ERIC Number: ED345657
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1992-Apr-24
Predicting Persistence of Science Career Aspirations: A Comparative Study of Male and Female College Students.
Sax, Linda J.
This paper presents a study that explored the persistence of both women and men towards careers in the hard sciences and examined the factors that encourage and/or discourage students' participation in science. Specifically, the study explored the relationship between men's and women's background characteristics, their college experiences, and their persistence toward careers in science. The study involved analysis of data from 15,519 students in 192 four-year colleges and universities. Among the findings were the following: (1) while 20.6 percent of male college students aspire towards careers in the hard sciences, only 6.4 percent of women shared these career goals; (2) men were higher in persistence rates than women in the biological, physical, and engineering sciences; and (3) of those who alter their career plans away from the hard sciences, males were attracted to business, the military, and law, while women were attracted to business, education, and medicine. Positive associations for persistence in the hard sciences included grade-point-average, math self-rating, and parental careers; and negative associations included raising a family, self-rating in popularity, and parents' income. Also, it was found that men were more monetary-minded in their career choice while women were more concerned with the social good of their choice. Contains 13 references. (GLR)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the American Educational Research Association Conference (San Francisco, CA, April 24, 1992).