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The relationship between self-efficacy, locus of control and work personality. (Self-Efficacy and Locus of Control).

Over the past 10 to 15 years, research has suggested that our economy has undergone a shift from a production orientation This article or section may contain original research or unverified claims.

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 to an emphasis on service and knowledge (Drucker Drucker may refer to a number of persons (in alphabetic order) :
  • Adam Drucker, known as Doseone, an American rapper and poet.
  • Eugene Drucker, born in 1952, a member of the Emerson String Quartet
, 1993) and a shift from task and volume to an emphasis on process and value (Hammer & Champy, 1993; Wirth Wirth is a German surname which may refer to any of the following individuals:
  • Ann Fisher-Wirth, American poet and university professor
  • Christian Wirth, notorious member of the Nazi Schutzstaffel (SS) involved in the T4 euthanasia program
  • Christian Wirth (a.k.a.
, 1992). Specifically, researchers have found that workers are asked to make more decisions on their own, to work as members of teams, and to organize around the work process (Ryan Ryan may refer to: Places
  • Division of Ryan, an electoral district in the Australian House of Representatives, in Queensland
  • Ryan, Iowa
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Film and television
, 1995). This shift in the economy has placed an increased importance on the worker's ability to effectively use cognitive and interpersonal skills "Interpersonal skills" refers to mental and communicative algorithms applied during social communications and interactions in order to reach certain effects or results. The term "interpersonal skills" is used often in business contexts to refer to the measure of a person's ability  even for low paying and entry-level positions (Wilson, 1997). The increased requirement for cognitive and interpersonal skills by employers has and will continue to impact the process of career, employment, and rehabilitation counseling rehabilitation counseling,
n counseling started in the United States in 1920 to assist individuals disabled by industrial accidents; originally included physical, psychologic, and occupational training; expanded over the next 70 years and laid the
. These labor market labor market A place where labor is exchanged for wages; an LM is defined by geography, education and technical expertise, occupation, licensure or certification requirements, and job experience  and economic trends would suggest that counselors may need to direct interventions at work adjustment to assist individuals in the career development and job placement process. Hershenson (1996a) suggests work adjustment consists of an interaction between the work environment and the three individual domains of work personality, work competencies, and work goals. These three individual domains develop sequentially. Moreover, it is hypothesized that there is a reciprocal Bilateral; two-sided; mutual; interchanged.

Reciprocal obligations are duties owed by one individual to another and vice versa. A reciprocal contract is one in which the parties enter into mutual agreements.
 effect among the three domains. The purpose of this research is to examine the theoretical link and the reciprocal effect between the individual domains of work personality and work competencies that develop early in life and are directly linked to task performance. A review of Hershenson's theory of work adjustment will define and clarify the relationship between these variables. Further, Rotter's (1966) theory of locus of control locus of control
A theoretical construct designed to assess a person's perceived control over his or her own behavior. The classification internal locus indicates that the person feels in control of events; external locus
 and Bandura's (1986) self-efficacy self-efficacy (selfˈ-eˑ·fi·k  theory will also be reviewed, as these constructs will be used to operationalize work competency COMPETENCY, evidence. The legal fitness or ability of a witness to be heard on the trial of a cause. This term is also applied to written or other evidence which may be legally given on such trial, as, depositions, letters, account-books, and the like.

Literature Review

Hershenson's Theory of Work Adjustment

Hershenson theorizes that work adjustment consists of two elements, the person and the person's environment. The person consists of three subsystems that include work personality, work competencies, and appropriately crystallized crys·tal·lize also crys·tal·ize  
v. crys·tal·lized also crys·tal·ized, crys·tal·liz·ing also crys·tal·iz·ing, crys·tal·liz·es also crys·tal·iz·es
 work goals. Work personality develops during the preschool years and is mostly influenced by the family. It consists of one's self-concept self-concept
An individual's assessment of his or her status on a single trait or on many human dimensions using societal or personal norms as criteria.
 as a worker, system of motivation for work, and work-related needs and values. Work competencies develop during the school years and are influenced by successes and failures in the school setting. Work competencies consist of work habits, physical and mental skills, and work related interpersonal skills (Szymanski & Hershenson, 1998). Work habits include promptness, neatness, and reliability, while work related interpersonal skills include responding appropriately to supervision and getting along with co-workers (Hershenson, 1996a). Appropriate crystallized work goals develop prior to leaving school and are influenced by one's peer or reference group. (Hershenson, 1996b). Work goals should be clear, realistic, and consistent with the person's work personality and work competencies (Hershenson, 1996a). Work personality, work competencies, and work goals interact with each other and result in work adjustment. Each subsystem A unit or device that is part of a larger system. For example, a disk subsystem is a part of a computer system. A bus is a part of the computer. A subsystem usually refers to hardware, but it may be used to describe software.  affects the development of the two other subsystems (Szymanski & Hershenson, 1998).

Hershenson (1996a) discusses three domains of work adjustment, which include task performance, work role behavior, and work satisfaction. Task performance refers to the quality and quantity of work output. Work role behavior refers to behavior appropriate to the work setting, such as wearing appropriate clothing, taking responsibility for one's actions, and following directions. Work satisfaction refers to one's degree of gratification GRATIFICATION. A reward given voluntarily for some service or benefit rendered, without being requested so to do, either expressly or by implication.  resulting from work (Szymanski & Hershenson, 1998). Task performance, work role behavior, and work satisfaction are related to the three subsystems of the person. Task performance is related primarily to work competencies and secondarily to work personality; work role behavior is related primarily to work personality and secondarily to the work habits component of work competencies; and work satisfaction is related primarily to work goals and secondarily to work personality (Szymanski & Hershenson, 1998). The three domains of work adjustment develop sequentially and in relation to a particular environment (Szymanski, Hershenson, Enright, & Ettinger, 1996). Theoretically, individuals must address two major environmental transitions, the transition from home to school and the transition from school to work. However, for individuals who experience an impediment A disability or obstruction that prevents an individual from entering into a contract.

Infancy, for example, is an impediment in making certain contracts. Impediments to marriage include such factors as consanguinity between the parties or an earlier marriage that is still valid.
 in the course of their career track, there may be a third or fourth environmental transition (rehabilitation counseling or a shifting of careers). Success in the current transition will depend on the individual's experiences during previous transitions (Szymanski, et al., 1996).

After the individual enters the work setting, the three environmental systems continue to influence work adjustment. Family refers to the individual's living system, such as family of origin or internalized effects of the family of origin, mate, and children. Learning will continue to occur in both formal and informal situations and will continue to influence work adjustment. Friends and social contacts will continue to be a reference group and influence work adjustment as an expanded socialization socialization /so·cial·iza·tion/ (so?shal-i-za´shun) the process by which society integrates the individual and the individual learns to behave in socially acceptable ways.

 'system (Hershenson, 1996a). Therefore, work adjustment involves interaction among the three subsystems in the person (work personality, work competency and work goals) and the work setting. Work setting includes the organizational culture This article or section is written like an .
Please help [ rewrite this article] from a neutral point of view.
Mark blatant advertising for , using .
 and behavioral behavioral

pertaining to behavior.

behavioral disorders
see vice.

behavioral seizure
see psychomotor seizure.
 expectations; job demands and skill requirements; and rewards and opportunities available to the worker (Hershenson, 1996a). See Hersenson (1996a) for a more detailed discussion of the theory.

Bandura's Self-Efficacy

Self-efficacy refers to one's beliefs about his or her ability to perform a specific behavior (Bandura ban`dur´a   

n. 1. A traditional Ukrainian stringed musical instrument shaped like a lute, having many strings.
, 1986, 1997a, 1997b, 1998). Bandura (1986) believed that self-efficacy was not a theory itself, but a portion of social cognitive theory Social Cognitive Theory utilized both in Psychology and Communications posits that portions of an individual's knowledge acquisition can be directly related to observing others within the context of social interactions, experiences, and outside media influences. . It is a construct based on cognitive and behavioral concepts that Bandura (1977b) describes as an individual's perception of his or her skills and abilities and whether the skills/abilities produce effective and competent actions. Self-efficacy influences perceptions of actions and coping behaviors and the choice of environments and situations in which the individual will attempt to access. Bandura (1998) states that there is a reciprocal relationship between cognitive process and behavior change Behavior change refers to any transformation or modification of human behavior. Such changes can occur intentionally, through behavior modification, without intention, or change rapidly in situations of mental illness.  in self-efficacy theory. Bandura's conceptualization con·cep·tu·al·ize  
v. con·cep·tu·al·ized, con·cep·tu·al·iz·ing, con·cep·tu·al·iz·es
To form a concept or concepts of, and especially to interpret in a conceptual way:
 of self-efficacy encompasses two components, efficacy expectations and outcome expectations. Efficacy expectations refer to one's conviction that he or she can successfully produce the behaviors that will lead to a desired outcome, while outcome expectations refer to one's belief that a particular course of action will produce a certain outcome (Bandura, 1977a). Efficacy expectations have an effect on one's choice of settings, behaviors, and persistence (1) In a CRT, the time a phosphor dot remains illuminated after being energized. Long-persistence phosphors reduce flicker, but generate ghost-like images that linger on screen for a fraction of a second.  (Bandura, 1997b). Those with low efficacy expectations will likely avoid situations in which they feel unable to cope. Instead, they will seek out situations in which they feel that they will be able to handle. Persistence in producing behaviors is also affected by efficacy expectations. Individuals who have high levels of efficacy expectations will be more likely to persist with behaviors when they become difficult and will therefore be more likely to execute the behavior successfully which in turn increases their efficacy expectations even more (Bandura, 1998). On the other hand, individuals with low levels of efficacy expectations will be more likely to cease production of behaviors once the behaviors become difficult, which will in turn reinforce their already low efficacy expectations (Strauser, 1995; Strauser, Waldrop, Hamsley & Jenkins, 1998; & Strauser, Waldrop & Jenkins, 1998). The concept of self-efficacy is situation-specific meaning that one will have a range of both high and low self-efficacy expectations at one time depending on specific situation, task, or behavior (Sadri & Robertson, 1993).

Self-efficacy was first introduced into the career and vocational development literature through the construct's relationship to perceived career options (Betz & Hackett, 1981). Its use was further expanded as social cognitive theory was related to career and academic interest, and career choice and performance (Lent Lent [Old Eng. lencten,=spring], Latin Quadragesima (meaning 40; thus the 40 days of Lent). In Christianity, Lent is a time of penance, prayer, preparation for or recollection of baptism, and preparation for the celebration of Easter. , Brown, & Hackett, 1994). Self-efficacy theory has since been applied to a variety of career and vocational related behaviors including job search intentions (Eden & Aviram, 1993; Van Ryn & Vinokur, 1992), career choice (Betz & Hackett, 1981), task performance and persistence (Jacobs, Prentice-Dunn, & Rogers, 1984), interview readiness and performance (Stumpf, Austin, & Hartman, 1984), and employment outcomes for individuals with psychiatric psy·chi·at·ric
Of or relating to psychiatry.

psychiatric adjective Pertaining to psychiatry, mental disorders
 disorders (Regenold, Sherman, & Fenzel, 1999). In addition, meta-analysis meta-analysis /meta-anal·y·sis/ (met?ah-ah-nal´i-sis) a systematic method that takes data from a number of independent studies and integrates them using statistical analysis.  and comprehensive reviews (Hackett, 1995; Lent, Brown, & Hackett, 1994) have lent strong support to the role of self-efficacy as a predictor of academic performance and career decision-making decision-making,
n the process of coming to a conclusion or making a judgment.

decision-making, evidence-based,
n a type of informal decision-making that combines clinical expertise, patient concerns, and evidence gathered from
 intentions and behaviors.

Rotter's Theory of Locus of Control

Rotter's (1966) locus of control theory has its roots in social learning theory. Social learning theory (Rotter, 1954) purports that reinforcements reinforcements reinforce npl (Mil) → renfort(s) m(pl)  act to strengthen the expectancy A mere hope, based upon no direct provision, promise, or trust. An expectancy is the possibility of receiving a thing, rather than having a vested interest in it.

The term has been applied to situations where an individual hopes and expects to receive something, generally
 that a particular behavior or event will be followed by that same reinforcement reinforcement /re·in·force·ment/ (-in-fors´ment) in behavioral science, the presentation of a stimulus following a response that increases the frequency of subsequent responses, whether positive to desirable events, or  in the future. Conversely con·verse 1  
intr.v. con·versed, con·vers·ing, con·vers·es
1. To engage in a spoken exchange of thoughts, ideas, or feelings; talk. See Synonyms at speak.

, once a relationship is established between a behavior and reinforcement, the absence of the reinforcement will reduce or extinguish Extinguish

Retire or pay off debt.
 the expectancy. Expectancies are generalized gen·er·al·ized
1. Involving an entire organ, as when an epileptic seizure involves all parts of the brain.

2. Not specifically adapted to a particular environment or function; not specialized.

 from specific situations to situations that are perceived as similar or related. These generalized attitudes, beliefs, and expectancies can affect a variety of behavioral choices in many different life situations (Rotter, 1966).

Locus of control (Rotter, 1966) refers to one's belief in his or her abilities to control life events. The term locus of control is often used interchangeably INTERCHANGEABLY. Formerly when deeds of land were made, where there Were covenants to be performed on both sides, it was usual to make two deeds exactly similar to each other, and to exchange them; in the attesting clause, the words, In witness whereof the parties have hereunto  with self-efficacy. However, the terms are not equivalent. While self-efficacy focuses on the perception of ability to act competently and effectively, locus of control focuses on the perception of control (Bandura, 1977a). An individual with an internal locus of control believes that outcomes are related to his or her behavior or personal investment, while an individual with an external locus of control believes that outcomes are not related to his or her behavior but to external forces beyond his or her control. Individuals with an external locus of control may perceive life events to be controlled by luck, chance, fate, or powerful others. Stated differently, individuals with an internal locus of control are more likely to change their behavior following reinforcement than are individuals with an external locus of control (Marks, 1998).

Locus of control has been implicated im·pli·cate  
tr.v. im·pli·cat·ed, im·pli·cat·ing, im·pli·cates
1. To involve or connect intimately or incriminatingly: evidence that implicates others in the plot.

 in a wide variety of career and vocational behaviors. Spector (1988) developed the Work Locus of Control Scale as a measure of generalized control in work settings. More recently, researchers have suggested that the work locus of control may act as a strong mediating variable in job stress and strain (Spector & O'Connell, 1994). Locus of control has also been related to attitude toward work and client participation in vocational rehabilitation Noun 1. vocational rehabilitation - providing training in a specific trade with the aim of gaining employment
rehabilitation - the restoration of someone to a useful place in society
 for individuals with industrial injuries (Duvdevany & Rimmerman, 1996).

Purpose of this Research

Hershenson suggests work adjustment consists of an interaction among the three domains of the individual (work personality, work competencies, and work goals) and their work environment. An individual develops the three domains sequentially with each domain having a reciprocal effect on the other two domains. Therefore, the process of work adjustment can be viewed as a dynamic process in which each of the domains can only develop to a level that is supported by the preceding domain (Szymanski & Hershenson, 1998). In addition, the three domains of the individual directly impact the three components of work adjustment, task performance, work role behavior, and work satisfaction. Specifically, Hershenson hypothesized that an individual's task performance is directly affected and supported by the individual's work personality and work competencies. It is the relationship between an individual's work personality and work competencies that is the specific focus of this research. Specifically, the reciprocal effect between work personality and work competency would appear to be critical in that the family is the primary source of work personality development and that the formal education process is the primary source of work competency development. We believe that through counseling, the process of recreating an educational environment, which enhances work competencies, is more readily accomplished than recreating the family and trying to build work personality. If there is a reciprocating effect, work competencies could then be the point of intervention A procedure used in a lawsuit by which the court allows a third person who was not originally a party to the suit to become a party, by joining with either the plaintiff or the defendant. , with the knowledge that there is a reciprocal impact on work personality. In this research, we operationalized work competency as locus of control and job readiness self-efficacy because they appear to be linked to effective task performance that is theoretically related to work personality and work competency. Therefore, individuals with well-developed work personality are hypothesized to report higher levels of job readiness self-efficacy and more internalized work locus of control.

This research study focused on three questions. First, do higher levels of work personality predict higher levels of job readiness self-efficacy and more internalized work locus of control? It is expected that a more internalized locus of control and higher job readiness self- efficacy will be significantly predicted by higher levels of work personality. Second, do higher numbers of times being fired or asked to leave a job and length of employment relate to lower levels of work personality, job readiness self-efficacy, and a more externalized locus of control? It is expected that significant correlations will exist between the three instruments and the number of jobs and times fired. Finally, do individuals differ in their reported levels of work personality, job readiness self-efficacy, and work locus of control according to according to
1. As stated or indicated by; on the authority of: according to historians.

2. In keeping with: according to instructions.

 level of reported education, gender, ethnicity ethnicity Vox populi Racial status–ie, African American, Asian, Caucasian, Hispanic  and whether or not an individual's parents/guardians worked while the individual was growing up? It is expected that numerous significant differences in the three measures will exist based on various demographic variables.



Participants in this research consisted of 104 individuals who were receiving job placement services from a community-based job placement program funded by a state division of rehabilitation rehabilitation: see physical therapy.  in a major urban area in the Southern U.S. All program enrollees, during the time of data collection, were given the opportunity to participate and 97% participated. The age range was 18 to 64 years, with a mean of 34.5 and gender diversity of the group included 58 females and 46 males. The group included 63 African Americans African American Multiculture A person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa. See Race. , 35 Caucasians, and 3 Native Americans (3 individuals did not indicate ethnic background). Educational level of participants was mixed with 10 having less than an 8th grade education, 17 having completed some high school, 49 with a GED GED
1. general equivalency diploma

2. general educational development

GED (US) n abbr (Scol) (= general educational development) →
 or high school diploma A high school diploma is a diploma awarded for the completion of high school. In the United States and Canada, it is considered the minimum education required for government jobs and higher education. An equivalent is the GED. , and 28 with educational training beyond high school. Most participants were single (91) and 12 reported being married (one participant did not indicate this information). All participants had a DSM-IV DSM-IV
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV). This reference book, published by the American Psychiatric Association, is the diagnostic standard for most mental health professionals in the United States.
 diagnosis which qualified them for state funded rehabilitation services. The diagnoses included mental retardation mental retardation, below average level of intellectual functioning, usually defined by an IQ of below 70 to 75, combined with limitations in the skills necessary for daily living. , mental illness, and substance dependence.


Demographic form. Participants completed a demographic form. The form included: age, gender, ethnicity, highest educational level, living arrangements, marital status marital status,
n the legal standing of a person in regard to his or her marriage state.
, number of jobs held, and number of times asked to leave a job.

Work Locus of Control Scale (WLCS WLCS Workload & Cost Schedule ). The participants completed the Work Locus of Control Scale (WLCS; Spector, 1988). The instrument consisted of 16 Likert scale Likert scale A subjective scoring system that allows a person being surveyed to quantify likes and preferences on a 5-point scale, with 1 being the least important, relevant, interesting, most ho-hum, or other, and 5 being most excellent, yeehah important, etc  items with response categories ranging from 0 (disagree very much) to 5 (agree very much). Some sample items include "Getting the job you want is mostly a matter of luck," and "People who perform their jobs well generally get rewarded for it" (Spector, 1988, p. 340). Spector reported reliability coefficient coefficient /co·ef·fi·cient/ (ko?ah-fish´int)
1. an expression of the change or effect produced by variation in certain factors, or of the ratio between two different quantities.

 alphas ranging from .75 to .85 for the instrument. Validity has been demonstrated with the WLCS and organizational variables as well as other locus of control measures (Hoff-Macan, Trusty & Trimble, 1996; Spector, 1988).

Job Readiness Self-Efficacy Scale (JRSE JRSE Journal of Research in Science and Engineering (De La Salle University-Manila)
JRSE Journal of Renewable and Sustainable Energy
). The Job Readiness Self-Efficacy Scale (JRSE) was developed for this study and the items addressed an individual's perceived confidence to engage in job readiness activities. The instrument consists of 20 items with Likert scales from 1 (not confident at all) to 5 (very confident). Examples of items include: "I am confident in my ability to get along with my supervisor" and "I am confident in my ability to keep a neat and clean appearance during the job search." A panel of experts insured that the items were consistent with job readiness self-efficacy theory and were related to job readiness. The reliability coefficient alpha for the scale is .88 for the 104 participants.

Work Personality Profile-Self-Report (WPP-SR). The Work Personality Profile-Self- Report (WPP-SR; Bolton, 1992) is designed to measure the individual's skill and ability to deal successfully with the work environment (Bolton & Roessler, 1986). The Likert-scale instrument has 58 items which form 11 subscales and 5 factor analytic Adj. 1. factor analytic - of or relating to or the product of factor analysis
factor analytical
 scales (task orientation, social skills, work motivation, work conformance con·for·mance  

Noun 1. conformance - correspondence in form or appearance

agreement, correspondence - compatibility of observations; "there was no agreement between theory and
, and personal presentation). Items are scored from 1 (a problem area) to 4 (a definite strength; Bolton, 1992). Sample items include, "Learn new assignments quickly" and "Need virtually no direct supervision" (Bolton, 1992, p. 1). The WPP-SR has strong validity for measuring behaviors associated with an individual's ability and skill to successfully deal with the work environment (Bolton, 1992).


State Division of Rehabilitation Services counselors referred participants to a community-based job readiness program where they received-training in job readiness and job placement activities. The program which is state funded is administered by individuals with specialized spe·cial·ize  
v. spe·cial·ized, spe·cial·iz·ing, spe·cial·iz·es

1. To pursue a special activity, occupation, or field of study.

 training in teaching job readiness areas. Each participant was given informed consent and voluntarily participated. Participation rate was 97%. No compensation was given for participation and individuals were free to withdraw at any time with no penalty. The demographic form was completed first and served as a measure of literacy. Clients who were observed to have had difficulty with the demographic form (i.e. nonverbal non·ver·bal  
1. Being other than verbal; not involving words: nonverbal communication.

2. Involving little use of language: a nonverbal intelligence test.
 indicators of frustration) or reported reading problems were given the option of having the instruments read to them. The clients were each given the instruments in the same order.

Statistical analysis

Each of the research questions was analyzed an·a·lyze  
tr.v. an·a·lyzed, an·a·lyz·ing, an·a·lyz·es
1. To examine methodically by separating into parts and studying their interrelations.

2. Chemistry To make a chemical analysis of.

 following data collection. A multiple regression Multiple regression

The estimated relationship between a dependent variable and more than one explanatory variable.
 examined whether work personality predicted job readiness self-efficacy and work locus of control. A Pearson product-moment correlation focused on correlations between number of jobs held, number of times fired, length of unemployment, work personality, job readiness self-efficacy, and work locus of control. The final statistical analysis consisted of t-tests examining the differences in education, gender, and ethnicity in relation to work personality, job readiness self-efficacy, and work locus of control.


The first research question was analyzed using a multiple regression. The five factor scales of the WPP-SR were significantly intercorrelated suggesting multicollinearity problems. Due to this intercorrelation, the five factor scales were combined into an overall score as suggested by Berry Berry, former province, France
Berry (bĕrē`), former province, central France. Bourges, the capital, and Châteauroux are the chief towns.
 and Feldman (1985). A step-wise multiple regression indicated the WPP-SR was a significant predictor of both the WLCS F(1,103) = 17.58, p < .001) and the JRSE F(1, 103) = 15.04, p < .001). Based on the significant findings and areas of interest, the four WPP- SR subscales which were of theoretical interest and were directly tied to research questions (acceptance of work role, ability to profit from instruction and correction, work persistence, and work tolerance) were examined. A Bonferroni adjustment was made based on doing two regressions and resulted in an alpha of .025. Table 1 contains the step-wise multiple regression results with the four subscales as independent variables and WLCS as the dependent variable. Overall, the WLCS indicated that work personality was a significant predictor of locus of control. When the beta weights were examined to determine the unique contribution of the subscales, the work persistence subscale of the WPP-SR was a significant predictor of the WLCS. Table 2 contains the step-wise multiple regression results with the four subscales as independent variables and the JRSE as the dependent variable. Overall, work personality was a significant predictor of job readiness self-efficacy. Of the four WPP-SR subscales, results indicated that an ability to profit from instruction or correction was a significant predictor of job readiness self-efficacy.

The second research question was examined using a Pearson product-moment correlation. Table 3 contains correlations between the number of jobs held, number of days since last worked, number of times fired or asked to leave a job, the WPPSR, WLS WLS Weblogic Server (BEA Systems)
WLS Weight Loss Surgery
WLS Weighted Least Squares
WLS Wisconsin Lutheran Seminary (Mequon, Wisconsin)
WLS Windows Live Search
WLS Wisconsin Longitudinal Study
, and JRSE. A significant correlation existed between the number of jobs held and number of times fired or asked to leave a job (r=-.24, p < .01). The number of jobs held was also correlated cor·re·late  
v. cor·re·lat·ed, cor·re·lat·ing, cor·re·lates
1. To put or bring into causal, complementary, parallel, or reciprocal relation.

 with work personality (r= .20, p .05). The WPP-SR was significantly correlated with both the JRSE (r=.32, p < .001) and the WLCS (r=-.35, p<.001). Lastly, the JRSE was significantly correlated with the WLCS (r=-.37, p<.001).

The third research question focused on differences between groups. Due to the number of t-tests, a Bonferroni adjustment was calculated and alpha was subsequently set at .003. Six t-tests examined gender, ethnicity, educational attainment Educational attainment is a term commonly used by statisticans to refer to the highest degree of education an individual has completed.[1]

The US Census Bureau Glossary defines educational attainment as "the highest level of education completed in terms of the
, marital status, whether individuals received public assistance, and whether their parents/guardians worked while they were growing up with the WPP-SR, JRSE, and WLCS. Of these t-tests, two were significant. Significant differences were found between those who had at least a high school education with those who did not on work persistence (t = 3.47, p < .001). Those participants with a high school education reported higher levels of work persistence. Participants whose parents worked while they were growing up differed significantly from those whose parents did not work on the WLCS (t = 3.32, p < .002). Individuals whose parents worked while growing up reported a more internalized work locus of control.

Discussion and Counseling Implications

For the first research question our findings indicated that higher levels of work personality did predict more internalized locus of control and higher levels of job-readiness self-efficacy. The beta weights indicated that the work persistence subscale had a unique and significant amount of contribution suggesting individuals with more persistence had more internalized locus of control. Persistence was defined as individuals who were more likely to display the following behaviors: ability to stay on task without prompting, work steadily along the entire work period and work at routine jobs without resistance (BoRon boron (bōr`ŏn) [New Gr. from borax], chemical element; symbol B; at. no. 5; at. wt. 10.81; m.p. about 2,300°C;; sublimation point about 2,550°C;; sp. gr. 2.3 at 25°C;; valence +3.  & Roessler, 1986). This finding lends support to Hershenson's theory that a more developed work personality and a higher level of work competence are related to higher levels of task performance as measured by job readiness self-efficacy and locus of control. These findings lend some initial support that counseling interventions directed at increasing work persistence may be beneficial in assisting clients in developing a more internalized work locus of control, which, in turn may impact the individual's ability to engage in the work adjustment activities of task performance while simultaneously strengthening the domain of work personality. Work personality was also a significant predictor of job readiness self-efficacy. Self-efficacy in the area of job readiness is critical in that a person who believes he or she will be successful in job search behaviors is more likely to actually obtain employment. While the work persistence scale was related to locus of control, job readiness self-efficacy was related to another aspect of work personality which was the person's ability to benefit from instruction and correction. This ability to benefit from instruction included an individual's ability to make recommended changes and improve work behavior Work behavior is a term used to describe the behavior one uses in the workplace and is normally more formal than other types of human behavior. This varies from profession to profession, as some are far more casual than others.  after correction (Bolton & Roessler, 1986). Thus, interventions directed toward job readiness self-efficacy and locus of control are not redundant and both are necessary.

The second research area focused on relationships between demographic variables and work personality, job readiness self-efficacy, and work locus of control. Not surprisingly, there was a significant correlation between the number of jobs a person held and how many times he or she had been fired or asked to leave. The number of jobs a person held was also correlated with the WPP-SR score. It could be hypothesized that individuals with more developed work personality have participated in the labor force longer, maintained employment, and potentially have had multiple employers which is consistent with current labor market trends. Thus, they have more experience (behavioral conditioning) in performing and demonstrating successful employment related behaviors. We plan to further operationalize these variables and investigate this relationship in future research. Subsequent research should address unique subscale contributions of the WPP-SR and the relationship between the individual's rationale rationale (rash´nal´),
n the fundamental reasons used as the basis for a decision or action.
 for leaving employment and work personality.

Finally, we examined work personality, job readiness self-efficacy, and locus of control in relation to demographic variables. Individuals who had a minimum of a high school education had significantly higher levels of work persistence than those with less than high school education. We expected this finding because participating in the formal educational process involves persistence. The finding also lends theoretical support to the fact that school-related activities develop work competence as Hershenson suggests. Further, Hershenson suggests task performance and work role behavior are related to work personality and work competence. Thus, individuals who stay in school longer should have more work persistence that will build their task performance and work role behavior in turn enhancing their job success. Those who persist in Verb 1. persist in - do something repeatedly and showing no intention to stop; "We continued our research into the cause of the illness"; "The landlord persists in asking us to move"
 school have good work habits and the ability to interact with peers and supervisors. The results also suggest a significant relationship between the parent's work histories and the child's perception of work as an adult. Specifically, participants who reported that their parents worked while growing up perceived themselves as having more control in their work activity. The results tie into Bandura's construct of observational learning For other uses, see Social learning.
Observational learning (also known as: vicarious learning or social learning or modeling) is learning that occurs as a function of observing, retaining and replicating behavior observed in others.
 and further implicates that parents' role in the vocational development of their children.


The discussion of the results of this study is limited by the following considerations. First, the sample was made up of individuals who reported having a disability and were seeking services from vocational rehabilitation. Therefore, the sample is representative of a very specific type of population that will limit the generalizibility of the study's results. Additionally, the sample size was limited due to the number of people seeking services during a time frame in which no changes to service delivery occurred. A second limitation is that due to the non-experimental nature of the study the authors were unable to control for the types or amount of services that individuals received during the vocational rehabilitation process. Therefore, the relationships established in this study may be deceiving because of a treatment effect that may exist in some of the individuals. Finally, due to the non-experimental nature of this study the authors are unable to establish any type of causal causal /cau·sal/ (kaw´z'l) pertaining to, involving, or indicating a cause.


relating to or emanating from cause.
 conclusions concerning the relationship between work personality, self-efficacy, and locus of control.


Overall, this study attempted to examine the theoretical relationship between work personality and work competencies in Hershenson's theory of work adjustment. The results of the study indicate that a reciprocal relationship appears to exist between these two domains and that interventions directed at developing work competencies may have some effect on work personality. The study also found that individuals with more education reported higher levels of work persistence and individuals whose parents worked while growing up reported a more internalized work locus of control. From the results of this study, it would appear to be important that future research to examine the specific impact that work personality counseling interventions have on work locus of control and job readiness self-efficacy).
Table 1

R, R Square and Beta for the Step-wise Regression Equation Using
Select subscales of the WPP as Independent Variables and WLCS as the
Dependent Variable

Dependent       R       R Square    Predictor     Beta        t

  WLCS       .34 ***      .12       Subscale 3    -.34     -4.14 ***

***Variables not in the Equation***

                                    Subscale 1    -.03      -.39
                                    Subscale 2    -.15     -1.25
                                    Subscale 4    -.20     -1.90

Note *** = p<.001

Subscale 1 = Acceptance of Work Role

Subscale 2 = Ability to profit from instruction or correction

Subscale 3 = Work persistence

Subscale 4 = Work tolerance
Table 2

R, R Square and Beta for the Step-wise Regression Equation Using
Select subscales of the WPP as the Independent Variable and JRSE as
the Dependent Variable

Dependent       R       R Square    Predictor     Beta      t

JRSE         .35 ***      .12       Subscale 2    .35     4.22 ***

***Variables not in the Equation***

                                    Subscale 1     .00     .028
                                    Subscale 3     .00     .014
                                    Subscale 4     .08     .63

Note *** = p<.001

Subscale 1 = Acceptance of Work Role

Subscale 2 = Ability to profit from instruction or correction

Subscale 3 = Work persistence

Subscale 4 = Work tolerance
Table 3

Pearson-product moment correlations for the number of jobs held, number
of days since last worked, number of times fired or have been asked to
leave a job, Work Personality Profile score, Work Locus of Control, and
Job Readiness Self-Efficacy

          1        2        3       WP          JRSE       WLC

1        1.0
2       -.08       1.0
3        .24 **    -.12    1.0
WP       .20 *      .07     .07    1.0
JRSE     .08        .03     .05     .32 ***    1.00
WLC     -.26        .03     .05    -.35 ***    -.37 ***    1.0

Note: * = p<.05, ** = p <.01, *** = p<.001

1 = Number of jobs held

2 = Number of days since last worked

3 = Number of times fired or asked to leave a job

WP = Work Personality Profile Scale

JRSE = Job Readiness Self-Efficacy Scale

WLC = Work Locus of Control Scale
Table 4

Effect of education on work persistence and work tolerance

Work Persistence

                                Mean       t        p

  Less than High School         3.12     -3.47     .001
  High School or Greater        3.54

Work Tolerance
  Less than High School         3.18     -2.17     .03
  High School or Greater        3.45

Work Locus of Control Scale
  Parents Not Working          42.00      3.32     .002
  Parents Working              26.21


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New York, Middle Atlantic state of the United States. It is bordered by Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, and the Atlantic Ocean (E), New Jersey and Pennsylvania (S), Lakes Erie and Ontario and the Canadian province of
: Freeman Freeman can mean:
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  • A person who has been awarded Freedom of the City or "Freedom of the Company" in a Livery Company
  • The Freeman

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emanating from or pertaining to ecology.

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see biome.

ecological climax
the state of balance in an ecosystem when its inhabitants have established their permanent relationships with each
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Author:Keim, Jeanmarie
Publication:The Journal of Rehabilitation
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jan 1, 2002
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