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ERIC Number: EJ1156904
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2017
Pages: 18
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0729-4360
Unpacking the Career Aspirations of Australian School Students: Towards an Evidence Base for University Equity Initiatives in Schools
Gore, Jennifer; Holmes, Kathryn; Smith, Max; Fray, Leanne; McElduff, Patrick; Weaver, Natasha; Wallington, Claire
Higher Education Research and Development, v36 n7 p1383-1400 2017
Demand for higher education in Australia has doubled since 1989, increasing the number of students from diverse social, economic and academic backgrounds. Equity targets have seen a proliferation of programs and interventions aimed at encouraging school students, particularly those from low socio-economic status backgrounds, to participate in higher education. However, little is known about the specific occupational interests of school students upon which targeted strategies might effectively be designed and implemented. This paper examines school students' aspirations for specific careers that require a university education, in relation to student background and school-related variables. The analysis draws from a study of 6492 students from Years 3 to 12 in 64 New South Wales public schools. We found a complex array of factors relating to interest in different careers. Year level at school, gender and prior achievement were stronger predictors across many careers than factors such as SES, Indigenous status and school location. We argue that rather than taking a one-size-fits-all approach to encouraging participation in higher education, outreach activities should be targeted to take account of student diversity and inequalities that foster differing aspirations.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Australia
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A