• If you are citizen of an European Union member nation, you may not use this service unless you are at least 16 years old.

  • You already know Dokkio is an AI-powered assistant to organize & manage your digital files & messages. Very soon, Dokkio will support Outlook as well as One Drive. Check it out today!


Holland's Theory of Career Selection

Page history last edited by Debra Lee 14 years, 10 months ago

Holland's Theory of Career Selection



John Holland has investigated career selection since the late 1950s. His belief is that there are six basic vocational interests (SIREAC types). Vocational tests have been developed to test a person's interests so vocational counselors can help guide people to careers that will interest them. Studies conducted more recently tend to support Holland's theory that people choose careers that match their interests. That is not to say his theory hasn't been criticized. Schwartz (1992) said that fitting a job with vocational interests may lead to better job satisfaction, but it is not indication of job success or length of employment. (Bjorklund & Bee, 2008).


The SIREAC types

  1. social
  2. investigative
  3. realistic
  4. enterprising
  5. artistic
  6. conventional


Major Theorists

John Holland (1958, 1997)


Citations to Major Works

Helms, S. T. (1996). Some experimental tests of Holland's congruity hypothesis: The reactions of high school students to occupational simulations. Journal of Career Assessments, 4, 253-268.

Holland, J.L. (1958). A personality inventory employing occupational titles. Journal of Applied Psychology, 42, 336-342.

Holland, J.L. (1996). Integrating career theory and practice. In M.L. Savickas & W. B. Walsh (Eds.), Handbook of career counseling theory and practice (pp. 1-11). Palo-Alto: Davies-Black.

Holland, J.L. (1997). Making vocational choices (3rd ed.). Odessa, FL: Psychological Assessment Resources.

Schwartz, R. (1992). Is Holland's theory worthy of so much attention, or should vocational psychology move on? Journal of Vocational Behavior, 40, 170-187.


Web Links


     A $15 web-based test based on Holland's theory with brief explanations of the personality types.


     Information from the North Carolina Career Resource Network


     A "game" from the University of Missour Career Center that is used to help students discover what career interests them most. The game is based on      Holland's personality types.



Comments (0)

You don't have permission to comment on this page.