What Do I Want to Be? Predictors of Communal Occupational Aspirations in Early to Middle Childhood
AuthorOlsen, Marte; Olsson, Maria I. T.; Parks-Stamm, Elizabeth J.; Kvalø, Marie; Thorsteinsen, Kjærsti; Steffens, Melanie C.; Martiny, Sarah E.
Research investigating occupational aspirations in childhood is scarce. In addition, most research on occupational aspirations has focused on increasing the number of women in agentic, high- paying jobs. Therefore, we investigate factors associated with communal occupational aspirations in two studies with young children (Study 1: 159 children, Mage = 5.51 years; Study 2: 96 children; Mage = 9.44 years). We found that girls aspired more towards communal occupations than boys did among the older, but not the younger, children. When combining the two samples, we found that the more gender stereotypes girls reported, the more they aspired towards communal occupations. In addition, communal self-perceptions mediated the relationship between child gender and occupational aspirations. Lastly, the perceived status of the communal occupations was positively associated with children’s aspirations among older children. Implications for theoretical models of the development of occupational aspirations and early interventions to reduce occupational gender segregation are discussed.
PublisherUiT Norges arktiske universitet
UiT The Arctic University of Norway
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