The relationship between student’s mathematics achievement and career aspirations in Kandara Sub-county, Kenya
The study examined if a direct relationship exists between students’ mathematics achievement and their career aspiration. This research was conducted in Kenya among sampled secondary schools in Kandara Sub-county. Career aspirations of form one and form three students were examined in the study. The study was guided by four objectives, namely, establish the extent to which student’s mathematics performance influence their career aspiration, examine if the gender difference in mathematics performance affects career aspirations, establish whether career aspirations of students are influenced by the type of school they are in and to find out if age of a student influences their choice of career. It also tested six hypotheses that were based on the objectives. This research follows both descriptive and causal comparative designs. The target population included all form one and form three students and career guidance teachers in public schools in Kandara Sub-County. The research was conducted on 300 secondary students of which 150 were females and 150 males drawn from six schools (12%) out of 50 schools in the sub-County. A questionnaire was used to collect data from the students. The researcher interviewed Career masters/mistresses .Cronbach’s alpha of each variable was used as an internal consistency measure. Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) was used to analyze .The study used tables and percentages for descriptive interpretation of the data; means to identify the aspirations of the respondents while analysis of variance (ANOVA) was used to assess gender variation. The results showed that students had much confidence in choice of subjects, mathematics was positively correlated with career aspirations, gender of students showed positive association with career aspirations of students, age of students study showed positive association but not significant association with career aspirations and type of schools influenced career aspiration in public secondary schools. The study concluded that mathematics achievement greatly influenced the career aspirations of students in public secondary schools. The study recommendations are: guidance and counseling departments to popularize mathematics amongst the girls in girls and mixed schools, more efforts by schools are needed to improve performance in mathematics in mixed day schools, universities to lower cluster points for girls interested with mathematics related courses, schools to invest more in facilities that may enhance teaching and learning of mathematics in public secondary schools and incentives should be promised to students who excelled in mathematics and especially the girls.