The social cognitive career theory (SCCT) introduced by Lent, Brown, and Hackett focuses on people’s career-related interests and choices. According to Niles and Harris-Bowlsbey (2017), the founders of the SCCT model posited that people have varied career-related interests and undertake personalized and flexible career choices to attain career triumph and stability. The theory states that people’s intellectual aspects influence their career development and decision-making processes. The author adds that the SCCT model complements the trait-factor model and developmental models of career behavior.
Career development theories can be expanded to tackle diversity issues in the counseling profession in the modern context. Niles and Harris-Bowlsbey (2017, p. 97) note that due to the American population sustaining gradual diversity, “the multicultural counseling movement has matured from an exclusive focus on race/ethnicity to the inclusion of all cultural dimensions such as gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, spirituality, religion, age, and social class.” Professionals need to integrate culturally responsive career intervention programs because environments can influence how human beings develop careers. For example, when fewer resources are available to the black community than the white community, the latter population will likely attain better success (Niles & Harris-Bowlsbey, 2017). Similarly, the social framework within which people from a particular gender, sexual orientation, disability, spirituality, religion, age, or social class can affect their career progress. Hence, a focus on how models like the SCCT can assimilate better personal and societal factors for career development in diverse communities is vital.
The SCCT model focuses on career development by prioritizing performance attainment and the capacity to continually overcome barriers. When a person performs well in their career, it is often triggered by their aptitude, self-efficacy, overall expectations, and objectives (Niles & Harris-Bowlsbey, 2017). The SCCT model further analyses participants’ capacity to avoid career obstacles by utilizing the decisional balance sheet procedure. Clients are required to state their ideal job options and examine the costs of following each option.
Despite the theory’s widespread use, there should be an added focus on its application within the Asian community. In particular, Niles and Harris-Bowlsbey (2017) recommend research into the involvement of Asian parents in Asian American scholars’ self-perception, outcome prospects, and interests within stereotypical and non-stereotypical careers. I would recommend a focus on how Asians perceive themselves in occupations such as farming and psychology. In the United States, some Asian American communities have found solace in the California fields where they practice farming. Secondly, because psychology is frowned upon in Asian countries, most Asian Americans are likely to shun the profession, warranting further research into the area. By focusing on these subjects, future research will help delineate the applicability of the SCCT model in Asian American communities.
Niles, S. G., & Harris-Bowlsbey, J. (2017). Career development interventions (5th ed.). Pearson.