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Children’s Aspirations Towards Science-related Careers

Sheldrake, R; Mujtaba, T; (2019) Children’s Aspirations Towards Science-related Careers. Canadian Journal of Science, Mathematics and Technology Education 10.1007/s42330-019-00070-w. (In press). Green open access

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Sheldrake, Richard, and Mujtaba, Tamjid (2019) - Children’s Aspirations Towards Science-related Careers.pdf - Published version

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Abstract

Science-related careers are often considered to be less accessible by many children. More research is needed to distinguish any influences from different aspects of life so that support and/or interventions can be focused to help mitigate any disadvantage and inaccessibility. In order to gain greater understanding of constraints or influences on children’s aspirations towards science-related careers, a nationally-representative cohort of 7820 children in England was considered at age 11 and at age 14. At age 11, children’s science-related career aspirations were predictively associated with their ethnicity, gender, and science self-confidence, and also (at lower magnitudes) with the children’s motivation towards school and indicators of family advantage. At age 14, children’s aspirations were predictively associated with their prior aspirations (as of age 11), science self-confidence (as of age 14), and again with ethnicity and gender. Notably, these gender and ethnicity associations varied when considering specific aspirations towards science/engineering and towards medicine/health: boys were more likely to express science/engineering aspirations and less likely to express medicine/health aspirations; concurrently, children from some minority ethnic backgrounds were less likely to express science/engineering aspirations and more likely to express medicine/health aspirations. Overall, the findings suggest that support after age 11 still needs to promote the feasibility of different science careers for all children.

Type: Article
Title: Children’s Aspirations Towards Science-related Careers
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1007/s42330-019-00070-w
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1007/s42330-019-00070-w
Language: English
Additional information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
Keywords: Engineering, Health, Longitudinal, Medicine, Science, STEM
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Education > UCL Institute of Education > IOE - Curriculum, Pedagogy and Assessment
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10087407
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