ERIC Number: ED076244
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1973-Mar
Reference Count: 0
What Do You Want to Be When You Grow Up? Vocational Choice in Children Aged Three to Six.
Kirchner, Elizabeth P.; Vondracek, Sarah I.
A study was conducted to determine the development of vocational aspirations in the years three to six. Ss totaled 282 black and white three- four-, and five-year-olds, 143 males and 139 females. Vocational aspirations questions were individually administered as part of an assessment inventory. Responses were arranged into six categories--all adult (specific occupation, adult, parent), older child, same child, fantasy, nonhuman, and other. Age-related findings show that the all adult category increases significantly with age and that, within the all adult category, specific occupational aspirations increase markedly. During the preschool years, the child comes to project himself into his adult future. Sex-related findings show that, although boys and girls equally frequently give responses classified as all adult, the pattern of their vocational projection is different: (1) boys are more likely to project in terms of an adult role in general, while girls are more likely to project in terms of the specific role of parent; (2) although boys and girls mentioned specific occupations with equal frequency, boys perceived the range of occupations open to them to be wider than did girls; girls' choices clustered around the occupations of nurse and teacher; and (3) girls appeared to be more reality-bound than boys. Race-related findings suggest that black children are less likely to project themselves into adult statuses and their conceptualization of adult role less frequently involves occupational specificity. (KM)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Pennsylvania State Dept. of Public Welfare, Harrisburg.
Authoring Institution: Pennsylvania State Univ., University Park.
Note: Paper presented at the biennial meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, March 29 - April 1, 1973)