A multi-dimensional measure of vocational identity status

Erik J. Porfeli, Bora Lee, Fred W. Vondracek, Ingrid K. Weigold

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

158 Citations (Scopus)


Establishing a worker identity is among the most central aspects of the transition from adolescence to adulthood. Despite its importance, few measures with acceptable psychometric and conceptual characteristics exist to assess vocational identity statuses. This study reports the development and evaluation of the Vocational Identity Status Assessment (VISA), which is derived from established conceptual models and includes career exploration, commitment, and reconsideration dimensions. Results show that the VISA exhibited metric invariance across a high school and university sample. Cluster analyses demonstrated that the VISA consistently resolved six identity statuses across the two samples, supporting the previously established achieved, moratorium, foreclosed, and diffused statuses along with two additional statuses termed searching moratorium and undifferentiated. The identity statuses predicted differences in participants' work valences and well-being with the achieved and diffused statuses respectively exhibiting the most and least favorable characteristics. Implications, limitations, and suggestions for future research based upon these findings are offered.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)853-871
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of Adolescence
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2011 Oct
Externally publishedYes


  • Adolescence
  • Career
  • Identity status
  • Measurement
  • Vocation
  • Young adulthood

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Social Psychology
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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