n South African Journal of Higher Education - The influence of family income on students' career choice at universities of technology

Volume 27, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 1011-3487



Students' future career aspirations and expectations are essential precursors of adult attainment. The study sought to determine the impact of poverty and how family income influences the ability of their children to pursue their preferred career choices. A cross-sectional study amongst Faculty of Education students was conducted at three universities of technology in South Africa. The study sample comprised 141 students. The study found that 69. 2 per cent of the students bemoaned either a lack of or inadequate family income as the most common impediment towards realising their chosen career choices. Furthermore, 34.8 per cent ranked Teaching as the highest career choice, followed by Engineering with 14.2 per cent and Accounting/Finance with 11.3 per cent. Through life-skills courses and programmes, learners should not only be exposed to various career choices, but also made aware of available sources of finance such as bursaries and loans.

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