.8378.

*The SDS has been used more than 35 million times and has been translated into more than 25 languages.
We are pleased to announce the release of the new Self-Directed Search® (SDS®) Web site.

The new SDS site has been completely revamped, enabling users not only to complete the test but also to learn more about the history, theory, and applications of the SDS. Targeted resource sections, supplemental information and links, case studies, and more are all swathed in a brand-new, contemporary design.

You can also visit www.self-directed-search.com using your tablet or mobile device—the site automatically adjusts its interface to your device’s size and specifications!

 
The transition from military career to civilian life can be a real challenge, and finding a good job is one of the most important factors in a veteran’s success. This month, PAR is pleased to introduce The Veterans and Military Occupations Finder™ (VMOF), a new product designed specifically to help veterans meet this challenge.

Working in conjunction with the Self-Directed Search® (SDS®), the VMOF allows users to explore career options by linking military occupation titles with civilian jobs. After taking the SDS, users can match their three-letter Holland Summary Code to Occupational Information Network (O*NET) career options and education requirements. The VMOF will help users to better understand how they can apply the skills they developed in the military to civilian occupations.

The VMOF includes two indexes. The first lists current Military Occupational Classifications (MOCs), along with corresponding two-letter Summary Codes, from each of the five branches of the military (Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force, and Coast Guard). The second lists MOCs from each of the five branches along with corresponding civilian occupations and their two-letter Summary Codes.

An online edition of the VMOF, which includes select portions of the print edition, is available at the newly revised SDS Web site; the full version is available in a print format.

The SDS will be featured at the National Career Development Association’s Global Conference in Boston next week! Visit PAR at Booth #12 to learn more about the VMOF and the upcoming SDS 5th Edition.

Some NCDA program highlights include:

Monday, July 8:


“Remembering John Holland and Furthering His Impact on Career Services” (3:00-4:10 p.m.)


“Understanding Relationships among Holland’s Self-Directed Search, the Career Thoughts Inventory, and the Career Tension Scale” (3:00-4:10 p.m.)


“The Development of the Working Styles Assessment” (4:30-5:40 p.m.)


Tuesday, July 9:


“Improving Career Interventions by Better Assessing Readiness for Decision Making” (3:00-4:10 p.m.)


Wednesday, July 10:


“The Development of a Revised Version of Holland’s Self-Directed Search” (8:00-9:00 a.m.)


We hope to see you at NCDA!
Figures on the rate of unemployment among veterans can be confusing as media outlets report only parts of the story. Although the overall unemployment rate among vets has dropped slightly in recent months, a March 2013 report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that for U.S. veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, the rate is 9.9%, about 2% higher than for the general population. In short, more than 200,000 veterans from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars are now unemployed (see the Harvard Kennedy School’s Research Roundup for a summary of recent studies on veterans and unemployment).

As a result of their military service, veterans often face additional obstacles that contribute to difficulties as they look for work. Conditions such as posttraumatic stress disorder, traumatic brain injury, and other physical and mental disorders are common among veterans. A recent study found a direct correlation between depression and unemployment rates among veterans; the good news is that improved depression status (following treatment at VA hospitals) was associated with an increased likelihood of becoming employed.

The U.S. government, the Department of Defense, and other public and private institutions offer some support for veterans seeking civilian careers. For example, the revised G.I. Bill focuses on retraining, and tax credits are now available for employers who hire veterans. However, many veterans’ organizations are calling for more help for young vets transitioning from active duty.

For veterans, active-duty military personnel, and the career counselors who work with them, PAR is developing a new component of the popular Self-Directed Search® (SDS®) designed specifically to support the transition from a military career to a civilian career. Scheduled to release in July, the Veterans and Military Occupations Finder™ matches an individual’s military occupation code with civilian career possibilities. Used with the SDS, this new tool will help veterans explore their interests and capitalize on the skills they developed in the military. Finding a good job is one of the most important factors in a veteran’s successful transition to civilian life, and the Veterans and Military Occupations Finder provides a starting point for that search. To learn more, visit the SDS Web site and look for updates about the release of this new addition to the SDS product line.
PAR is pleased to announce the release of the Vocabulary Assessment Scales™–Expressive (VAS™-E) and Vocabulary Assessment Scales™–Receptive (VAS™-R). Together, these measures present full-color photographs to evaluate the breadth of an individual’s vocabulary and oral language development throughout the lifespan.

• Choose between paper or digital stimuli. The VAS stimulus books are available digitally, for use on a tablet, or on paper, for traditional administration.

• Experience greater ecological validity. Full-color photographs provide the highest degree of realism possible.

• Obtain an enhanced skill assessment. Composite and discrepancy scores enhance the user’s ability to interpret expressive and receptive scores.

• Monitor effectiveness of interventions. Reliable change scores enable the user to measure growth over time and in response to targeted interventions; equivalent, co-normed forms reduce the occurrence of practice effects that can result from repeated administrations.

• Assess throughout the lifespan. Offering both age- and grade-based norms, the VAS-E and VAS-R are suitable for evaluating individuals ages 2.5 to 95 years in clinical, school, occupational, and industrial settings.

To learn more about the VAS or to order it today, visit www.parinc.com or call 1.800.331.8378.
To mark Brain Injury Awareness Month, app is free through the end of March

PAR’s Concussion Recognition and Response (CRR) app, designed to help coaches and parents recognize whether an individual is exhibiting or reporting the signs and symptoms of a concussion, recently received accolades from former NFL quarterback Steve Young.

In addition, to recognize Brain Injury Awareness Month, the CRR app will be available for download free until the end of March.

The CRR app was developed by concussion experts Gerard A. Gioia and Jason Mihalik. It provides instruction during the assessment of an injury, a return-to-play guide, and extensive concussion information.

“As a former NFL player, national spokesperson for the Positive Coaching Alliance, and someone who has personally experienced the significant effects of a concussion, I believe every parent of a young athlete and coaches should be fully aware of the signs and symptoms of a concussion in a young athlete,” Young said. “To help them act and respond to this injury the right way, they need to have proper tools. Based on the great CDC Heads Up work that Dr. Gioia helped to create, the Concussion Recognition & Response App gives parents and coaches a great tool to identify kids with suspected concussions. It also is a great resource of information about concussions and what parents can do to help their child recover from the injury. This app should be a necessary part of every comprehensive youth concussion management and awareness program.”

Young played 14 seasons of professional football, all but two for the San Francisco 49ers. He retired in 1999 with the highest career passer rating among retired players and six NFL passing titles under his belt.

The app is available free through the end of March from the Apple® App StoreSM or Google Play.

Youth concussions are a hot topic in the news, with more and more emphasis being placed on athletes’ safety. Recent research found that even one concussion can result in long-term brain damage. What do you think? Leave a comment and get the conversation started!
We are delighted to introduce you to PARiConnect, an online assessment platform that gives you access to your favorite PAR instruments through the convenience of a secure, easy-to-use Web site.

PARiConnect is an intuitive system that allows you to focus on what is most important to you—whether that means scoring your favorite PAR assessments quickly and easily, administering instruments through our secure online system, or allowing our powerful interpretive logic help formulate your treatment plans. Whether you are a researcher looking for a quick way to score paper-and-pencil administrations, a clinician in need of immediate interpretation, or a school psychologist wanting to use e-mail to send assessments, PARiConnect is a highly individualized and customizable interface that brings your work to you, wherever you are.

We are so proud of the PARiConnect system that we would like to offer you three free assessments and three free reports so you can try it without risk. Register today and experience PARiConnect yourself.

Visit www.pariconnect.com to learn more or call 1.855.856.4266 to register.
PAR is pleased to announce the release of the Standardized Assessment of Miranda Abilities™ (SAMA™).The SAMA is designed to help forensic psychologists evaluate a defendant’s understanding of his or her Miranda rights.

Since the watershed decision of Miranda v. Arizona in 1966, the Supreme Court has continued to define what is legally required for Miranda warnings and waivers. Today, Miranda warnings are required to address five issues:

  • the right to silence;

  • the risk of waiving the right to silence;

  • the right to counsel;

  • the availability of counsel for indigent defendants; and

  • the option to reassert these rights at any time.


In addition, any waiver of Miranda rights must be made voluntarily, knowingly, and intelligently.

Developed by Richard Rogers, PhD, ABPP, one of the leading experts on Miranda law in the U.S, the SAMA includes five measures that assess vocabulary and comprehension of the wording typically used in Miranda warnings as well as the knowledge, beliefs, misconceptions, and reasoning skills that may affect an individual’s choice to exercise or waive his or her rights. Highly valid and reliable, the SAMA provides a clear picture of a defendant’s thinking in regard to Miranda decision-making.

To learn more about the SAMA or any of PAR’s other forensic/legal products, visit www.parinc.com or call 1.800.331.8378.
One of the world’s most popular and trusted assessments of cognitive impairment is now available as a convenient app for smartphones and tablets. Like the paper-and-pencil version, the app can be used to screen for cognitive impairment, to select patients for clinical trials research in dementia treatment, or to track patients’ progress over time.

The MMSE/MMSE-2 app includes a brief instructional video that walks users through the features of the app. In addition to the original MMSE, both standard and brief versions of the MMSE-2 are available, enabling health care providers to choose the version that will suit each client. Scoring is done automatically, and patient records can be uploaded directly to an electronic medical records (EMR) system or e-mailed to appropriate personnel. Equivalent, alternate forms of the MMSE-2 decrease the possibility of practice effects that can occur over serial examinations. The app also includes norms for the MMSE and the MMSE-2, by age and education level.

The MMSE/MMSE-2 app is available to qualified health care professionals from the Apple® App StoreSM (for the iPhone® or iPad®) and from Google Play (for Android™ devices). The app is free—users pay only for administrations, which start at $1.25 each.