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Government policy and choice of undergraduate programme in Ecuador

Rivadeneira Barreiro, Julio Cesar (2019) Government policy and choice of undergraduate programme in Ecuador. PhD thesis, University of York.

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This thesis investigates how government policy has related to the choice of undergraduate programme in Ecuador, and introduces a typology of political dispositions as influential in the selection process. The study relies on the motivations for choosing STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) majors as reported by the students themselves, and their background factors of gender, socio-economic status, geographical region, and prior academic attainment. Data was collected by using a combination of online surveys and in-person structured interviews to first-year undergraduates from two universities: one focused on STEM education, and the other on arts, for comparison. The study revealed that a significant minority of STEM students (45.0%) reported the government message on the importance of STEM as influential in their choice of higher education course. The students reported as top motivations the aspiration to get a high-paid job, start working to contribute to society, their own inspiration, confidence in the subject, interest in the subject, and monetary issues. The government message was more influential among STEM students who were women, lower class, coastlanders, and high achievers. The results confirm previous findings in other countries, in that the government can influence young people to choose STEM subjects. This study advances the literature by showing that students react differently to the government’s message, and affects their choice. This thesis sheds light on what drives the choice of STEM undergraduate programmes in a developing country.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: Career decision-making, government policy, higher education subject choice, STEM, mixed methods, Buen Vivir
Academic Units: The University of York > Department of Education (York)
Depositing User: Mr Julio Cesar Rivadeneira Barreiro
Date Deposited: 27 Jun 2020 00:21
Last Modified: 27 Jun 2020 00:21
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/26577

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