ERIC Number: EJ1179069
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018
Abstractor: As Provided
How Do STEM-Interested Students Pursue Multiple Interests in Their Higher Educational Choice?
Vulperhorst, Jonne Pieter; Wessels, Koen Rens; Bakker, Arthur; Akkerman, Sanne Floor
International Journal of Science Education, v40 n8 p828-846 2018
Interest in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) has lately received attention in research due to a gap between the number of STEM students and the needs of the labour market. As interest seems to be one of the most important factors in deciding what to study, we focus in the present study on how STEM-interested students weigh multiple interests in making educational choices. A questionnaire with both open-ended and closed-ended items was administered to 91 STEM-interested students enrolled in a STEM programme of a Dutch University for secondary school students. Results indicate that students find it important that a study programme allows them to pursue multiple interests. Some students pursued multiple interests by choosing to enrol in two programmes at the same time. Most students chose one programme that enabled them to combine multiple interests. Combinations of pursued interests were dependent on the disciplinary range of interests of students. Students who were interested in diverse domains combined interests in an educational programme across academic and non-academic domains, whilst students who were mainly interested in STEM combined only STEM-focused interests. Together these findings stress the importance of taking a multiple interest perspective on interest development and educational choice.
Descriptors: STEM Education, Student Interests, Higher Education, Questionnaires, Decision Making, Vocational Interests, Foreign Countries, High School Students, Grade 12, College Bound Students, Content Analysis, Majors (Students), Regression (Statistics), Statistical Analysis
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research; Tests/Questionnaires
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Netherlands
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A