Do Students’ Career Aspirations Predict their Career Choices? A Qualitative Survey of Advanced Level Secondary School Students in Uganda

  • Anne Ampaire Department of Educational, Social and Organizational Psychology, School of Psychology, Makerere University, P.O BOX, 7062, Kampala, Uganda
  • Mayanja M. Kajumba Department of Mental Health and Community Psychology, School of Psychology, Makerere University, P.O BOX, 7062, Kampala, Uganda
  • Anthony Muwagga Department of Educational Foundations and Curriculum Studies, School of Education, Makerere University, P.O BOX, 7062, Kampala, Uganda
Keywords: Career Aspirations, Career Choice, Advanced Secondary Level Education

Abstract

This article presents findings from a study on- “how students’ career aspirations predict their career choice at the advanced secondary level of education in Uganda”. This was premised on three predictors of career aspirations namely; financial remuneration, employment prospects and opportunity for professional growth. The study aimed at answering the question: Do Students’ Career Aspirations Predict their Career Choices? The study presents qualitative narratives from a survey of 48 male and female students randomly selected from 16 secondary schools in the Eastern and Northern regions of Uganda. The narratives were collected using an interview schedule. These were analyzed using a thematic strategy with inductive coding. The study findings showed that students peg their choices to career they perceive have stable progressive salaries for a decent life. They also look at occupations that will enable them have quick placements and finally career that will allow avenues for further training and robust skills. The results revealed that although most of the students’ career choices were based on the three predictors of career aspirations, other contributory factors including the student’s interest and ability were equally paramount. It was concluded that financial remuneration, future employment, and career growth were critical determinants of career choice at this level of education. It is recommended that education stakeholders should design holistic career support programs for students. These will enable students to access relevant career information, implied prerequisite skills, and the prevailing career path to enable them make appropriate career decisions at this level of education in Uganda.

References

Adnan Bataineh, K. (2019). Impact of work-life balance, happiness at work, on employee performance. International Business Research, 12(2), 99-112.

Ahmed, K. A., Sharif, N., & Ahmad, N. (2017). Factors influencing students’ career choices: Empirical evidence from business students. Journal of Southeast Asian Research, 1-15.

Ajufo, B. I. (2013). Challenges of youth unemployment in Nigeria: Effective career guidance as a panacea. African Research Review, 7(1), 307-321.

Atitsogbe, K. A., Moumoula, I. A., Rochat, S., Antonietti, J. P., & Rossier, J. (2018). Vocational Interests and Career Indecision in Switzerland and Burkina Faso: Cross-cultural Similarities and Differences. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 107, 126–140.

Ayiro, L. P. (2016). Career choices: Dilemmas facing East African varsity students. The East African.

Bani-Khaled, T. A. (2014). Career Intentions of Jordanian Undergraduate Students of English. Middle-East Journal of Scientific Research, 21(1), 249-262.

Braun, V., & Clarke, V. (2013). Successful qualitative research: A practical guide for beginners. Sage.

Cavus, S., Geri, S., & Turgunbayeva, K. (2015). Factors affecting the career plans of university students after graduation. International Journal of Humanities and Social
Science, 5(5), 94-99.

Ehigbor, B. O., & Akinlosotu, T. N. (2016). Parents’ occupation as correlate of students’ career aspiration in public secondary schools in Ekpoma Metropolis. AFRREV IJAH: An International Journal of Arts and Humanities, 5(3), 197-212.

Guan, Y., Chen, S. X., Levin, N., Bond, M. H., Luo, N., Xu, J., ... & Han, X. (2015). Differences in career decision-making profiles between American and Chinese university students: The relative strength of mediating mechanisms across cultures. Journal of Cross-Cultural Psychology, 46(6), 856-872.

Kazi A, A., Nimra S. & Nawazi, A. (2017). Factors Influencing Students’ Career Choices: Empirical Evidence from Business Students: Journal of Southeast Asian Research, 2017, 1-15.

Kisilu, J., Kimani, E. and Kombo, D. (2012). Factors Influencing Occupational Aspirations among Girls in Secondary Schools in Nairobi Region-Kenya. Prime Research on Education (PRE), 2(4), 244-251.

Kiweewa, J. M., Knettel, B. A., & Luke, M. M. (2018). Incorporating comprehensive counselling and guidance models into school curricula in Sub-Saharan Africa. International Journal for the Advancement of Counselling, 40(2), 133-147.

Kunnen, E. S. (2013). The effects of career choice guidance on identity development. Education Research International.

Mghweno, P. E., Mghweno, L. R., & Baguma, P. (2014). Access to guidance and counselling services and its influence on students' school life and career choice. African Journal of Guidance and Counselling, 1(1), 7-15.

Ministry of Education & Sports (2011). Career Guidance Handbook: Careers and Occupational Information for Students and Guidance Practitioners. Kampala-Uganda.

Ministry of Gender, Labour, & Social Development (2015). Violence against Children in Uganda: Findings from a National Survey, Kampala, Uganda: UNICEF.

Mtemeri, J. (2017). Factors influencing the choice of career pathways among high school students in Midlands Province, Zimbabwe. (Unpublished Doctoral dissertation). University of South Africa, Pretoria, South Africa.

NAPE (2015) National Assessment of Progress in Education in Uganda.

Nsereko, N. (2012). The Career Development Industry in Uganda. Nkumba Business Journal, 11,165-180.

Obiunu, J. J., & Ebunu, O. R. (2013). Situational factors as correlates of secondary school. International Review of Social Sciences and Humanities, 5(2), 106-114.

Pascual, N. T. (2014). Factors affecting high school students’ career preference: A basis for career planning program. International Journal of Sciences: Basic and Applied Research, 16(1), 1-14.

Sentongo, J., Ntale, M. &Kyeyune, R. (2010). Teaching Chemistry around the World. New York: WaxmannVerlag.

Simiyu, N. R. (2015). Influence of gender on career choices by students in youth polytechnics in Bungoma County, Kenya. International Journal of Innovation and Scientific Research, 14(1), 83-88.

Super, D. E. (1990). A life-span, life-space approach to career development. In D. Brown & L. Brooks, et al. (Eds.), Career choice and development (2nd ed.), 197-261. San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Taskinen, P. H., Schütte, K., & Prenzel, M. (2013). Adolescents' motivation to select an academic science-related career: the role of school factors, individual interest, and science self-concept. Educational Research and Evaluation, 19(8), 717-733.

Wambu, G. W., & Fischer, T. A. (2015). School Guidance and Counseling in Kenya: Historical Development, Current Status, and Future Prospects. Journal of Education and Practice, 6(11), 93-102.
Published
2021-05-09
How to Cite
Ampaire, A., Kajumba, M., & Muwagga, A. (2021, May 9). Do Students’ Career Aspirations Predict their Career Choices? A Qualitative Survey of Advanced Level Secondary School Students in Uganda. African Journal of Education,Science and Technology, 6(3), Pg 344-351. Retrieved from http://ajest.info/index.php/ajest/article/view/561
Section
Articles