Federica Castellini Simona Sacchi Francesco Paolo Colucci

Academic Choice and Future Profession: Vocations and Representations

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The choice of a particular faculty and its consequences in terms of social experiences might be affected by specific individual's motivations and shape representations of the future work. The present research, conducted on 525 undergraduate students attending six different faculties, aims to explore and to understand university students' motivations behind their vocational choice, their representations of the future profession and the definition of «good job». Data - analyzed through qualitative and quantitative methods - revealed significant differences related to the faculty, as well as to gender and socio-economical status: on one hand, Psychology, Education Sciences and Medicine students motivated by pro-social «vocations» and by genuine interest for the topic proved to consistently represent the future work; on the other hand, Economics, Law, Engineering students referred to motivations and professional representations related to self-affirmation (profit, career, status). Moreover the qualitative analyses further specified the quantitative results and highlighted important specificities related to the particular faculties.


  • undergraduate students and work
  • motivations and vocations in academic choice
  • future work representations


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