Applying for higher education career choices and plans
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Applying for Higher Education Career Choices and Plans. Putting Research Outcomes into Practice (PROP) Conference, Tuesday 12th June 2007 Professor Kate Purcell. THE RESEARCH DESIGN. Initial population census with targeted follow-up of under-represented groups.

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Applying for Higher Education Career Choices and Plans

Putting Research Outcomes into Practice (PROP) Conference,

Tuesday 12th June 2007

Professor Kate Purcell


THE RESEARCH DESIGN

  • Initial population census with targeted follow-up of under-represented groups.

  • Reliance exclusively on web-based data collection.

  • Contact with universities and colleges to maintain contact and ‘rebalancing’.

  • Substantial resources devoted to:

    • retention of sample members;

    • co-ordination across HECSU wider research programme;

    • dissemination of research findings.

  • Longitudinal pilot survey, question testing, consultative approach to identification of priorities at each wave.


  • 2006 UCAS APPLICANTS:POPULATION AND RESPONSE AT WAVE ONE

    SURVEY

    RESPONDENTS

    100,411 (82.4%)

    accepted places in HE

    21,461 (17.6%)

    Not accepted

    427,786

    Invited to participate

    in survey (84.5%)

    122,872

    responded

    (24.1% of all

    applicants

    HE NON-

    PARTICIPANTS

    SHORT SURVEY

    7,591

    respondents

    506,304 UCAS

    applicants

    NON

    RESPONDENTS

    223,198 (73%)

    accepted places in HE

    82,716 (27%)

    not accepted

    305,914

    no response

    (60.4%)

    OTHER

    APPLICANTS

    64,000 (85.7%)

    accepted places in HE

    11,000 (14.3%)

    not accepted

    78,518 ‘late applicants’

    or no email supplied

    not e-mailed invitation

    (15.5%)


    FUTURETRACKWave 1TWO RELATED SURVEYS(..at least..)

    Who got first main scheme place?

    HE ENTRANTS

    Who accepted insurance place?

    Who entered through Clearing?

    (and who changed course within first year?)

    Who turned down offered place and why?

    NON-ENTRANTS

    Who took a gap year and why?

    Who failed to obtain a place – and what did

    they do next?


    FUTURETRACK Wave 1

    • Full survey response of 121,427

    • Short questionnaire for non-accepted applicants: 7,591 responses

    • Final response 129,118

    • Application data merged with survey responses

    • Telephone follow-up interviews with targeted respondents


    RESPONSE BIAS

    What bias did we expect?

    • Gender (more women than men)

    • Age (younger rather than mature)

    • Ethnicity (lower proportion of Afro-Caribbean)

    • Social background (fewer working class applicants)

    • Entry qualifications (fewer applicants with low entry qualifications)

    • Non-traditional degrees (fewer on Foundation degrees)


    RESPONSE RATE ANALYSIS


    THE KEY STRENGTHS OF THIS INVESTIGATION

    • Large and comprehensive

    • Longitudinal – from HE application to early career development

    • Detailed data – university/college application data, educational history, socio-economic background and other attributes prior to survey responses and targeted follow-ups

    • Opportunities for methodological development and testing

    • Interdisciplinary research team using both quantitative and qualitative research methods

    • Strong support from HE stakeholder community and collaboration to track students – with data-linking where feasible.


    FUTURETRACKWave 1Some indicative findings(Weighted responses, HE participants only)

    NB: Not to be cited without permission of the research team

    ([email protected])


    MAPPING DIVERSITY

    • Different contexts and sources of information of HE applicants

    • Different ‘HE Terrain’ (and VARIETY of HE Terrain) to which they have access

  • STAGE 1: UNPACKING COMPLEXITY


  • WHO GETS HE PLACES? - BY CONTEXT DURING APPLICATION


    ETHNICITY BY SITUATION WHILE APPLYING FOR HE


    RESPONDENTS’ SELF-EVALUATION: KEY SKILLS PRIOR TO HE ENTRY


    DEGREE OF CLARITY ABOUT CAREER AMBITIONS, BY GENDER


    CLARITY OF IDEAS ABOUT CAREER PRIOR TO COURSE* BY AGE-GROUP


    CAREER PLANNING BY SUBJECT


    • Self-evaluation on range of ‘Excellent’, ‘Very good’, ‘Good’ ‘Adequate’ or ‘Not very good’

    • [1] From higher managerial or professional household (SES1)

    • [2] From categories 0- 11, where 0 = 0 and 11 = 540+ (NB overseas and non-standard qualifications zero-rated)

    • [3] On scale of 1-7 as in previous figures.


    *Self-evaluation on range of ‘Excellent’, ‘Very good’, ‘Good’ ‘Adequate’ or ‘Not very good’ [1] From higher managerial or professional household (SES1)

    [2] From categories 0- 11, where 0 = 0 and 11 = 540+ (NB overseas and non-standard qualifications zero-rated)

    [3] On scale of 1-7 as in previous figures.


    SUBJECT RATIOS - UK/EU/Overseas


    SELECTED MAJOR SUBJECT GROUPS OF COURSES APPLIED FOR, COMPARING ASIAN, BLACK AND WHITE APPLICANTS


    ALL AND MAIN REASONS FOR APPLYING TO ENTER HE


    REASONS FOR CHOICE OF HEI


    ALL AND MAIN REASONS FOR CHOICE OF COURSE


    INFORMATION AVAILABLE TO INFORM HE DECISION-MAKING


    CHOOSING COURSES – EXPERIENCE OF INFORMATION SOURCES


    HOW STUDENTS PROPOSED TO FUND THEIR STUDIES


    RESPONDENTS’ EXPECTATIONS OF DEBT


    DEBTS AND PAID WORK, BY DOMICILE


    ATTITUDES OF RESPONDENTS TO KEY ISSUES


    In the field NOWFUTURETRACK Wave 2:experience of 1st year

    Topics to be investigated include:

    • current situation,

    • evaluation of HE experience – study, paid and unpaid work, extra-curricular activities,

    • HE context – region, type of university/college, travel, accommodation and other resources

    • current career aspirations, use of careers service,

    • finance and debt,

    • obstacles encountered and access to opportunities


    SUBSEQUENT WAVES OF THE SURVEY

    AT THE END OF FIRST DEGREE STUDY (2009):

    • Educational outcomes, career planning and use of careers information and guidance services;

    • The next stage –graduate study, entry to employment, experience of job-seeking, evaluation of fit between education and early outcomes, career plans and choices.

      TWO+ YEARS LATER (2011-2):

    • Where are they now? Early career development, different career paths, impact of advice and guidance;

    • value of higher educations experience and credentials, impact of access to information and Career planning and use of services;

    • evaluation of fit between education and outcomes, longer-term career plans;

    • continuing educational, training and career guidance needs;

    • Integration into the graduate labour market – winners, losers, and what can we learn from their experience?


    OBJECTIVES

    • improve understanding of the career decision-making process;

    • clarify the impact of obstacles and advantages in determining opportunities;

    • provide both an overview of the student population and insight into particular categories of students;

    • reveal where, when, what and for whom careers information and guidance are most effective – and most required;

    • provide unprecedented evidence about the relationship between higher education and early career development to inform practice, policy and debates about ‘the knowledge society’, etc.


    KEY ISSUES

    • Publicity and collaboration with other Stakeholders – particularly HEIs and Careers Services – will be essential to ensure high retention rate;

    • Targeting of under-represented groups required;

    • incentives and role of website important –sponsorship, opportunities, etc;

    • development of panel element, to facilitate the addition of those who failed to participate first time round.


    For further information about

    see www.hecsu.ac.uk OR

    www.warwick.ac.uk/go/glmf

    and follow the links to Futuretrack 2006

    Methodological enquiries to the research team at [email protected]


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