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Who Struggles Most in Making a Career Choice and Why? Findings From a Cross-Sectional Survey of Australian High-School Students

  • Natal’ya Galliott (a1), Linda J. Graham (a2) and Naomi Sweller (a3)


This article reports findings from an empirical study examining the influence of student background and educational experiences on the development of career choice capability. Secondary school students attending Years 9–12 (N = 706) in New South Wales, Australia, were invited to participate in an online survey that sought to examine factors influencing their readiness to make a career choice. The survey included questions relating to student demographics, parental occupation, attitudes to school and to learning, career aspirations, and students’ knowledge of the further education or skills required to achieve their desired goal. We found no significant differences in the proportions of students who were ‘uncertain’ of their future career aspirations with respect to their individual characteristics, such as age and gender. There were, however, significant differences in relation to students’ family background, and their perceptions associated with their own academic abilities and self-efficacy.


Corresponding author

address for correspondence: Natal’ya Galliott (nee Shcherbak), Department of Education, Macquarie University, Rm 807, Building C3A, Macquarie University NSW 2109, Australia. Email:


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