The Australian Educational Researcher

, Volume 42, Issue 2, pp 179–199 | Cite as

School based experiences as contributors to career decision-making: findings from a cross-sectional survey of high-school students

  • Natal’ya GalliottEmail author
  • Linda J. Graham


This paper is based on a study examining the impact of young people’s backgrounds and educational experiences on career choice capability with the aim of informing education policy. A total of 706 students from secondary schools (Years 9–12) in New South Wales, Australia took part in an online survey. This paper focuses on the differences found between groups on the basis of their educational experiences. Participants who were uncertain of their future career plans were more likely to attend non-selective, non-metropolitan schools and were more likely to hold negative attitudes towards school. Career ‘uncertain’ students were also less likely to be satisfied with the elective subjects offered at their school and reported less access to career education sessions. It is concluded that timely career information and guidance should be provided to students and their families in order to allow them to more meaningfully make use of the resources and opportunities available to them with a view toward converting these into real world benefits.


Youth aspirations Career education Career development Post-school transitions Career certainty 


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Copyright information

© The Australian Association for Research in Education, Inc. 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Education, Faculty of Human SciencesMacquarie UniversityNorth RydeAustralia
  2. 2.Faculty of Education, School of Cultural & Professional LearningQueensland University of Technology (QUT)Kelvin GroveAustralia

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