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1. Pittaoulis, Melissa Anastasia. Getting through School: A Study of How Students Select their College Majors and Plan for the Future.
Degree: PhD, 2012, Temple University
This dissertation examines the strategies that students use for navigating their way through college and the steps they take in preparation for college graduation. I wrote this dissertation because I wanted to understand how students go from being freshmen not long out of high school to young adults prepared (or not prepared) to enter the workforce or attend graduate or professional school. Past research has found that as high school students, many young people are generally directionless when it comes to learning about different career paths (Schneider and Stevenson 2006). Moreover, in the U.S., there is very little structural support for helping students navigate the transition from student to worker. While universities may offer programs that can aid students in finding jobs or applying to graduate schools, it is largely up to students to seek these programs out. This dissertation therefore investigates the question, "How much do college students plan for their post-college lives?" To accomplish my research goals, I focus on two areas in which students may demonstrate planfulness: choosing a college major and planning for post-graduation careers or schooling. I seek to answer three general questions. First, what reasons do students give for attending college? Second, how planful are students when selecting their college majors? Third, how planful are students in preparing for their future educational and occupational goals? To answer these questions, I collected my own data using a mixed methodology research design that included in-depth interviews with 31 students and a survey of nearly 500 college seniors at a large, northeastern university. This study adds to the literature on the transition to adulthood by studying the school-to-work transition. It also contributes to the sociology of education literature by shedding light on how college students make decisions about college majors. The survey shows that many students simultaneously hold both utilitarian and liberal arts philosophies toward higher education. The majority of survey respondents reported that they were motivated to attend college because of both the extrinsic and intrinsic rewards that a college education offers. Meanwhile, the in-depth interviews suggest that parental expectations, which were also commonly cited by survey respondents as reasons for attending college, are very powerful influences in students' decisions to attend college. Regarding college major choices, the survey results suggest that students find school experience more influential than the prospects of a potential career. In total, about two-thirds of respondents gave "present-oriented" rather than "future-oriented" reasons for choosing their majors. When looking at individual reasons for selecting a major, I found that passion for or interest in a subject was by far the reason cited most often as most important. The in-depth interview data provide further insight into the relationship between college majors and post-graduation plans. These interviews show that it…Advisors/Committee Members: Ericksen, Eugene, Grasmuck, Sherri, Goyette, Kimberly A., Joslyn, Richard.
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APA (6th Edition):
Pittaoulis, M. A. (2012). Getting through School: A Study of How Students Select their College Majors and Plan for the Future. (Doctoral Dissertation). Temple University. Retrieved from http://digital.library.temple.edu/u?/p245801coll10,204404
Chicago Manual of Style (16th Edition):
Pittaoulis, Melissa Anastasia. “Getting through School: A Study of How Students Select their College Majors and Plan for the Future.” 2012. Doctoral Dissertation, Temple University. Accessed February 25, 2021. http://digital.library.temple.edu/u?/p245801coll10,204404.
MLA Handbook (7th Edition):
Pittaoulis, Melissa Anastasia. “Getting through School: A Study of How Students Select their College Majors and Plan for the Future.” 2012. Web. 25 Feb 2021.
Pittaoulis MA. Getting through School: A Study of How Students Select their College Majors and Plan for the Future. [Internet] [Doctoral dissertation]. Temple University; 2012. [cited 2021 Feb 25]. Available from: http://digital.library.temple.edu/u?/p245801coll10,204404.
Council of Science Editors:
Pittaoulis MA. Getting through School: A Study of How Students Select their College Majors and Plan for the Future. [Doctoral Dissertation]. Temple University; 2012. Available from: http://digital.library.temple.edu/u?/p245801coll10,204404
The Ohio State University
2. Dean, Janet Blevins. Cognitive dysorganization, prospective memory, and planning.
Degree: PhD, Psychology, 2003, The Ohio State University