Development of interests and competency beliefs in Italian adolescents: An exploration of circumplex structure and bidirectional relationships

Robert W. Lent, Terence Tracey, Steven D. Brown, Salvatore Soresi, Laura Nota

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Scopus citations


In a cross-national replication and extension of prior research with American students, Italian middle and high school students completed measures of interests and competency beliefs relative to a variety of school- and nonschool-related activities. Both interests and competency beliefs tended to show greater adherence to circumplex Realistic, Investigative, Artistic, Social, Enterprising, and Conventional (known as RIASEC) structure with increasing age, but this tendency was more pronounced in female than in male students. Interests and competency beliefs were moderately stable over a 1-year interval, with relatively small percentages of participants exhibiting clinically large changes on either variable. Good support was found for a bidirectional model of interest-competency belief relationships in both male and female students. Implications for further efforts to understand how interests and competency beliefs develop over time and across cultures are considered.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)181-191
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of counseling psychology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 15 2006



  • Adolescents
  • Circumplex structure
  • Competency beliefs
  • Interests

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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