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Senior secondary school students’ perceptions of the world of work

Media release 1 minute read

A new report into the perceptions of work held by senior secondary school students provides a valuable insight into the current skills shortage and youth unemployment rate by uncovering a significant mismatch between student career aspirations and the reality of the labour market. The survey of 3,018 year 10, 11 and 12 students from financially disadvantaged backgrounds has found that a majority of students are identifying preferred career paths based on their skills and personal interests with little to no understanding of the availability of these jobs in the current labour market. Most (80%) expect to get the job they would most like at age 25 and few have considered the possibility of compromise should employment in their chosen field be hard to come by. The study, What do students know about work? funded by the AMP Foundation and conducted by the Australian Council for Educational Research (ACER) for The Smith Family also found that a quarter of students were planning insufficient education for their preferred job.

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