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Product Code: 00004934

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The study examines the effect of Peer Group and Parental Socio-Economic background on Career Choice of business education undergraduates in Lagos State. Specific objectives of the study are to investigate the role played by peer group in career choice of an undergraduate, to find out if parents level of education have any influence on students career choice, and to determine the relationship between peer group and parental socio-economic and career choice of undergraduates. In carrying out the study descriptive research design was employed, the population of the study comprises the entire parent and undergraduate student in the University of Lagos, while the sample size analysed was one hundred and forty five (145), out of the one hundred and fifty respondents sampled.The returned questionnaires were analysed using descriptive statistics while stated hypotheses were tested using chi-square technique. The study found that peer group plays significant role in career choice of an undergraduate; and that parents level of education have significant influence on students’ career choice. The study also established that parental economic status has significant effect on career choice of undergraduate. Based on this, the study recommends that youths should avoid mingling with friends that will lead them into making a wrong career decision. Parent are also encouraged to invest immensely in their children education and not deprive them of the will to pursue their dreams in any way as the study has shown that parental economic status also influences career choice among youths




Title Page                                                                                                               i

Certification                                                                                                           ii

Dedication                                                                                                              iii

Acknowledgement                                                                                                 iv

Abstract                                                                                                                  v

Table of Contents                                                                                                   vi


CHAPTER ONE                                                                                      

1.0      INTRODUCTION                                                                                       1

1.1      Background to the Study                                                                             1         

1.2      Statement of the Problem                                                                             2

1.3      Objectives of the Study                                                                                3        

1.4      Research Question                                                                                       3

1.5      Research Hypotheses                                                                                             3        

1.6      Significance of the Study                                                                             4

1.7      Scope of the Study                                                                                      4

1.8      Operational Definition of Terms                                                                  4

           REFERENCES                                                                                            5



2.0      LITERATURE REVIEW                                                                            7

2.1      Preamble                                                                                                      7                              

2.2      Theories of Career Decisions                                                                       8

2.3      Empirical Review of Previous Works in Related Areas of the Study            14

           REFEENCES                                                                                               22



3.0      RESEACH METHODOLOGY                                                                   25

3.1      Preamble                                                                                                      25          

3.2      Research Design                                                                                          25          

3.3      Population of the Study                                                                               25

3.4      Sampling Procedure and Sample Size                                                          25

3.5      Data Collection Instrument and Validation                                                  26

3.6      Method of Data Analysis                                                                             26

3.7      Limitation of the Methodology                                                                    26

           REFERENCES                                                                                            27



4.0      DATA PRESENTATION AND ANALYSIS                                              28

4.1      Preamble                                                                                                      28

4.2      Presentation ad Analysis of Data                                                                 28

4.3      Test of Hypotheses                                                                                      33

4.4      Discussion of Findings                                                                                37



5.0      SUMMARY, CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDATIONS                    39

5.1      Summary                                                                                                     39 

5.2      Conclusion                                                                                                  41

5.3      Recommendations                                                                                       41

5.4      BIBLIOGRAPHY                                                                                       42

           APPENDIX                                                                                                 45  






1.1 Background to the Study

Schooling days is one time where a youth’s mind is most susceptible to influence, ideas and values which alter the way a person thinks, acts and perceives things (Oyebode, 2010). This is a particularly important moment which will affect one’s own decision-making processes and career choices. Thus, parents are always assumed to play significant role in shaping and influencing how their school-going children make wise career decisions, which inevitably, impact their future career choice. From another perspective, parents are also considered influential which in turn means they also have the ability to influence their children’s future. As students are invariably impressionable, their decisions could be very much influenced by their parents, but peers influence on their choice of career should also not be underestimated (Oto, 2014).


Career may be defined as the progress and actions taken by a person throughout a lifetime, specially related to that person‘s occupations. A career is often composed of the jobs held, titles earned and work accomplished over a long period of time, rather than just referring to one‘s position (Knowles, 2014). (Fayomi, 2012) defines career as an occupation or profession, especially one requiring special training, followed as one‘s lifework. It also defines career as a person‘s progress or general course of action through a phase of life, as in some profession or undertaking (Head, 2015).


Choosing a career is an extremely important decision that impacts an individual‘s entire future. Career exploration is defined as the extent to which possible careers are researched and considered. Research by Breakwell G. and Beardsell (2013), has suggested that exploring career options before committing to a career increases future career success and satisfaction. However, the choice of career by an individual is influenced by various factors and among them parental and social influence is very important. Each individual undertaking the process is influenced by many factors, including the context in which they live, friends and peer group and parental socio-economic background and status (Calkins, 2013).  


Friends and peer group are important for individual socialization  as well  as behavioral  modification  while such group include same-age  group i.e. not necessarily friends while its formation is dependent on multiple factors including situation, an accident, or association (Farley, 2014). The development of a child is initially the outcome of family, however; peer overtakes the socialization process with the selection and adoption of lifestyle, appearance, social activities, academics, career etc (Odusanya, 2008). Similarly, peer and friends are pivotal and dramatic in shaping individuals perceptions, attitudes and ideas to understand the outside world as well as decisions in future lives.               


Parental socio economic status plays an important role in the life of a child. The status opens the ways for his progress. Intelligence, attitudes, aptitudes and even interests are patterned by socio economic background of the individual. Socio economic status refers to the position that an individual and family occupies with reference to prevailing average standards, cultural possession and participation in group activity of community. It is also said that socio economic status includes both the social and economic status of the individual in the group. The variations in achievement are also due to the differences in socio economic status of the children, differential treatment given by parents, parent’s educational level, and influence of the surroundings and so on (Fishbein and Ajzen, 2015). As pointed out by Awolowo (2012) children belonging to higher socio economic status are not only brilliant but also are provided better opportunities for developing intellectually, physically and emotionally, and these has effect on their career choice. Hence, the purpose of this study is to examine the effect of peer group and parental socio-economic background on career choice of business education undergraduates in Lagos State.



1.2 Statement of the Problem

The choice of career made by university undergraduates is greatly influenced by the experience the individual undergoes right from childhood, the type of information made available as he matures and the way the parents direct the vocational choice of their children. The opportunities and facilities available to the child and hence his choice of career can be either facilitated or inhibited to a large extent by the experiences that his parents make available to him.


The problem is, what kind of effects do the peer group and the parental socio-economic background have on the career choice of undergraduates?


1.3 Objectives of the Study

 The objectives of the study is to appraise the effect of Peer Group and Parental Socio-Economic background on Career Choice of Business Education undergraduates in Lagos State

Specific objectives of the study are to:

  1. Investigate the role played by peer group in career choice of undergraduates
  2. Find out if parents level of education have any influence on students career choice
  3. Determine the relationship between peer group and parental socio-economic and career choice of undergraduates
  4. Evaluate the effect of parental economic status on career choice of undergraduate


1.4 Research Question

The following research questions are answered in this study:

  1. What is the role played by peer group in career choice of undergraduates?
  2. Will parents’ level of education have any influence on students’ career choice?
  3. What is the relationship between peer group and parental socio-economic and career choice of undergraduates?
  4. What is the effect of parental economic status on career choice of undergraduates?


1.5 Research Hypotheses

The following hypotheses are formulated for this study.

Hypothesis I

Ho: Peer group plays no significant role in career choice of an undergraduate

Hi: Peer group plays significant role in career choice of an undergraduate

Hypothesis II

Ho: Parents level of education have no significant influence on students’ career choice

Hi: Parents level of education have significant influence on students’ career choice


Hypothesis III

Ho: Parental economic status has no significant effect on career choice of undergraduate

Hi: Parental economic status has significant effect on career choice of undergraduate

Hypothesis IV

Ho: There is no significant relationship between peer group and parental socio-economic and career choice of undergraduates

Hi: There is significant relationship between peer group and parental socio-economic and career choice of undergraduates


1.6 Significance of the Study

The study seeks to assist the educators and educational institutions to have a better understanding of their students on the impact of influences from parents and peers in making career choice. It is also hoped that findings from the study will help the institutions and related bodies to develop a better plan that can guide and expose undergraduates to understand their profession clearly. The study will also educate parents on their role in guiding their children and wards in choosing a career for themselves. The study will also serve as a theoretical basis for future researcher that will be carrying out research around the research domain. Lastly, the study is a requirement for the award of degree in this great institution of higher learning (University of Lagos).


1.7 Scope of the Study

The coverage of the study is limited to appraising the effect of peer group and parental socio-economic background on career choice of business education undergraduates in Lagos State. The focus of this study is on students of the University of Lagos, Akoka, Yaba,Lagos.


1.8 Operational Definition of Terms

It is pragmatically essential to exegesis on the various operational definitions of major concepts of this topic. Below are some of such important terms:

CareerThis refers to what one does for a living, that is source of livelihood, occupation or profession.

Career Choice: Career choice is the occupation or professional path that an individual chooses.

Peers: Peers are one’s age mates, class mates or friends.

Peer Group: This refers to the age group to which a student or an individual belong

Parent: Father and mother of the individual student.

Socio-Economic Background: This refers to the social and economic class or level to which a family belongs in the society. In any society, this could be high, middle class or lower class.

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