Vocational Interests of Elementary and Junior High School Students as Related to Intelligence and Sex



Bulletin of Educational Psychology, 1981, 14,231-240. Taiwan Normal University, Taipei, Taiwan, China.





The purposes of this study were: (1) to investigate the vocational interests of the bright, the normal, and the menta11y retarded students; (2) to compare vocational interests among the brig祉, the normal, and the mentally retarded students; (3) to seek influencial factors and effective guidelines in the area of children's career development.

The sample was drawn from ten schools in Taipei city, composed of 192 Hfth graders and 288 eight graders. Based on Ho11and's paradigm (1973), the Vocational 1nterest 1nventory (VII) in Chinese was devised and administered accordingly to the subjects. The VII consists of 118 items of six types of vocational interests, i.e., realistic, investigative, artistic, social,

enterprising and conventionaJ. The data obtained were treated by a principle axis factor an-alysis and two and thre

way analysis of covariance with social economic status as covariate.

The main findings of this study were as follows: (1) The bright and normal students had similar factor structure in vocational preference, while the retarded showed less differ-entiation with only one factor emerged. (2) Grade effects were sìgnificant on Hve types of vocational interests, i.e., rea1istic, investigative, artistic, social and conventional. The higher grade students indicated more interests in these areas. (3) There were significant sex differ-ences iri the vocational choice: boys preferred rea1istic and investigative occupations, while girls preferred artistic and social ones. (4) There were significant inteI1igence effects: the retarded showed much fewer vocational interests in a11 types than the other two intelIigence groups. 1t suggests that the retarded might be short of occupational information. on the other hand, the bright students expressed more interests in investigative and artistic domains than normal students. This is in accordance with their abilities as weIl as social


In 1971, when Sidney P. Marlar肘, }r., then U.S. Commissionor of Education, proposed that all education be thought of as preparation for a career


the term and the concept of

career education" began to attract wide attention. He then suggested that the f,也us from kindergarten to grade six be on

career awareness


from grade seven to grade ten on

career exploration," and from grade eleven to grade twel ve or beyond on

career prepara-tion." Thus the elementary sch∞1 would heIp children to become better acquainted with the great variety of occupations. The junior high sch∞1 would help its pupi1s to compare dif-ferent clusters of occupations


to select a few of them for more intensive investigation



to select one cluster for which they would begin to prepare. Vocational preferences of ele-mentary and junior high students thus would be an interesting and importment topic for both career counselors and re記archers.


Paper presented at the 4th Asian Regional Association for Vocational and Educational Guidance (ARA VEG) Conference, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, September 9-12, 1980.


• 232 • 教育心理學報

There are may theories of VI∞ational choice and career development. Some explain 閻明

cupational choice in terms of environmental influences (e.g., Caplow, 1954; Clark, 1931; Hollingshead, 1949; Mi1ler and Form, 1964); Others find their explanations in the needs of the individual (e.g., Ginzberg et al., 1951; Hopp<跳, 1957; Roe, 1958; Super, 1953). However,

according to Holland (1966, 1973), there is yet a third element to be considered, namely,

the interaction of the two. Holland's theory can be summarized in these words: (1) Most persons can be categorized as one of six types-Realistic, Intellectual, Social, Conventional,

Enterprising, and Artistic; (2) There are six kinds of environments: Realistic, Intellectual,

Social, Conventional, Enterprising, and Artistic; (3) People search for envionments and voca-tions that will permit them to exercise their skills and abilities to express their attitudes and values, to take on agreeable problems and roles, and to avoid disagreeable ones; (4) A per-son's behavior can be explained by the interaction of his personality pattern and his environ-ment. Holland (1973) has accordingly developed the Vocational Preference Inventory (VPI) for surveying six types of vocational interests. The VPI is basically construct-oriented and seems to be most appropriate for cross個cultural study.

In dealing with influencial factors, many studies on v∞ational choice have been focused on soc~。但onomic asp配ts and self-concept dimension. However, there is yet the intelligence factor. It is very possible that pupils of different levels of inteIIigence would perceive v∞a­

tions differently and make different choices. Hoppock (1976) noted that there was a con-trast between the reactions of children with low and high IQs. When the six-grade class with IQs of 46 to 92 visited the knife factory, nearly everyone saw at least one beginning job that he liked. When the class with IQs of 114 to 142 visited a television-antenna plant


several pupils wouldn't like to do that kind of work because

it must get very monotonous." Rice (1978) asked 111 students in grades 8




and 12 to write down three kinds of their favoriate v∞ations and then classified their intel1igence aαording to their preferences on the

Otis Mental Ability T自t. It was interesting to find out that a considerable portion of students


used as an independent variab1e.

τ'he genera1 hypotheses of this study were as follows:

1. There are significant re1ations between intelligence and v∞ational interests; that is,

vocationa1 interests vary with different intelligence levels. 2. There are significant sex differences in VIα:ational choice.

3. There are significant differences of vocationa1 interests between students in grade 5 and in grade 8.

METHOD Subjects

The subjects of this study were 480 pupils drawn from grade 5 and grade 8 from three e1ementary sch∞Is and seven junior high sch∞.1s. There were 192 fifth graders and 288 eighth graders. As shown in Table 1


there were two intelligence levels


the bright and the normal, in grade 5; there were three intelligence levels, the bright, the norma1, and the

re-個rded, in grade 8.. The ceU size is 48 equally. TABLE 1


Grade 5 Grade 8

Bright Normal Retarded Bright Normal Retarded

Boys 48 48 48 48 48

Girls 48 48 48 48 48

Tota1 96 96 96 96 96

The retarded in grade 5 were not incIuded for the reason that in a preliminary survey it was found that their vocaburaries were t∞ limited to understand the wording of the in-ventory provided.

τ'he subjects were randomly selected on the basis of intelligence scores. Firstly, the pupils in grade 5 were given the Standard Progressive Matrices (SPM)


th個ewith percentile over 85 were considered

bright." SimiIar1y, the students in grade 8 were given the Chi-nese form of Army General Classification Test (AGCT)


those with AGCT score over 120

were considered

bright." The retarded 組mp1e in grade 8 was drawn from the educab1e mentally retarded (EMR) class wi也 IQs of 50 to 70 on Chinese form of Stanford-Binet

Scale. The normal subjects were randomly drawn from the classes from which the

bright" were sel配ted. The number of the bright and the normal in a given class was thus equi-valent.


In addition to the established intelligence sca1es, the V凹ational Interest Inventory (VII) was devised based on Holland's framwork (1966, 1973). Items of the VII were derived andl or adopted from HoUand's VPI (HoUand


1973) and the vocational awareness scale of the

BarcIay Classr∞m Climate Inventory (BCCI, see Barclay, 1974; Wu, 1975). A preliminary test and item analysis procedure were conduct吋. The fina1 form of the VII consists of 118


• 234 • 教育心理學報

items of six ty戶s of v,也ationa1 interests




Rea1istic (23 items)


Investigative (18 items)


Artistic (20 items)


Social (22 items)


Enterprising (20 items)


and Conventional (15 items). Two illustrating items are provided for practice. Below is one of them.

口 Yes 口 No Librarian (to take care of 以沁ks in a library)

The directions on 也.e front page are as follows: This is an inventory of your feelings and attitudes about any kind of work. Fill out yo叮 sheet by following directions given be-low: (1) Show on your sheet 血e 臼cupations which interest or appea1 to you by checking the "Y,聞"; (2) Show the occupations which you disIike or find uninteresting by ch配king the

No"; (3) Every item should be checked


please leave no blank. Proeedore and Data Analysis

τ'he VII was administered in group. The subjects were free to ask questions relating to the meaning of the items. There was no time Iimit. However


most subjects finished the inventory in 30 minutes.

The data obtained were treated by the SPSS ∞mputer programs, including (1) The principle axis factor analysis for three intelligence groups respectively. The pur政治e of this

pr∞edure was to ∞mpare the factor structure of different intelligence groups 問他er than to test the construct of the VII; (2) Three-way analysis of covariance for the bright and the normal of both sexes in both grades, with SES as covariate and VII measures as de-pendent v缸iables; (3) Two-way analysis of ∞,variance for 切th sexes and three intelligence groups in grade 8, with SES as covariate and VII measures as dependent variables.


Factor Analysis

Using 6 subsca1e scores as dependent variables and utilizing principle axis factor analysis with varimax rotation, the results of each intelligence group were obtained and are here summarized in Table 2.

The factor number wi由 eigenvalue over 1.0 was two for both the bright group and the normal group, but only one for the retarded group. L∞,king into the factor 1個dings of both the bright and the normal groups


the major components (factor loadings over .40) of them were quite similar, that Realistic and Investigative were the major components of Factor 1 and Artistic






and Conventional were of Factor 2. For retarded group, only one factor was heaviIy loaded by alI subscales. It ap醉ars that the retarded group was less differentiated in their v,∞ationa1 choice than the non-retarded.




d-r d-o 恥副 -piw 啥 i h

一 r -nu -zsi'7TL mv 叫一也 2 hmE



1 叮 -m d-w h-d2


扯一。 ]-c1 -ea 一 F Bright (N=192)



Realistic 4.02 Investigative 8.04 Artistic 6.67 Social 5.68 Enterprising 4.61 Conventional 2.48 Retarded (N=96)



Normal (N=192)



.66* .79* .73* .80* .67* .69* .82* .91* .21 .19 .34 .15 .31 .15 .79* .86* .78* .86* .89* .86* -.05 .22 .27 .36 .21 .14 .84* .75* .80* .64* 3.80 3.18 2.85 3.37 3.24 2.07 3.60 2.42 2.95 3.84 2.82 1.70 4.67 5.12


4.44 4.11 3.31 4.20 6.76 5.24 5.99 4.71 3.02 3.82 5. 的 4.91 4.19 3.77 2.62 3.17 53.00 2.83 1.72 47.30 28.60 1.79 29.80 2.38 39.50 Eigenvalue

Total Variance Accounted * Factor loading is over .40

ANCOV A in Both Grades

The results of three-way ANCOV A in both grades were summarized in Table 3. The SES effect had been partialed out and 位le means of each sub-group were adjusted as shown in Table 4. lt was found 曲的: (1) Grade eff凹ts were significant on five types of VI凹a­

tional interests, i.e., Realistic, lnvestigative, Artistic, Social, and Conventiona1. The pupils in the higher grade indicated more interests in these areas; (2) There were significant sex differences in the vocational choice: boys preferred realistic and investigative 個.cupatio醋,

while girls preferred artistic and s∞ial ones; (3) There were significant intelligence effects: the bright pupils expressed more interests in investigative and artistic domains than the normal pupils. These main eff凹的 mention吋 above were explained in spite of some of the significant interactions, since the interactions were a11 ordinal.



Conv. Enterp. F Ratio Social R臼1. Art. 19.90** 87.17料 5.16* 6.42* .53 1.34 5.93* 1.28 11. 06料 12.12** .09 .75 2.95 .15 5.49* 4.87車 .25 .63 3.67 6.15* .0。 qrH 且 U 月 4 732


Main Eff自t Grade(A) 1 Sex(B) 1 Intelligence(C) 1 Two-way Interaction AXB 1 AXC 1 BxC 1 Three-way Interation AxBxC 1 df Source 23.16** 2.45 1.45 17.7伊* 1.54 .23 2.90 .04 .00 5.67* 11.24料 .21 14.93** 29.48輛 6.42* Invest. 21.19** 56.81** .12 .35 4.73* .36 .01 .05 .33 .00


p<.05 艸 p<.Ol


• 236 • 教育心理學報




R個1. Invest. Art. Social Enterp. Conv. Total

Grade 5 3.18 6.35 5.05 5.31 4.31 2.13 25.94 Grade 8 5.04 8.49 6.87 6.35 5.01 3.37 35.18 Boys 5.60 9.54 4.71 5.12 4.62 2.57 31.97 Girls 2.60 5.24 7.22 6.55 4.70 2.93 29.14 Bright 4.19 7.98 6.61 5.94 4.65 2.67 31.77 Normal 4.03 6.82 5.31 5.72 4.67 2.83 29.35

ANCOV A in Grade Eight

The results of two-way ANCOV A in grade 8 were summarized in Table 5. The SES effect had also been controlled and the adjusted means were calculated as shown in Table 6. The findings were the following: (1) Similar to the findings of Table 3


boys showed more preferences for artistic and investigative vocations, while girls showed more interests in artistic and social ones. The new findings were that girls tended to be more interested in enterprising and conventional vocations; (2) In terms of intelligence, the retarded showed much fewer vocational interests in all types than the other two intelligence groups; on the other hand


the bright students again expressed more interests in investigative and artistic domains than normal students.




F Ratio

df ReaC -Invest.- .--Art于一六騙al--E聶豆豆了商品了可兩

Main Effect Sex(A) 1 39.91料 31. 37料 27.41料 11.89紳 4.67* 5.11* .01 Int.(B) 2 5.11料 47.01料 20.84牌 13.54料 9.53輛 15.74料 28.69料 Two-way Interaction AxB 2 .39 1.66 2.74 2.51 1.93 8.02** 1.41 * p<.05 艸 p<.Ol TABLE 6


Boys 6.19 7.81 4.22 4.73 3.81 2.47 泊 .12

Girls 3.01 5.01 6.88 6.45 4.77 3.25 29.28

Bright 5.20 9.56 7.73 6.77 5.15 3.33 37.62

Normal 5.28 7.19 6.01 6.51 5.00 3.85 33.67



Do Vocational Interests Vary with Intelligence?

It seems quite clear in this study that vocational interests varied with inte1ligence in many aspects. It is also obvious that the retarded pupils were not only retarded in intelli-gence development but aIωin career development in terms of the awareness of occupationa1

information. Career education obviously includes occupational information and vocational choice in a given time could be an important index of career awareness. The less differ-entiation and fewer interests in v,凹ational choice of the retarded as indícated by the results of factor analysis and analysis of covariance showed that the retarded might be far behind the normal in their v,α:ationaI maturity. 臼1 the other hand, they did not show unreaIistic vocational imagination as indicated by Ríce (1978). There might be culture differences in this regard. The present writers would suspect that the less cognitive differentiation might account for their obscure factor structure of vocationa1 interests. The failure in perceiving new data and the faiIure-oriented anticipation might be related to the reluctancy of choosing occupations.

The differences between the bright and the nonnal in vocationa1 choices were not so

揖lient 晶晶.e differences between the retarded and the non-retarded. However


the fact that the bright were more interested in investigative and artistic vocations than the normal is centainly significant. Investigative vocations such as anthropologist





and artistic v凹ations such as English teacher




architect are mostly professional and need high level of ability. In addition


there is a s∞ial expectation for the intelligent to do more sophisticated work. In coping with the intelligence-role ideology


it is no wonder 也at

the bright had higher self-expectation and, in tum, higher vocational imagination than the normal. To sum up, it seems' that the results of this study in this res伊ct are in full ac-cordance with pupiIs' abiIities as weU as social expectations.

Do Vocational Interests Vary with Sex and Grade?

In reviewing the th切'retícal and research literature on career development and sex-role

ex戶也tation, it can be found that both males and fema1es have been limited in their career development by pervasive sex-role stereotyping in aII aspects of society. The 1imiting ef-feets have been cumulative and developmental, starting at home and reinforced at every level of the educational spectrum from elementary years through coIIege, over the life span. (Hansen


1980) It is also evident in this study that boys and girls expressed their vocationa1

preferences differently even in the elementary level




boys favored realistic and

investi-gativeωcupations, while girls preferred artistic and socia1 ones. Using Holland's (1973) words, boys' behavioral tendencies might lead to the acquisition of manua1, m也hanical, agri-cultural




and technical competencies and to a deficit in s∞ial and educ甜onal com-petencies. These tendencies might al叩 lead to an acquisition of scientific and mathematical competencies and to a deficit in persuasive competencies. Girls' behaviora1 tendencies, on the other hand, might lead to an acquisition of artistic competencies-language, art, music,



writing-and to a deficit in clerical or business system competencies. These tenden-cies might also lead to an acquisition of human relations competentenden-cies such as interpersonal


• 238 • 教育心理學報

and educational competencies and to a deficit in manual and technical competenci臼. Th間e

results are quite congruent with sex-role e勾ectations existing in Chinese culture setting.


theoretical ground it seems possible 血.at ∞cupational information may have some-thing to do with age or grade level. Marland (1971) suggested that from kindergarten to grade six is the stage of

career awareness


from grade seven to grade ten is the stage of

career exploration


and from grade eleven to grade twelve or beyond is the stage of

“回reer preparation." Super and Overstreet (1960) concluded that


the typical ninth-grade boy has not yet r臼.ched a stage at which wisdom of VI∞ational preference can be

ex-P臼ted." It also showed in this study that grade made differences in pupils' vocational choices. ln general


pupi1s in higher grade indicated more interests in almost all vocational domains except the Enterprising. This does 1'I0t necessari1y lead to the conclusion that the students increased the accuracy and the adequacy of the occupational information with their age. However


it is most probable that 也e students increased their vocational awareness with age. As grade increased, they became more acquainted with the variety of occupa-tions and b民ame more eager to explore a wide range of occupations.

It should also be noted that a1though “vα:ational choice is a pr凹的s rather than event




1957) it does not deny the fact that every individual must someday decide that he will or will not accept a job that has been offered. One may




have to make several such decisions. Each decision will be affected by 0肘'sdevelopment up to that point.

(Hop-研lCk, 1976) Therefore


the findings of this study are highly congruent with the concept of career development.

Imp1ication of This Study

Based on the premise that career education obviously includes 也cupational information and that career awareness is the first phase of career development, the findings of this study yield the following implications:

1. lt is n也.essary to provide a wide variety of ∞.cupational information for elementary and junior high sch∞1 students in order to enrich their knowledge for career develop-ment.

2. As bright students preferred investigative and artistic occupations and showed earlier differentiation in career development


it would be wise to provide them with more information and opportunities for jof development in these fields in time. It is, of course, also important to encourage the bright to development whole助me attitudes toward all useful work.

3. While education or guidance can do very little to improve the intel1igence of the mentally retarded children, it is 5的11 important to increase their awareness in the area of daily living and personal-social affairs which they are capable of doing and then to provide them with better learning environment.

4. Since there is strong 揖x-role orientation in our society which might inhibit the de-velopment of individual's capacity for both sexes


it would be better at the beginning of educational career not to stress how society would perceive individual's role as masculine or feminine. Rather


the individual as him or herself per se should be


emphasized. The f出t concern of teachers or career counselors should be his or her ability and/or interest rather than his or her sexuality.


Barclay, J.R. The Barclay Classroom Climate Invent,仰: A users 翩翩al. Lexington, Ky.:

Educational Skills Development Inc.



Brunkan, R.J. Perceived parental attitudes and parental identification in relation to field of vocational choice. Journal


Counseling PsycJ加'logy, 1965, 12, 39-47.

Caplow, T. The Sociology


W。她 Minnea戶lis, Minn.: The University of Minnesota Press, 1954.



H.F. E,仰仰nic T,他們, and Correct dc,ωrþati伽al 品istribution. New York: Teachers College Press


Columbia University



Ginzberg, E., Ginzb個g, S.W., Axelrad,丘, & Herma, J.L. Oc,仰lþati01個1Choice: An Approach to a General Theory. New York: Columbia University Press



Hansen, L.S.S. Born Eree: career development, sex roles, and social change. Paper

pre-砂 sented at the International Association for Educational and V,∞ational Guidance


10th World Congress, Manila, Philippines, September 1舟, 1980.

Holland, J,L. The Psychology


Vocational Choiæ. Waltham, Mass.: Blaisdell Publishing Company





J.L. Making Vocational Choices: A T,加ory


Careers. Englewood Cliffs


N.J: Prentice-Hall





Hollingshead, A.B. Elmtoz帥:'s Youth. New York: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 1949.

Hop防此,R. Qccuþational lnlormation. 4th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill B∞k Company,


Miller, D.C., & Form, W.H. Industrial Sociology. 2nd ed. New York: Harper & Row,


間ce, F.P. The Adolescenl: Develoþment, Relationship, and Cu伽他Boston: Allyn & Bacon,

Inc., 1978.

Super, D.E. A theory of vocational development. American Psychologist, May 1953, p. 185. Super


D.E. The R砂'chology


Cat由rs. New York: Harper & Row



Super, D.E., & Overstreet, P.L. The Vocational Maturity


Ninth Grade Boys: Career Pat-tem Stu砂 MonograPh 2. New York: Teachers College Press, Columbia University,


Wu, Wu-tien Classroom Clíma俏的 Chinese and American Elementa:η Schools: A Cross-Cultural Study. Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation


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• 240 • 國立台灣師範大學教育心理學系 教育心理學報,民70 , 14期, 231-240頁



吳.式典 洪芳烈 摘要 本研究的目的有三: (1)探討資優學生、普通學生與智能不足學生的職業興趣所在; (2)比 鞍三組學生的職業興趣立異同; (3)探討見童生涯發展的影響因素及有效措引。 研究樣本取自臺北市三所國小和七所國中,包括 192名國小五年級學生和 288名國中三 年級學生。男女學生人數均衡,維就智力水準而言,國小組僅有資擾與普通二粗,閩中則包 括三粗,各組人數亦均相等。根攘 Holland (1973) 的職業類型架構,並參照 Barclay (1 974) 的班級氣氛問卷中之職業覺知量衰,自編職業興趣問卷 (VII)一種,經預試、項目 分析儉,正式題目共 118 題,包括下列六種職業興趣:實用的 (realistic) 、研究的 (in vestigati ve) 、賽術的( artistic) 、社會的 (social) 、企業的 (enterprisi ng) 、 日常的 (conventiona l)。職業興趣問卷施測後所得結果,藉 SPSS 電腦程式首先進行 主軸因素分析,以探討三組受試職業興趣因素結構之異間,然後以社經地位 (SES) 為共變 項,實施雙向與三向共變數分析,以探究智力、年級、性別的主效果及其交宜作用情形。 本研究的主要發現如下:(1)資優學生與普通學生有相似的職業興趣因素結構,部各者二 項因素出現,智能不足組則只出現一項因素,顯示其職業興趣的分化程度較低; (2)在實用的 、研究的、藝術的、社會的奧日常的等五種職業興趣上,有顯著的年級差異,即閩中組學生 破國小組學生顯示較多的興趣; (3)性別差異亦很顯著:男生較喜愛實用性與研究位職業,而 女生則較喜愛藝術性與社會性的職業; (4)不同智力水準的職業興趣者顯著差異:智能不足組 在所有六種職業類型上的興趣均低於其他兩組,還可能意味著智能不足學生被缺乏職業訊息 。叫比外,資優學生在研究性與藝術性兩類職業興趣上,顯示比普通學生有較高度的喜愛,這 亦與其本身能力和社會期望相符。 本研究的主要涵義如下: (1)應為國民中小學學生提供廣泛的職業訊息,以充實其生握發 展研需的知識; (2)對資使學生廳提供較多研究位與藝術性的職業訊息與學習機會,並培養對 工作的正確態度; (3)對智能不足學生態設法增進其對日常生活事務的了解,並提供較佳的學 習環境;(釗社會對性別角色的過度強調可能影響個人能力的發展,在教育生涯的初期,似乎 不宜強耨社會對男女職業角色的期待,而廢首先考慮學生的能力與興趣的發展。