Location of Repository

The Educational and Occupational Choice Process: The Case of Agriculture Students in Pakistan

By Sameen Masood


The development of the agriculture sector is crucial to the socio-economic prosperity of Pakistan. Despite its significance, the enrolment trends in agriculture sciences and research and development in this sector have not gained substantial attention. The specific objective of this research is to draw conclusions and make recommendations through which enrolment in agriculture sciences can be facilitated, retention of agriculture graduates can be ensured and barriers in the choice process can be removed. This has been achieved through investigating the choice process of agriculture students by answering the first research questions that seek to identify stages of the choice process. Expanding the understating of the choices and the choice process, the study answers the second research question exploring the influence of various factors on the choices as well as the choice process of agriculture students in Pakistan. \ud This qualitative study was conducted in two different cities of Pakistan where various cohorts of students at different stages of their academic and professional life were interviewed. The thematic analysis of the interview data presents a ‘multi-stage’ educational and occupational choice process detailing the definitions, characteristics, sequences and components of the stages. The outcome of the process is postulated based on the experiences of the earlier stages. The significance of practising ‘choice’ intensifies as unplanned choosers are more likely to drift away from the agriculture profession as compared to planned choosers. Furthermore, the role of locality, gender, social prestige associated with various professions and nature of parental support emerged as choice facilitators or barriers in the choice process of agriculture students. \ud Thus, key recommendations arise for the policy makers in the education sector and in agriculture universities and establishments. Particular focus is required for establishing career guidance facilities, disseminating information at different levels, making small changes in the structure of the education system and addressing misconceptions about agriculture sciences and professions in this field

Publisher: University of Leicester
Year: 2012
OAI identifier: oai:lra.le.ac.uk:2381/10936

Suggested articles



  1. (1997). A guide to conducting consensual qualitative research.
  2. (2001). A hierarchical theory of occupational segregation and wage discrimination.
  3. (1994). A Pragmatic View of Thematic Analysis. The Qualitative Report. 2 (1, Spring): 1-3. Available from - http://www.nova.edu/ssss/QR1BackIssues/QR2-1/aronson.html [Accessed: 15
  4. (2002). A report on the rationalization of the agricultural research system. Published by the Office of the Food and Agriculture Organization,
  5. (1997). A respectable job: factors which influence young asians' choice of career.
  6. (1981). A review of 127 drug abuse prevention programme evaluations.
  7. (1988). A Short Guide to Writing about Social Science. Dallas: Harper Collins.
  8. (2005). A systematic literature review of research into career-related interventions for higher education.
  9. (1997). Accounts, Interviews and Observations.
  10. (2009). Agriculture’ is not a dirty word.
  11. (1993). Alternative Paradigms.
  12. (2005). An analysis of occupational choice in Pakistan: A multinomial approach.
  13. (1999). An analysis of perceptions of Modern Apprenticeships in Wiltshire. Southampton:
  14. (1998). An anti-introspectivist view of career decision making.
  15. (1994). An Expanded Sourcebook: Qualitative Data Analysis.
  16. (1974). An Introduction to Occupational Choice. London: George Allen and Unwin Ltd.
  17. (1994). Analysing Qualitative Data.
  18. (1995). Analyzing Social Settings: A Guide to Qualitative Observation and Analysis. Third edition.
  19. (2000). Analyzing talk and text.
  20. (1993). Another look at rural-non-rural differences in students’ educational aspirations.
  21. (2004). Appendix 1.1: Various Crop Zones in Pakistan Source: FAO,
  22. (1985). Appropriate criteria of the trustworthiness and goodness for qualitative research on educational organizations.
  23. (1999). Armchair walkthrough.
  24. (1995). Aspirations and opportunity structure: 13-year-olds in areas with restricted opportunities.
  25. (1994). Assessing college of agriculture freshmen.
  26. (2005). Attachments to family and community and the young adult transition of rural youth.
  27. (2008). Attitude of secondary school students in Abia State, towards career in agriculture.
  28. (2000). Attitudes of Illinois agri-science students and their parents toward agriculture and agricultural education programs.
  29. (1984). Attitudes to school: a study of fifth year pupils. in Improving Secondary Schools (Hargreaves Report). London: Inner London Education Authority.
  30. (2010). Attracting women into agricultural education: Constraints and best practice’. Strengthening Capacity for Agricultural Research and Development in Africa (SCARDA Briefing Papers).
  31. (2011). Available from - http://jalt.org/pansig/2003/HTML/Greer.htm [Accessed:
  32. (2003). Available from - http://www.finance.gov.pk/s_survey_0607.html accessed on 25-03-2011
  33. (2006). Available from - http://www.finance.gov.pk/survey_1011.html accessed on 25-03-2011 Ministry of Finance,
  34. (1965). Awareness of Dying.
  35. (2008). Basics of Qualitative Research: Techniques and Procedures for Developing Grounded Theory.
  36. (2004). Because it’s Worth it?": education beliefs among young people and their parents in the United Kingdom.
  37. (2005). Becoming a Researcher: A Companion To The Research Process.
  38. (1994). Beginning Qualitative Research: A Philosophical and Practical Guide.
  39. (1993). Beliefs and intentions of counsellors, parents, and students regarding agriculture as a career choice.
  40. (1994). Beware the Perils of Parental Power’, Times Educational Supplement,
  41. (2003). Beyond the qualitative interview: Data preparation and transcription.
  42. (2002). Bourdieu and Education: how useful is Bourdieu’s theory for researchers?
  43. (2006). Career aspirations of selected FFA members.
  44. (1953). Career choice and development: Applying contemporary theories to practice (2nd ed.,
  45. (1997). Career Development in the Context of Family Experiences.
  46. (2008). Career exploratory behaviours of postsecondary agriculture students.
  47. (1992). Careers and Identities. Milton Keynes:
  48. (1991). Careers in agriculture as perceived by high school juniors and seniors.
  49. (1997). Careership: a sociological theory of career decision making.
  50. (1998). Catching goldfish: quality in qualitative research.
  51. (2009). Challenging the myths about madaris in Pakistan: A national household survey of enrolment and reasons for choosing religious schools.
  52. (2001). Checklists for improving rigour in qualitative research: a case of the tail wagging the dog?
  53. (2000). Choice, Pathways and Transitions Post-16:
  54. (1998). Choice: can we choose it? In
  55. (1995). Choosing a Secondary School: Can Parents Behavior Be Described as
  56. (2007). Choosing at school: A model of decision-making behaviour within compulsory education.
  57. (2001). Choosing Futures; Young people’s decision-making in education, training and careers markets,
  58. (1998). Choosing GNVQ.
  59. (1996). Class analysis and the reorientation of class theory: The case of persisting differentials in educational attainment.
  60. (1999). College choice, perceptions and priorities.
  61. (1993). Combining Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches.
  62. (1967). Commitment to science: a solution to science: A solution to student marginality.
  63. (2011). Communicating strategically with generation me: aligning students’ career needs with communication about academic programs and available careers.
  64. (1981). Community interaction: a 'mid-range' focus for theories of career development in young adults.
  65. (2005). Constraints and opportunities with interview transcription: Towards reflection in qualitative research.
  66. (2004). Constraints, challenges, and strengths of public agricultural research system of Baluchistan.
  67. (1997). Constructing choice in continuous and parallel markets: institutional and school leaver’s responses to the new educational marketplace,
  68. (1964). Contemporary Theory in Sociology. Handbook of Modern Sociology.
  69. (1994). Convergence in Career Development Theories.
  70. (2003). Country Report on Decentralization
  71. (2002). Curiosity and Surprise: The Twin Pillars of Research.
  72. (1996). Data Collection and Analysis.
  73. (1996). Decision making among sixteen year olds in the Further Education market place'.
  74. (2000). Designing social research: the logic of anticipation.
  75. (1992). Deterrents to female enrolment in secondary agricultural education programs in Nebraska.
  76. (2006). Does expansion mean inclusion in Nigerian higher education?
  77. (1993). Doing Naturalistic Inquiry: A Guide to Methods. Newbury Park:
  78. (2005). Doing Qualitative Research.
  79. (2007). Dropout risk factors and exemplary programs, a technical report. National Dropout Prevention Center at Clemson. Retrieved
  80. (2007). Education and Career Choice: A New Model of Decision Making.
  81. (1990). Education and Cultural Capital. In
  82. (2009). Education and Employment: the influences on young people’s career decision making in Antigua and the UK. Unpublished PhD Thesis.
  83. (1985). Education and Employment: the Traditional Bonds.
  84. (2010). Education in Pakistan: The key issues, problems and the new challenges.
  85. (2011). Educational choices in action: young Italians as reflexive agents and the role of significant adults.
  86. (1994). Educational plans of minority student participants in a university food and agricultural sciences recruitment program.
  87. (1985). Effective Evaluation: Improving the Usefulness of Evaluation. Results Through Evaluation and Naturalistic Approaches.
  88. (2005). Effective guidance one year on: Evidence from longitudinal case studies in England. DfES/Warwick Institute for Employment Research.
  89. (2005). Employment and higher education: strategies of the linking the higher education with the needs of the labor market. Research and Planning
  90. (2000). Empowering agricultural labour in Ethiopia: The challenges to training and development.
  91. (1985). Ethnography and ethnonursing: Models and modes of qualitative data analysis.
  92. (1995). Ethnography: Principles in Practice.
  93. (2007). Factors affecting employment choices in rural Northwest Pakistan.
  94. (2001). Factors Identified When Selecting a Major in Agriculture.
  95. (2001). Factors influencing career choice of African American and Hispanic graduates of a land-grant college of agriculture.
  96. (2003). Factors influencing career choice of ethnic minorities in agriculture.
  97. (2005). Factors influencing career choices of urban agricultural education students.
  98. (2005). Factors influencing college choice of high school and transfer matriculants into a college of agriculture.
  99. (2004). Factors influencing enrolment in an urban agricultural education program.
  100. (2003). Factors influencing minority enrolment in agriculture education-a qualitative study in an urban school in Illinois. Agriculture education research summary report. Illinois State Board.
  101. (2007). Factors influencing postsecondary education enrolment behaviours of urban agricultural education students.
  102. (1996). Factors influencing secondary students' attitudes towards agriculture in New Providence, The Bahamas. Unpublished PhD Thesis.
  103. (2005). Factors influencing the college choice of urban agricultural education students.
  104. (1992). Factors related to the educational and career choices of talented youth.
  105. (2002). Factors that influence African-American students not to enrol in secondary agriculture courses and not to pursue agricultural related careers as a profession.
  106. (1992). Factors that influence the academic and vocational development of African American and Latino youth.
  107. (2000). Failing Working Class Girls. Stoke on Trent: Trentham Books.
  108. (1990). Farming Is In Our Blood, Farm Families in Economic Crisis.
  109. (1996). Findings from the Scottish Schools Leavers Survey: 17 in 2003. Edinburgh
  110. (2006). First among equals? Evidence of the contemporary relationship between educational credentials and the occupational structure.
  111. (1989). Fourth Generation Evaluation.
  112. (1999). Framing 'Choices': a longitudinal study of occupational aspirations among 13- to 16-year-olds',
  113. (1985). From ethnography to theory: a program and paradigm in the sociology of education.
  114. (1994). From filing cabinet to computer. In
  115. (2003). Generalising from qualitative research. In
  116. (1992). Growing Up in a Classless Society? Edinburgh:
  117. (2010). Helicopter parents should buzz off.
  118. (1991). High school curriculum and aspirations of students in Ohio and southwest Georgia.
  119. (1986). High-ability urban high school seniors’ perceptions of agricultural study and selected recruitment strategies.
  120. (1962). Home, School and Work: A Study of the Education and Employment of Young People in Britain.
  121. (2006). How Do Young People Make Their Choices at 14 and 16? (RR773). Slough: National Foundation for Educational Research. Available from -https://www.education.gov.uk/publications/eOrderingDownload/RR773.pdf
  122. (1994). How fast should agriculture be growing.
  123. (1995). How young people make career decisions.
  124. (1975). Human Capital: A theoretical and empirical analysis, with special reference in education.
  125. (1998). I heard it on the grapevine': 'hot' knowledge and school Choice.
  126. (2008). Impact of higher education on economic growth of Pakistan.
  127. (2008). Influence of career exploration process behaviours on agriculture students’ level of career certainty.
  128. (1993). Interpreting Qualitative Data: Methods for Analysing Talk, Text and Interaction.
  129. (1999). Interviewing for Social Scientists: An Introductory Resource with Examples.
  130. (1996). Interviews: an Introduction to Qualitative Research Interviewing.
  131. (1984). Introduction to Qualitative Research Methods: The Search for Meanings.
  132. (2002). Is the future really female? The impact and implications of gender for 14-16 year olds’ career choices.
  133. (2002). Language, Culture and Markets in Further Education. Unpublished PhD Thesis.
  134. (1992). Learning Should Pay.
  135. (1998). Learning trajectories: travelling towards a learning society?’
  136. (1998). Leaving at 16: a study of factors affecting young people’s decision to leave full-time education. Slough: National Foundation for Educational Research.
  137. (1996). Lessons from Life’s First Teacher: The Role of the Family in Adolescent and Adult Readiness for School-to-Work Transition.
  138. (1981). Life-Stories in the Baker's Trade'. Bertaux,
  139. (1996). Lifetime earnings and the training decisions of young men in Britain.
  140. (2001). Making a difference? institutional habituses and higher education choice.
  141. (2007). Making use of bilingual interview data: some experiences from the field. The Qualitative Report,
  142. (1978). Male-female professionals: A model of career choice.
  143. (1995). Marketing schools to parents – some lessons from the research on parental choice,
  144. (1992). Marketing Strategy and Management. Second Edition.
  145. (1982). Methods of Social Research. Second edition.
  146. (1978). Mind in Society. London,
  147. (2007). Models of educational decision-making. Working Paper 6. NonParticipation in HE Project Series. Available from -http://www.education.soton.ac.uk/files/projects/nphe/Working_Paper_6.pdf
  148. (1999). Myth 19: Qualitative inquiry is not systematic.
  149. (2005). National Education Census 2005: Pakistan. Islamabad: Government of
  150. (1985). Naturalistic Inquiry.
  151. (1994). Nursing as a career choice for women in Pakistan.
  152. (1951). Occupational Choice: An Approach to a General Theory.
  153. (1956). Occupational choices: A conceptual framework.
  154. (1992). On raising the level of economic and social well-being of the people.
  155. (2010). Oxford: Oxford University Press Pakistan Agricultural research Council (PARC),
  156. Paper presented at the Higher Education up Close Conference,
  157. (1997). Parental Behaviors and Adolescents’ Career Exploration.
  158. (2003). Pathways and progression on 16 fashion, peer influences and college Choice.
  159. (1987). Patient Participation in Alternative Perinatal Care:
  160. (2000). Pedagogy, Symbolic Control and Identity: Theory,
  161. (2001). Peer group influence and academic aspirations across cultural/ethnic groups of high school students.
  162. (2004). Perceptions of agriculture students regarding the image of agriculture and barriers to enrolling in an agriculture education class.
  163. (1999). Perceptions of Workplace Discrimination among Black and White Professional-managerial Women.
  164. (2008). Plant Pathology 11. Plant Breeding and Genetics 12. Seed Science and Technology 13. Soil Science 14. Weed Science Appendix 3.5: Illustration of Coding from NVivo Bibliography Adedokun,
  165. (2000). Predictors of student retention in colleges of agriculture.
  166. (1993). Probabilities of job choice and employer selection and male-female occupational differences.
  167. (2000). Productivity Growth in Pakistan’s Agriculture 1960-1996. Unpublished
  168. (2004). Pupils’ attitudes to industry.
  169. (1994). Qualitative Data Analysis. 2nd edition.
  170. (1995). Qualitative methods in health promotion research: some criteria for quality.
  171. (1998). Qualitative Methods: beyond the cookbook.
  172. (1993). Qualitative Research and Psychological Theorizing.
  173. (1996). Qualitative Research Design: An Interactive Approach.
  174. (2000). Qualitative research in health care: Assessing quality in qualitative research.
  175. (1998). Qualitative research methods in health technology assessment: A review of the literature.
  176. (1995). Qualitative research: Qualitative interviews in medical research.
  177. (1996). Qualitative Researching. London: Sage Publication.
  178. (1991). Raising student aspirations: The need to share a vision.
  179. (1992). Rational Choice Theory: Advocacy and Critique.
  180. (1986). Rational Choice.
  181. (2001). Rejecting schools: towards a fuller understanding of the process of parental choice.
  182. (2002). Research, extension, and information: Key inputs in agricultural productivity growth.
  183. (1996). Returns to investment in Ontario University education 1960-1990 and implication for tuition fee policy.
  184. (2010). Role of private sector in higher education of Pakistan: Predicaments and Insights”. Available from -http://works.bepress.com/wasim_qazi/8
  185. (1976). Rosenbaum Tournament Model
  186. (1981). Routes and Results: A Study of the Later Years of Schooling. Sevenoaks: Hodder and Stoughton.
  187. (1995). Rural and urban innercity high school student knowledge and perception of agriculture.
  188. (1992). Sampling in Qualitative Inquiry.
  189. (1997). School Choice in an Established Market.
  190. (1993). Schooling for Jobs: Changes in the Career Preparation of British Secondary School Children.
  191. (2005). Science and Technology Based Agriculture Vision of Pakistan and Prospects of Growth.
  192. (1984). Scientific Criteria for Evaluating Qualitative Studies.
  193. (1945). Self-consistency: A Theory of Personality.
  194. (2006). Shifts in the production and employment of baccalaureate degree graduates from U.S. colleges of agriculture and natural resources,
  195. (2010). Simulating “Stage” Theories: An Exploration with Applications.
  196. (2009). Skill Shortage verses Subject Choice, Case of Pakistan.
  197. (2001). Social class and higher education: Issues affecting decisions on participation by lower social class groups.
  198. (1996). Sociological Perspectives on Word and Career Development. In
  199. (1967). Sociological Theory and Occupational Choice. In
  200. (2011). Specialty choices of medical students and house officers in Karachi, Pakistan.
  201. (2005). Statistical Booklet of Higher Education.
  202. (2000). Stayers and movers: The determinants of post-16 educational choice.
  203. (1998). Structure and agency in youth transitions: student experiences of vocational further education.
  204. (2005). Structure and Agency. In
  205. (1998). Structure/agency. In
  206. (1996). Student decision making and the post sixteen market place. Report to the post sixteen markets project. Centre for Research in Education.
  207. (2006). Student perceptions of the public image of agricultural engineering and their preferred name for the discipline and title degree.
  208. (2002). Students as rational decision-makers: the question of beliefs and desires’.
  209. (1995). Students rationale for selection of agriculturally related courses in high school by gender and ethnicity.
  210. (2007). Styles of career decision-making.
  211. (1999). Survey of current students: Implications for recruitment and retention.
  212. (2000). Teaching and Learning Secondary Science: Contemporary Issues and Practical Approaches.
  213. (2003). Techniques to identify themes.
  214. (1989). Telling Convincing Stories: a Plea for Cautious Positivism in Case Studies.
  215. (2002). The application of qualitative research methods to the study of sexually transmitted infections.
  216. (1991). The concept of agency: a feminist poststructuralist analysis.
  217. (2003). The Concept of Capital: Sense and Nonsense. SSRG Conference.
  218. (2008). The Discovery of Grounded Theory: Strategies for Qualitative Research,
  219. (1967). The Discovery of Grounded Theory: Strategies for Qualitative Research.
  220. (1993). The effects of rural schools and communities on adult adjustment: A ten-year follow-up of rural Iowa youth.
  221. (1979). The Ethnographic Interview.
  222. (2005). The formation of science choices in secondary schools.
  223. (1986). The forms of capital. In
  224. (1983). The Grounded Theory Method: An Explication and Interpretation.
  225. (2005). The importance of respect for empirical findings.
  226. (1954). The influence of peer group upon attitudes towards the feminine role.
  227. (2004). The Influence of the school in the decision to participate in learning post-16.
  228. (1998). The Life Story Interview. Sage University Papers Series of Qualitative Research Methods,
  229. (1988). The Long Interview.
  230. (2001). The political economy of growth without development: A case study of Pakistan. Paper for the Analytical Narratives of Growth Project, Kennedy School of Government,
  231. (1994). The qualitative research interview. In
  232. (1999). The Quality of Qualitative Research.
  233. (2009). The Research Act: A Theoretical Introduction to Sociological Methods.
  234. (2001). The right choice? A follow up to making the right choice. London: Institute for Employment Studies Conroy,
  235. (1998). The role of computer software in the analysis of qualitative data: efficient clerk, research assistant or Trojan horse?
  236. (2000). The role of practical
  237. (2005). The Selection of a Major Field of Study in the College of Agriculture at Kansas State University. Paper presented at the American Agricultural Economics Association Annual Meeting.
  238. (2003). The social construction of graduate employability.
  239. (2009). The social transmission of choice: a simulation with application to hegemonic discourse.
  240. (2007). The study of attitude of the agricultural students on the employment in the rural areas (case study: faculty of agriculture, university of Ferdowsi, year 1382-83).
  241. (1993). The USDA/1890 Land grant university summer internship program: A case study of Lincoln University participants.
  242. (1999). Ties that Bind Farm Men and Women to the Land Unpublished Ph.D. Dissertation
  243. (2003). Transcription approaches to multilingual discourse analysis.
  244. (1962). Transformations of Identity’ in AM Rose (ed) Human Behaviour and Social Processes: An Interactionist Approach.
  245. (1998). Transforming qualitative information: Thematic analysis and code development. Thousand Oaks,
  246. (2000). Transition to college: What helps at-risk students and students whose parents did not attend college.
  247. (2002). Translation as translating as culture.
  248. (2000). Trends in the first year experience,
  249. (1996). Triumphs and Tears: Young People, Markets and the Transition from School to Work.
  250. (2008). Understanding career decision-making and progression: Career ship revisited. John Killeen Memorial Lecture London.
  251. (1999). Unification of sociological theory by the rational choice model: conveiving the relationship between economics and sociology.
  252. (1988). University choice behaviour: A preliminary analysis.
  253. (1996). Users' experiences with qualitative data analysis software: neither frankenstein's monster nor muse.
  254. (1986). Using marketing research to develop studentrecruiting strategies.
  255. (2001). Using NUD*IST Vivo and hypermedia in the analysis, presentation and representation of research on distance education in Swaziland,
  256. (2004). Utilisation of diversity in land use systems: Sustainable and organic approaches to meet human needs”. Tropentag, Witzenhausen. Available from -http://www.tropentag.de/2007/abstracts/links/Khan_GpN0sLQ9.pdf
  257. (1987). Validity in qualitative research: Why the worry about warrant will not wane.
  258. (1998). Vocational pathways and the decline of the linear model. Vocational Knowledge and Institutions: Changing relationships.
  259. (1996). Were They Pushed or Did They Jump? Individual Decision Mechanisms in Education.
  260. (2010). What students want to know about HE: ‘hot’, ‘warm’ and ‘cold’ information. Conference Paper (0174). Society for Research into higher Education. Available from -http://www.srhe.ac.uk/conference2010/abstracts/0174.pdf John Mellor Associates and Asianics.,
  261. (1989). When I grow up I want to be…”: a longitudinal study of the development of career preferences.
  262. (1995). When moving up implies moving out: Rural adolescents’ conflict in the transition to adulthood.
  263. (1964). Work and Motivation.
  264. (2002). Working Paper 5. Southampton: Southampton University. Available from -http://www.education.soton.ac.uk/files/projects/nphe/Working_Paper_5.pdf
  265. (1984). Young people’s perceptions of their occupational decision-making.

To submit an update or takedown request for this paper, please submit an Update/Correction/Removal Request.