Tag Archives: assessment

Finding a Satisfying Career: Help is on the Way!

SDS_CoverOnly 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.

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The New Self-Directed Search, 5th Edition Now Available from PAR

sds-blog-picPAR 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.

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Concussion Recognition & Response Now Free to Download

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Have you downloaded our Concussion Recognition & Response™ (CRR) app yet? The app is now available free of charge for download through the Apple® App StoreSM and Google Play for use on your iPhone®, iPad®, iPod® Touch, Android™ device, or tablet!

The CRR app helps coaches and parents recognize whether an individual is exhibiting and/or reporting the signs of a concussion. In fewer than 5 minutes, a parent or coach can complete a checklist of signs and symptoms to help determine whether to seek medical attention. The app allows users to record pertinent information regarding the child with a suspected concussion, allowing them to easily share that information with health-care providers. Post-injury, it guides parents through follow-up treatment.

Click here to view the PARtners and Supporters of the CRR, including Hall of Fame NFL Quarterback Steve Young!

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We are pleased to announce the release of the new Self-Directed Search® (SDS®) Web site

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!

 

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Career Help for Returning Veterans

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!

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Job-Search Challenges Hinder Young Veterans’ Reintegration into Civilian Life

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.

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Innovative new measure assesses vocabulary and oral language development across the lifespan

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.

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Introduction to the ECAF-2 at ABVE Meeting, April 12-14

At the American Board of Vocational Experts (ABVE) Annual Meeting in Scottsdale, Arizona next month, psychologist and vocational expert James A. Athanasou, PhD, will present “The Use of the Earning Capacity Assessment Form™, 2nd Edition in a Medico-Legal Setting: An Australian Experience.”

The Earning Capacity Assessment Form-2nd Edition (ECAF-2™) by Michael Shahnasarian, PhD is used to estimate future loss of earning capacity following an injury or accident.  At the ABVE meeting, Dr. Athanasou will provide an introduction to the interpretation of the ECAF-2, along with a critique of its use in an Australian context. Data on Australian accident victims (N=33) from a medico-legal vocational assessment practice are used as a basis for his evaluation.

Dr. Athanasou’s presentation will take place on Saturday, April 13, at 3:00 pm.  Continuing Education Units will be available for conference attendees.

For more information or to register for the conference, visit the ABVE Web site.

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PAR concussion app receives recommendation from NFL star Steve Young

steveyoungPlus, 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!

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Introducing a Reduced Price for PAR Concussion Apps

When we introduced our two concussion apps, the Concussion Recognition and Response™ (CRR) and the Concussion Assessment & Response™: Sport Version (CARE), it was our hope that they would help as many children as possible to play sports safely. In order to reach a wider audience, we are pleased to announce that we will be reducing the price of the CRR app from $3.99 to 99 cents and the CARE from $9.99 to $4.99.

The CRR app helps parents and coaches to recognize when an individual is exhibiting signs and symptoms of a suspected concussion, helping them to respond quickly in less than five minutes.

The CARE app provides tools for athletic trainers, team physicians, and other qualified health care professionals to assess the likelihood of a concussion and respond appropriately in less than five minutes.

PAR donates 15 percent of the proceeds from the sale of this app to concussion research at the Children’s National Medical Center and the Matthew A. Gfeller Sport-Related Traumatic Brain Injury Research Center at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.

Visit the App Store or Google Play to download your copy of the app today!

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