Date of Graduation
It is important to understand how young adult women select and evaluate goals for the future because in spite of having a variety of available career options, women are still not entering all careers at an equal rate to men (Hakim, 2006), and are primarily engaging in homemaking (Marks & Houston, 2003) or embarking on careers that are considered to be traditionally feminine, such as teaching or nursing (Kmec, 2005; Okamoto & England, 1999). As such, the present study had two primary research objectives, (1) to quantitatively investigate the career- marriage- and child-related goals that young adult women in an individualistic culture set for the future, as well as the factors that were associated with positive or negative evaluations of the achievability of these goals, and (2) to investigate cultural differences and similarities in the self-described goals of collectivist (Korean) and individualistic (North American) young adult women, as well as the factors that influence the selection and the perceived achievability of these goals. Data were collected from 244 undergraduate young adult women using Sona, WVU's online research participation system. With regards to the first research objective, a paired samples t-test indicated that overall young adult women have more future family-related goals (i.e. marriage- and child-related goals) than career-related goals. A structural equation model with both latent and observed variables indicated that optimism, pessimism and external control were associated with young adult women's evaluations of the achievability of future goals. With regards to the second research objective, indicated that there were more similarities than differences in collectivist and individualistic young adult women's future goals, influences on future goals, and practical considerations when setting future goals. In spite of these similarities, there were differences between in terms of barriers and enablers to achieving future goals identified by collectivist and individualistic young adult women. Findings from the present study have implications in terms of career counseling for women, and also provide a basis for further research into young adult women's goal setting and the evaluation of the achievability of future goals.
Mehta, Clare M., "An examination of collectivist and individualistic young adult women's future goals and their evaluation." (2008). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 9407.