Identifying supports and barriers to career self-efficacy and persistence among undergraduate students

Impact: Training impacts

Description of impact

The declining persistence of students in academic programs is a current problem faced by tertiary education institutions worldwide. In the United States, the National Center for Education Statistics (2005) reported that between 20% and 33% of students leave the university without completing their degree. In China, surveys indicate that a number of university students have great difficulty in making career exploration plans and lack the confidence in identifying their first jobs which can lead to high dropout rates (He & Zhou, 2006; Wang, Ma, & Cao, 2006). 
Given our prior work on career development, My co-authors and I were commissioned by the Southern China University of Technology (SCUT) to identify the specific personal and contextual factors that either support or hinder career self-efficacy and persistence among their undergraduate students. Our research resulted in the creation of a report describing how various forms of support from the home and school domains impact the development of student career self-efficacy and persistence in STEM. The report also provided specific recommendations for the development and implementation of strategies aimed at increasing career persistence and self-efficacy. Our research informed the development and implementation of various support initiatives to promote career persistence. This included the provision of personality training and workshops, a redesign of career counseling services, and the establishment of a peer support/mentoring program for first year students.
Impact date1 Jan 20121 Jan 2013
Category of impactTraining impacts
Impact levelBenefit