The Structure of Children's Interests and Competence Perceptions

Terence J.G. Tracey, Christopher C. Ward

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

101 Scopus citations


Two studies were conducted with samples of elementary school, middle school, and college students, who were given the Inventory of Children's Activities, which was designed to assess J. L. Holland's (1973, 1985a) RIASEC (Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising, and Conventional) types on interests and competence perceptions. The structure was examined at the scale and item levels using the randomization test of hypothesized order relations and principal-components analysis. Results indicated that (a) there were few differences in structure between interests and competence perceptions, (b) the structure of interests and competence perceptions varied across age, (c) the fit of the circular model was positively related to age, (d) elementary and middle school students evaluated their interests and competencies using different dimensions than did college students, and (e) there were scale score mean differences across gender and age.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)290-303
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of counseling psychology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 1998
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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