PERCEPTIONS OF THE GUIDANCE COURSE OF HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS

Introduction

In today’s developed education systems, the main objective of the psychological counselling and guidance (PCG) services is to provide the best conditions for normal individuals to use their capacities fully and to fulfill their expected duties. For this purpose, PCG services are the necessity of the modern education-training systems. Because the aims of modern education-training can be realized within the framework of the PCG services included in the curriculum (Külahoğlu, 2004). PCG services offered at schools are the part of the school curriculum and this program includes activities outside the school as well as planned activities within the school. All extracurricular activities such as celebration of special days, health services and artistic activities should be programmed within the framework of the curriculum. In addition, some of the goals and objectives of the school are directly or indirectly related to PCG services. For this reason, school PCG services have an important place in other components of the curriculum (Erkan, 2018).

Psychological counseling and guidance programs should be appropriate to the students’ level of development as the development and change of the individual is continuous. It is known that the effect of adolescence period on secondary level students is great. At the same time this period coincides with the years of transition to higher education and the students are mostly focused on the choices of their professions. For these reasons, in this period, in addition to professional and academic development, personal and social development issues need to be emphasized (Yeşilyaprak, 2016). The implementation of the courses including these subjects, which are important in the personal, professional, academic and social development of young people, is carried out by PCG services in schools.

The frequent changes in our education system in recent years affect all units of the school. School guidance services, which have an important place in the triangle of students, teachers and parents, are also included in these changes. According to the Guidance and Psychological Counseling Services Regulation of the Ministry of National Education, in accordance with the general aims of the Turkish Education System, some services are expected from PCG for the students to actualize themselves, to take advantage of the training process at the highest level according to their abilities and characteristics and to use their potentials in the most appropriate way (MEB, 2017). These expectations and the changes in time affect the expectations and perceptions of the guidance course or consultant. In the past, the false belief that PCG service can change everything with a magic wand has come to the point of having to be a common understanding and cooperation between the students and related persons when applying the guidance services (Gündüz, 2013).

Psychological counseling and guidance activities in schools are carried out according to student’s needs. In order to make PCG activities more effective, students’ opinions and perceptions about the guidance course have an important place. The evaluation of the guidance services is also important for the development of these units and doing the necessary arrangements. For this purpose, we have researched the literature and obtained information about the existing situation of the guidance services. The present situation has been evaluated for the studies on the each grade level, but it was observed that the effect created by this present situation on the student has not been mentioned at all. For this purpose it is thought that present study may provide an important contribution to the literature.

The aim of this study is to determine the perceptions of the secondary school students about the guidance course and to detect whether their perceptions change according to gender, type of school, class level, income level, and mother and father education level.

Method

The survey design which is one of descriptive models was used in this study. As it is known, in the descriptive models, the situation is tried to describe as it is. In this description, the views of the participants against an event or a situation, the interests, skills, abilities, attitudes etc. properties try to be determined (Büyüköztürk, Çakmak, Akgün, Karadeniz, ve Demirel, 2010, s. 21, Karasar, 2014. s.79). For this purpose, the Guidance Course Perceptions Scale (GCPS) developed by the researchers was used. This scale, which was 14 items, was applied on 2789 students which were selected by stratified sampling on the basis of their school types. To determine whether the student perceptions have changed according to gender, school type, class level, income level, and parents education level the one-way ANOVA test was performed.

Results

The mean value of the perceptions of the students towards the guidance course was found to be 3,29. This average value corresponds to the “undecided” answer interval. It was seen that there was no negative answer when the all items were checked in general. While the majority of the students answered as “Agree” to ” The guidance course is important in helping to correct negative behaviors” and “The guidance course provides information on changes in the education system, professions and higher education programs ” items, they frequently answered as “undecided” to the other items.

When the perceptions of the guidance course of high school students were examined it was indicated that there was a significant difference between genders of the students in favor of girls (F:7,309; p <0,05), in favor of religious schools in terms of the school types (F:8,058; p<0,05), in favor of the 9th grade students according to the class levels of the students (F:7,424; p<0,05). Moreover; in line with the results; there was a significant difference in favor of the parents with income levels of 0-1000 TL (F:6,267; p<0,05) in terms of income levels, in favor of the students that have mothers (F:4,812; p<0,05) and fathers (F: 3,960; p<0,05) having primary and junior high school graduates in the analyzes made by considering the parent education levels of the students.

Conclusion

When the findings obtained from the Guidance Course Perception Scale were examined it was concluded that nearly 50 percent of the students had a positive perception of the guidance course. On the other hand, in the light of the findings, it can be concluded that the students are partly agree on the some items that the guidance course is effective in the school life, facilitates adaptation to the school, improves the problem-solving skills, contributes to their self-actualization, improves their interpersonal skills, contributes to their future professions, meets their individual and educational needs, and supports them in terms of solving their problems. In addition, it can be also said that the students are partly agree on the items that the guiding activities are organized in the groups for their individual and social development, and the measurement and evaluation instruments (scale, questionnaire, etc.) are used to identify themselves and identify their needs in the guidance courses. Besides, the students think that the guidance course encourage them to correct their negative behaviors. Furthermore, it is also seen that, in the guidance course, the students get information about the changes in the education system, the professions, the higher education programs and the universities.

Consequently, the high school students’ perceptions on guidance course according to the various variables are summarized as follows;

It can be said that the female students had more positive perception than male students; the students of religious schools were of more positive perception than the other high schools’  students; the 9th grade students had more positive perception than the other class level ones; the students having parents with income level of 0-1000 TL were of more positive perception than the other income level ones; the students that having parent with primary and junior high school graduates had more positive perception than the ones with the other education level (high school and university).

Keywords: Guidance Course, Guidance Course Perceptions Scale (GCPS), High School Students