Relationship among occupational identity, Attitude toward Work, Age and Gender of First Year University Students in Kenya
Ireri, Anthony M.
Karugu, Njagi I.
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The study aimed at finding out the relationship among occupational identity, attitude toward work, age and gender among Kenyan university students. Participants were 166 first year undergraduate students (103 male, 63 female; age range 17-23 years; M = 19.2; SD = 1.16) enrolled for Bachelor of Commerce and Bachelor of Business Administration degree courses in Dedan Kimathi University. Data collection was done using a questionnaire composed of items adapted from Occupational Identity Scale-Revised (OIS-R) and the Work Opinion Questionnaire. Data were analyzed using factor analysis, correlation analysis and multivariate analysis of variance. A significant positive relationship was found between age and achievement oc-cupational identity (r (164)=.195, P=.05). The results further indicate that attitude toward work had very weak positive correla-tions with age (r (164) = .041, P= .05). In addition, attitude had very weak positive correlations with moratorium (r (164) = .017, P= .05) and foreclosure (r (164) =.021, P= .05) occupational identities. However, attitude toward work had very weak negative correlations with achievement(r (164) = -.022, P= .05) and diffusion (r (164) = -.112, P= .05) occupational identities. No statis-tically significant relationship was found between gender and degree choice (χ2 (1) = 3.651, P = .056). The Hotelling trace test results indicate that boys and girls do not differ in any of the occupational identity statuses (F=1.57, P=0.05). The results reaffirm the view that occupational identity is a complex developmental process involving the interaction of personality, age and other related factors. Areas of further research are suggested.