Gender differences in the career experiences of counseling psychologists

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Johnson, Berill McGregor
Duckworth, Jane C.
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Thesis (Ph. D.)
Department of Counseling Psychology and Guidance Services
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This study used a survey to look for significant gender differences in the career experiences of doctoral graduates from one counseling psychology program. The following areas were examined: income, employment patterns, professional self-view, motivational values, and satisfaction. The participants in this study were 135 doctoral graduates (93 males and 42 females) who graduated over a 23 year period (1968-1990) from a counseling psychology program at a mid-size midwestern state university. They completed a four page, 34 item questionnaire. Descriptive statistics were used to summarize and describe the data; and analyses of variance, analyses of covariance, chi square tests of significance, and t-tests for means were used to test for significant differences.There were gender differences in the career experiences of counseling psychologists in this study. Male counseling psychologists earned larger salaries and larger total annual income than female counseling psychologists. Females were more likely than males to work part-time-only and males worked more hours than females. However, gender differences in salary and income remained after controlling for the number of hours worked. Experience, defined as the number of years since graduation, was not a factor in income differences, as there were no differences between early and late graduates. There was a tendency for proportionately more women than men to be employed in community mental health centers. Males published more articles than females. Males attached more importance to the motivational value "making a lot of money" and there was a tendency for more males than females to see themselves as scientist-practitioners and for more females to see themselves as practitioners. Both males and females were satisfied with their training and their careers.