Turning Points: Your Career Decision Making Guide / Edition 3

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Turning Points is a practical resource that covers self-assessment, career exploration, job search, and goal-setting.

It has been revised to provide updated advice on uncovering job and internship leads, creating resumes and cover letters, and interviewing effectively. Networking skills are emphasized, and the value of college internships is highlighted. Effective goal-setting techniques are introduced. Educational decisions are presented as a crucial dimension of career development. To increase student awareness of why career opportunities are now in constant flux, examples of globalization and rapid technological innovation are interwoven throughout the text. There is a stronger focus on helping both traditional college-age and adult students present their skills effectively. The Instructor's Manual contains the text's major activities that can be posted on a course management system, chapter PowerPoints, assignments appropriate for ePortfolios, and a test bank.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“This book feels like it is written for you, rather than a condescending voice demanding what is to be done next. This text moves a student smoothly along a career decision and search path while making the experience uniquely personal.” —Nora Kiss, Lakeland Community College

“What I liked most of all was the direct, clear logical yet heartfelt approach of the author” —Pam Miller, Monroe Community College

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780137084456
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall
  • Publication date: 1/21/2011
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 272
  • Sales rank: 514,988
  • Product dimensions: 7.30 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Diane Ducat is a psychologist who has worked with college students for more than 30 years. Dr. Ducat is a professor at LaGuardia Community College, where she was a counselor before joining the faculty that directs LaGuardia's intership program.

Dr. Ducat has taught graduate courses in career counseling and has investigated managerial careers as a member of several interdisciplinary research teams. Her counseling activities center in executive coaching. She holds a master's degree in counselor education from the University of Florida and a Ph.D. in counseling psychology from Columbis University.

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Table of Contents




Part I: Preparing for Success: Understanding Who You Are and What You Need to Know

Chapter 1: Exploring Your Career Options, Step by Step

What Is Your Career Dilemma?

An Important First Step: Be Clear and Specific as You Describe Your Dilemma

Avoid the Errors Some Students Make in Describing Their Dilemmas

Consider Your Life Situation

What Internal and External Obstacles Do You Face?

What Kinds of Information Will Help You Solve Your Career Dilemma?

ASAP: A Systematic Approach to Searching for Information

Your Career Will Unfold in a Rapidly Changing, Interconnected World


1.1: Define Your Career Dilemma and Take Stock of Your Need for Information

Chapter 2: Identifying Your Values and Personality Type

Three Routes to Happiness

Identifying Your Work Values

The Holland Personality Types: Help in Shaping Your Career Goals

The Myers—Briggs Type Indicator®: Consider Your Preferences for Various Work Environments


2.1: Who Are You? Analyze Your Career Dreams

2.2: Take a Work Values Survey

2.3: Put the Holland Personality Types to Work

Chapter 3: Identifying Your Interests and Skills

Your Interests and the Campbell Work Orientations

Your Skills and the Campbell Work Orientations

Portable Skills: Key Assets in the Global Workplace

Don't Overlook Career Stallers

Character Strengths: A Solid Foundation for Career Success

The Impact of Rapid Technological Change

Making Sense of the Information in Your Personal Profile Database


3.1: Assess Your Interests Using the Campbell Work Orientations

3.2: Understand the Skills Associated with Your Career Interests

3.3: Explore One of Your Top Five Character Strengths

3.4: Find Out How Others See Your Strengths and Skills

3.5: Complete Your Portable Skills Profile

Chapter 4: Gathering Information about Careers

The Value of Having Information about Careers

Putting the Career Database and the ASAP Method to Work for You

Step 1: Ask the Right Questions

Step 2: Search for Information

Step 3: Analyze Your Findings

Step 4: Plan Your Next Actions


4.1: Do an Informational Interview on a Career Field

4.2: Comparing Career Options

Chapter 5: Gathering Information about Four-Year Colleges and Graduate Schools

Making Sense of the World of Higher Education

Step 1: Ask the Right Questions

Step 2: Search for Information

Step 3: Analyze Your Findings

Step 4: Plan Your Next Actions

Make Sacrifices Now to Gain Benefits Later

When You Have More Education than Your Family

Should You Consider an Online Degree?


5.1: Do an Informational Interview on a College

5.2: Comparing Colleges

Part II: Setting a Direction: Choosing a Field, Preparing for It, and Showing You Are Qualified

Chapter 6: Making Career Decisions

Setting a Career Direction Is a Process

What’s at Stake: The Significance of Career Decisions

Complicating Factors: Your Identity, Your Commitments, and the Job Market

Listen to Your Heart and Use Your Head

The Decision-Style Window

Resolving Career Decision-Making Conflicts: Making Trade-Offs

Setting Your Career Direction Takes Time

Make a Plan to Implement Your Decision

Think of Your Quest for a Career as a Hero’s Journey


6.1: Mid-point Personal Assessment and Reflectio n

6.2: Making a Plan

Chapter 7: Selecting a Major

Understanding Majors and Degree Requirements

Two Types of Majors: Career-Oriented and Multipotential

Your College Major and Your Career: Is There a Connection?

Will Your Major Affect Your Earnings?

Students Have a Variety of Life Goals

Two Key Actions in Choosing a Major

Make a Balanced Decision: Listen to Your Heart and Use Your Head


7.1: College Majors: True or False?

7.2: Looking at Majors: Preliminary Research

7.3: Do an Informational Interview on a College Major

Chapter 8: Conducting a Job Search

Deciding on a Work Setting

Job Leads: More Is Better

Networking: The Key to the Hidden Job Market

Using College Services and Internship Programs

Mining for Gold on the Internet

Trying Other Sources: Direct Contact with Employers, Ads, Job Fairs, Agencies

Always Remember: Active Methods Are Best

Before You Launch Your Own Business: Get Information and Experience


8.1: Do an Informational Interview on Starting a Business

8.2: Choosing Career, Education, and Job Search Links

Chapter 9: Presenting Yourself: Resumes, Cover Letters, and References

Building an All-Important Tool: Your Resume

Writing an Effective Cover Letter

Compiling a Solid Reference List

How to Deal with Online Resumes

Taking Advantage of the Possibilities in Other Media


9.1: Analyze Your Job and Life Accomplishments Skills

9.2: Checklists for a Winning Resume: What to Include and How

Chapter 10: Presenting Yourself: Interviewing

Key Steps as You Prepare for Your Interview

Get Ready for What They’ll Ask: Anticipating Standard Interview Questions

The Interview: Creating the Best Possible Impression

Following up on a Positive Note

In Salary Negotiations, Rely on the Three R’s

Nontraditional Interviewing: Mastering Other Kinds of Presentations

Dealing with Circumstances out of Your Control

When Your Best Isn’t Enough: Coping with Rejection


10.1: Creating Profiles of Companies, Government Agencies, and Nonprofits

10.2: Composing a Professional Pitch

10.3: Use the S-A-R Format to Explore One of Your Valuable Qualities

10.4: A Checklist for Mock Interview Practice Feedback

Part III: Making Your Experience Count: Practical Advice for Reaching Your Career Goals

Chapter 11: How to Advance Your Career before You Graduate: Learning from Internships, Jobs, and Extracurricular Activities

Seek a Variety of Experiences beyond Your Course Work, Especially Internships

Three Sources of Career-Building Lessons: Taking Challenging Assignments, Observing Key People, Dealing with Mistakes

Challenging Assignments Expand Your Comfort Zone

Learn by Observing Others

Mistakes and Hardship: It’s How You Respond That Counts

Use the Power of Reflection and Feedback to Increase the Value of Your Experience

Celebrate Your Success


11.1: Understanding and Learning from Your Boss’s Style

11.2: Reflecting on Your Experience

Chapter 12: How to Set and Reach Your Goals

Beginning the Process of Setting Your Goals

Five Goal-Setting Principles: Get SMART

Successful Goal-Setters Develop a Learning Mind-set

How to Stay Committed and Motivated

Create a Career Development Plan

Mid-Range Goals: If What You Want Is Five Years Away

Long-Range Goals: Giving Your Life Meaning and Direction


12.1: Make a Career Development Plan

Chapter 13: How to Develop a Strong Career Network

The Importance of Career Networks

Seven Ways Your Career Network Works for You

Overcoming a Resistance to Networking

Build Your Career Networking Skills

Social Networking Sites Can Help You Build a Career Network

Join a Professional Association Related to Your Career Field


13.1: Create Your Career Network Chart

13.2: Do an Informational Interview with a Successful Person

Chapter 14: Reflections

Feeling Confident about Your Career


14.1 Summary Essay: Your Personal Assessment and Reflections



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