The Educational Aspirations of Students from Romania at the Transition from Secondary to High School. A Longitudinal Study
Keywords:Educational Aspirations, Secondary School students, Educational Expectations, Level of Education
This paper aims to investigate how the educational aspirations of secondary school students, upon graduation from this and the next cycle of schooling, are influenced by personal characteristics (gender), students' expectations and their parents' level of education. Educational aspirations are students' desires to achieve higher levels of schooling or changing orientations that are influenced by a combination of structural background characteristics and an assessment of capabilities, opportunities, resources, and barriers during adolescence. The study used data collected in autumn 2011 and spring 2013 by means of a school and career orientation questionnaire applied to all 8th and later 9th grade students in Bihor County, Romania (same sample in two different stages); and data from the National Assessment. The hypotheses of the study where: with success in the national assessment, at an educational establishment and the transition to a new school cycle, educational aspirations will change upwards, the educational aspirations of pupils whose parents have a high level of education will increase and the educational aspirations of pupils whose parents have a low level of education will decrease and that female students will experience an increase in educational aspirations. In the end, the first two hypotheses of the study were confirmed, while the third hypothesis, concerning the relationship between parental educational attainment and students' educational aspirations, was refuted.
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