Careers in AgricultureBenchmarking the views of students and teacherson careers in agriculture and its associatedindustrie...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011                                       Queens House                          ...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011                                          CONTENTS         1      INTRODUCTIO...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Introduction   2
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 1       INTRODUCTION This report examines data from research with secondary ...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 2        RESEARCH OBJECTIVES  STUDENTS         To explore and measure young...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 3.      METHODOLOGY & SAMPLE Research with students and with teachers / care...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Having introduced agriculture to the discussion, the group were then asked t...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 3.2       STUDENTS – QUANTITATIVE RESEARCH In order to measure the scale of ...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 3.3     TEACHERS & CAREERS ADVISERS As part of the wider research project ex...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 3.3.2 Profile details A total of 26 teachers and careers advisers returned c...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 3.3.3 Respondent details The survey was addressed for the attention of the c...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011                              4. SUMMARY & CONCLUSIONS 4.1.   STUDENTS – SUMM...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011    Girls are typically more varied in their choices, but lean more towards ...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 63% have some exposure to agriculture, rising to 67% of students from rural ...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 When asked what appeals most about the agricultural industry, 67% could choo...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 4.2    TEACHERS AND CAREERS ADVISERS – SUMMARY Twenty six careers co-ordinat...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011    Teachers and careers advisers place greatest emphasis on Visits to busin...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Whilst some stressed the wide variety of different types of agricultural rol...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 4.3    CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS Agricultural awareness Most children ...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Practical experience of different jobs, including good quality Work Experien...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011  GROUPS: Perceptions  Where we are now…  …Where we need to be, to attract a ...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011                       5. RESEARCH WITH STUDENTS AGED 12-18 YEARS The section...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Among those aged 16-18 (at sixth form or college), half are studying AS or A...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 5.2     PLANS FOR THE FUTURE Among those aged up to 16, the majority plan to...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 2c. Have you had any thoughts about what you would like to do for your caree...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011          I‟ve given it a thought. I would like to have a go at trying to be ...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011      Jack (aged 13), is keen to join the Army, as a mechanic. He wants to go...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 5.3     USEFUL INFORMATION ABOUT CAREERS We asked students about what was mo...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Other variations:     Children from ethnic minority backgrounds are more li...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011     Opportunity to travel – very important for some, particularly those who...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011             Boy aged 16-18, Chester le Street Working environment:         ...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 5.4      SOURCES OF INFORMATION Almost two thirds of children feel that Work...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 5.4.2 Sources of information – groups In the groups, much of children knew a...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Despite no longer being part of the curriculum for Year 10 students, work ex...
Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Online:            I‟ve looked online for military things, RAF stands and mu...
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture
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Research commissioned by the Careers in Farming and Food Supply Initiative to understand the views of students and teachers towards careers in agriculture.

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Childwise research: the views of students and teachers on careers in agriculture

  1. 1. Careers in AgricultureBenchmarking the views of students and teacherson careers in agriculture and its associatedindustriesResearch ReportAutumn 2011Prepared for:Bill Graham - Farming & Countryside Education (FACE)Victoria Harris – Business in the Community (BITC)‘Careers in Agriculture’ CampaignPrepared by: Jenny Ehren, Rosemary Duff, Simon Leggett, CHILDWISETelephone: 01603 630054 Email: jenny.ehren@childwise.co.ukCHILDWISE - 6224 / 6232 / 6233 MOORE
  2. 2. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Queens House 123-129 Queens Road Norwich NR1 3PL Tel: 01603 630054 Fax : 01603 625054 Email : research@childwise.co.ukCHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Autumn 2011 1
  3. 3. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 CONTENTS 1 INTRODUCTION 3 2 RESEARCH OBJECTIVES 4 3 METHODOLOGY & SAMPLE 5 3.1 STUDENTS – QUALITATIVE RESEARCH 5 3.2 STUDENTS – QUANTITATIVE RESEARCH 7 3.3 TEACHERS & CAREERS ADVISERS 8 4 SUMMARY & CONCLUSIONS 11 4.1 STUDENTS – SUMMARY 11 4.2 TEACHERS AND CAREERS ADVISERS – SUMMARY 15 4.3 CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS 18 5 RESEARCH WITH STUDENTS AGED 12-18 21 5.1 GENERAL INTERESTS 21 5.2 PLANS FOR THE FUTURE 23 5.3 USEFUL INFORMATION ABOUT CAREERS 27 5.4 SOURCES OF INFORMATION 31 5.5 INTEREST IN & KNOWLEDGE OF CAREER DESTINATIONS 36 5.6 AGRICULTURE AND ITS ASSOCIATED INDUSTRIES 44 5.7 CASE STUDIES FOR JOBS IN AGRICULTURAL INDUSTRIES 54 5.8 CAREER RELATED WEBSITES 66 6 RESEARCH WITH TEACHERS AND CAREERS ADVISORS 70 6.1 CAREER RESOURCES 70 6.2 CAREER RELATED ACTVITIES 76 6.3 CAREERS IN AGRICULTURE 79 6.4 ADVICE TO STUDENTS 86 6.5 CASE STUDIES IN AGRICULTURAL INDUSTRIES 90 6.6 COMMUNICATING AGRICULTURAL OPPORTUNITIES 92 APPENDIX QUESTIONNAIRE – STUDENTS QUESTIONNAIRE – TEACHERS AND ADVISERSCHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Introduction 1
  4. 4. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Introduction 2
  5. 5. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 1 INTRODUCTION This report examines data from research with secondary school students aged 12-18 and teachers / careers advisers, conducted by CHILDWISE during Autumn 2011. Research was commissioned on behalf of the recently launched „Careers in Agriculture‟ campaign – a joint industry led campaign designed to promote positive perceptions of agriculture and its associated industries. The purpose of this research is to explore the current perception of careers in farming and its associated industries among young people, and to a lesser extent, teachers and careers advisers – what do young people find appealing about this industry, and how are they made aware of the different career options available to them. This will provide a benchmark against which the future success of the CIA campaign can be measured. The report brings together three complementary modules of research, with the aim of providing credible and robust data, supported by an in-depth understanding of the issues involved. 1. Qualitative research with students aged 12-18 years 2. Quantitative research with students aged 12-18 years 3. Interviews with teachers and advisors responsible for providing careers advice to young people Data for students and for teachers / advisers are presented separately within the report.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Introduction 3
  6. 6. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 2 RESEARCH OBJECTIVES STUDENTS  To explore and measure young people‟s perception of the agricultural industry o Awareness of the range of opportunities within agriculture o Attitudes and expectations towards careers in agriculture o Perceived benefits of a career in this industry o Perceived barriers or limitations and possible solutions to these  To explore and measure how they find out about careers in general, and the implications for agriculture o How, when, and from whom do they find out about careers o What information about careers are they looking for o What channels and approaches do they use o Which approaches work best o How can careers in agriculture best be communicated TEACHERS & CAREERS ADVISORS  To establish: o Awareness of the range of opportunities within agriculture o Perceptions of agriculture as a career, compared with other options o Extent to which they provide advice about / promote agricultural careers among students  To explore: o Main careers-related resources used – online, printed, other o Role of visits, work experience, speakers, careers fairs etc o What information about careers they are looking for o Which approaches work best o How can careers in agriculture best be communicated  To identify: o Examples of good / useful / popular careers resources – what makes these successful o Examples of less successful material, why does this failCHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Introduction 4
  7. 7. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 3. METHODOLOGY & SAMPLE Research with students and with teachers / careers advisers was carried out during October and November 2011.  Students – qualitative research  Students – quantitative research  Teachers / careers advisers – semi-structured online questionnaire 3.1 STUDENTS – QUALITATIVE RESEARCH 3.1.1 Methodology & sample We carried out six discussion groups with boys and girls aged 12-18 years. Two of these groups were carried out via a school from the CHILDWISE panel (rural), whilst pressures on timing resulted in the remaining four groups being recruited outside of school during the half term holidays. In order to focus this element of the research on those who, in the broadest sense, are potential candidates for an agriculture related career, students with an interest in science, maths, geography and business studies were selected to take part. Fieldwork took place in Sheringham (Norfolk), Altrincham (Manchester) and Chester Le Street (County Durham) between 12-28 October 2011. Locations were chosen to reflect the views and opinions from students in rural, suburban and urban communities. Those in the suburban area were chosen as being above average ability levels, to reflect the Campaign‟s desire to attract bright and progressive individuals. Students in the remaining groups represented a cross section of abilities and circumstances. Group Structure: Boys Girls TOTAL Norfolk Chester le Street 13-14 yrs (Year 9) 2 (Rural) (Suburban) Altrincham Norfolk 15-16 yrs (Year 11) 2 (Urban) (Rural) Chester le Street Altrincham 17-18 yrs (Year 13) 2 (Suburban) (Urban) 3 3 6 The groups opened with a short discussion about plans for the future, and trusted sources of information. It then moved on to look at the extent to which the students are aware of the wide range of career destinations available to them, and the type of information that interests them most. This was then followed by a mapping exercise in which students were asked to arrange a list of example careers, including agriculture, into specific groups e.g. those that are similar, those which you would consider.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Introduction 5
  8. 8. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Having introduced agriculture to the discussion, the group were then asked to discuss how much they know about this industry, and more specifically, whether it is a path that they have previously considered. Students talked about which elements had the greatest appeal, plus any perceived barriers and limitations that they associate with this sector. The next part of the discussion introduced six case studies of young people who have pursued a career in agriculture. Students were asked to read these in pairs and highlight and discuss elements that interested / surprised them, plus features that put them off. The final part of the discussion revealed the current dilemma facing the agricultural industry – students were asked to think about which elements capture their enthusiasm and interest most, and how these could be effectively communicated to young people their age. They were also shown screen grabs from existing careers websites, and asked to provide their thoughts on these. 3.1.2 About the Groups Norfolk (Rural)  Smaller than average school, situated in rural Norfolk  Achievement and standards are good  The school‟s curriculum has improved in recent years, particularly by the inclusion of more vocational options in both the main school and sixth form  The proportion of students from minority ethnic backgrounds is below average  The school has specialist arts status  The number of students in the sixth form is increasing Chester le Street, County Durham (Suburban)  Area on the fringe of Tyneside / Durham conurbations – some came from Gateshead  Students for the groups were selected to be above average in ability  Students drawn from a number of different schools serving the area  The proportion of students from minority ethnic backgrounds is below average  Three of the schools have specialist status – sports and community college, specialist technology college – with some rated outstanding, whilst the fourth is a catholic 11-18 mixed comprehensive.  All the schools have a sixth form, offering traditional A / AS Levels and also vocational qualifications, including BTEC. Altrincham, Manchester (Urban)  Students in the groups attend grammar and comprehensive schools, plus some at the local FE college. Because this is a densely populated urban area, there is a wide range of different schools nearby  Some of the girls attend a girls only catholic school  Students spanned the range of abilities  Although Manchester is an area with a high ethnic minority population, the proportion from ethnic minorities in this particular part of the wider area is relatively low  One of the schools is a specialist sports college, sponsored by the local football club.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Introduction 6
  9. 9. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 3.2 STUDENTS – QUANTITATIVE RESEARCH In order to measure the scale of views and opinions among young people, students throughout England were asked to complete an online questionnaire about their perceptions of the agricultural industry, via schools from the CHILDWISE panel. An online approach facilitates a streamline questionnaire, with students only seeing the questions that are relevant to them, plus answer codes can be randomised to avoid order bias. However, all schools were given the option to complete the survey on paper if they preferred.  37 Schools and Colleges took part in total, covering schools with and without a sixth form, plus Sixth Form and FE Colleges.  Locations were chosen to represent views and opinions from those living in urban, suburban and rural communities  1581 interviews were achieved with boys and girls aged 12-18 years  Data weighted to adjust imbalances during fieldwork  Fieldwork was conducted in November 2011 3.2a Sample Profile Years 8-9 Girls 17% 15% Year 8-9 Boys 19% Year 10-11 Boys Year 10-11 Girls 24% 12% Year 12-13 Boys Year 12-13 Girls 14%CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Introduction 7
  10. 10. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 3.3 TEACHERS & CAREERS ADVISERS As part of the wider research project exploring young people‟s awareness and perceptions of careers in agriculture, we also carried out a small scale consultation with teachers and careers advisers. Whilst parents, family and friends are the most important influences in children‟s career choices, schools play a significant role, particularly in relation to choosing courses and exploring options. Current changes in the career advisory system mean that there is a degree of uncertainty at present. Funding is being withdrawn from Connexions and Aimhigher, with the emphasis shifting to general online services. Work Experience is no longer part of the curriculum for Year 10 students. In addition, the changes in HE funding and the shortage of jobs for young people mean that traditional approaches are coming under scrutiny. This element of the research looks at:  Careers resources used by teachers and advisers  Use and importance of careers-related activities  Examples of good and poor resources  Knowledge of career opportunities in agriculture and associated sectors  Agricultural qualifications  Perception of a range of agricultural careers, using case studies  Resources that would be most useful to teachers and careers advisers 3.3.1 Research Approach Careers co-ordinators or equivalent from schools, colleges and advisory groups across England were invited to take part in an online survey, which combined pre-coded and open questions in order to explore response. A total of 26 teachers and careers advisers returned completed questionnaires, primarily from schools and colleges across England, but also one careers advisory company. The focus of the survey – Careers in Agriculture – was not disclosed until later in the questionnaire, to avoid biasing participation towards those with an interest in the topic. Respondents had the chance to enter a Prize Draw, with two prizes of £50, as an incentive to take part. The main wave of fieldwork took place from 11-31 October 2011, with a small number of additional responses in early November (after Half Term).CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Introduction 8
  11. 11. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 3.3.2 Profile details A total of 26 teachers and careers advisers returned completed questionnaires, primarily from schools and colleges across England, but also one careers advisory company. Half the returns were from schools with a sixth form (13), slightly fewer from schools without a sixth form (9), plus three colleges – two sixth form colleges and one FE college. SCHOOL / COLLEGE COLLEGES: 1 CC – non teacher 3 Adult Adviser Work-related learning School with sixth form co-ordinator School without sixth form 13 Sixth Form / FE College 9 Guidance Company SCHOOLS WITHOUT SIXTH FORM: SCHOOLS WITH SIXTH FORM: 5 Careers co-ordinator – teacher 5 Careers co-ordinator – teacher 1 Careers co-ordinator – non teacher 7 Careers co-ordinator – non teacher 2 Senior teacher – CEIAG responsibility 1 Working with several schools 1 Working with several schools Schools and colleges were divided between urban, suburban and rural areas:  Urban 4  Suburban 14  Rural 6  No information 1 Geographical location:  North 4  Midlands 8  South 12  No information 1CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Introduction 9
  12. 12. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 3.3.3 Respondent details The survey was addressed for the attention of the careers co-ordinator at each school or college, and this was the job role in the majority of cases (18). The sample divides between careers co-ordinators who are teachers (10) and those who are not (8). Other roles include careers advisers working with more than one school (2), and senior teachers with specific responsibility for CIAG / IAG (2). PROFILE – RESPONDENT ROLE 3 Careers co-ordinator - 2 teacher Careers co-ordinator - non 10 teacher 1 Careers adviser working with several schools / colleges 2 Careers adviser at a specific school / college Senior teacher with CEIAG/IAG responsibility Other 8 TEACHERS: History (2), RE, Philosophy, Ethics (2), PSE (2), Citizenship, Librarian; Careers only (3) Among the teachers, three focused on careers only, but others taught a variety of subjects, including History (2), PSE (2), and Ethics (2). None of the teachers were from a science background. One taught Business Studies. Schools without a sixth form are more likely to have a teacher in the careers role, whilst non teachers predominate in schools with sixth forms. Most give careers advice across the full age span, with involvement concentrated at Years 9 to 11 (present in schools with and without a sixth form).CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Introduction 10
  13. 13. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 4. SUMMARY & CONCLUSIONS 4.1. STUDENTS – SUMMARY 1581 students aged 12 to 19 (school years 8 to 13 or equivalent) from 37 schools and colleges across England took part in the online survey. Data was weighted to ensure representation by age and sex within urban and rural areas.  Six discussion groups with 12-19 year olds with an interest in science and related subjects explored the issues in depth. Almost half of 12-16 year olds (47%) enjoy at least one school subject which is potentially relevant to agriculture, with 32% interested in one of the Sciences and 27% enjoying Maths. 14% enjoy Geography and 13% Business Studies. For those aged 16-18, at sixth form or college, half are studying A levels relevant to agriculture (48%), whilst one in four is taking a vocational course (27%). Among those aged up to 16, the majority plan to stay on at school post 16 (71%). One in four intend to leave school and get a job (25%), and 11% are planning an apprenticeship or job with training. Seven in ten sixth form / college students hope to go to university (69%). One in four across the full age range know exactly what job they would like in the future (27%), but half have a few different ideas (50%), and 13% think it is too early to decide.  Children‟s career decisions tend to be based on their interests, and the subjects they consider themselves to be good at. Faced with a vast number of possibilities, they learn to discriminate on the basis of limited and sometimes outdated information. Agriculture figures low on the list of job areas that they might consider, with just 4% thinking of this. This is not helped by a limited understanding of what agriculture means and what it might entail.  In the groups, most assumed that this is a more formal word for farming. Their first instinct is to suggest manual, labour intensive occupations, although with some encouragement, several of the children tentatively suggest links with science, engineering and natural resources – although this is a real struggle for some. Career areas which have links with agriculture have wider appeal. 11% would consider each of Science, Engineering, and Working with animals, whilst 13% are interested in Business / Marketing. Just 4% are interested in a career related to the Environment.  Those in the groups are very receptive towards the prospect of a career in science – they recognise this as a professional and prestigious industry, and expect the entry requirements to demand a high level of qualification and expertise, something which appeals to the high achieving students. Careers in Business and Marketing are also of interest.  Boys are particularly enthusiastic about careers in Engineering, Technology and Design. These are regarded as modern and innovative industries that again demand a high level of skill and expertise.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Summary 11
  14. 14. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011  Girls are typically more varied in their choices, but lean more towards standard, office based professions. All three groups liked the idea of a career that involves managing people, and two out of the three showed enthusiasm for Technology and Design based careers. Factors which are important when choosing a job / career reflect children‟s desire to make the most of their talents and go as far as possible.  High salary (41%), Career progression (32%), Family / friends will respect (32%)  Reasonable salary (29%), Part of a team (29%), Positive contribution (28%)  Good holidays (25%), Opportunity to travel (22%), Flexibility (20%) There is a lower level of interest in Being outdoors (12%), or Working with animals (7%). When considering ways of finding out about careers, almost two thirds of children feel that Work experience is one of the most useful ways of finding out about the range of careers choices (63%), whilst two in five mention the Internet (41%). One in three choose Visits to workplaces (34%), Careers advisers (33%), Personal experience (33%), or Practical hands-on experience (30%). They are less sure about Visits from experts (27%), Advice from teachers (21%), or Careers fairs (18%).  The internet is the main source of information for those in the older groups, plus younger students who have been motivated to source information for themselves. Opinions of careers teachers or advisor are mixed – some are happy with the time and advice they have been given, whilst others feel they have not been made aware of the range of choices available.  Visits from industry experts and recent graduates are regarded as a popular alternative to reading material. It appeals to most children, but particularly those who lack the motivation or direction to look up information themselves. Children find it easy to relate to the speakers, plus they enjoy having the opportunity to ask questions and get honest feedback. They feel that they know relatively little about agriculture, in absolute terms and when compared with other industries. 5% know a lot, and a further 30% know a little, but more than half say they know nothing about careers of this kind (54%). They feel they know far more about Business / marketing and about Medicine, and slightly more about Construction, the Environment, and Engineering. Even among students from rural areas, only a minority claim knowledge of agriculture (41%).  Jobs that children and young people come across as part of their daily lives e.g. doctor, plumber, teacher, fireman – are more often top of mind. Several also mention professional occupations, such as law and accountancy. Some children (particularly boys) are not motivated to search for more information, so instead they look to their immediate family and friends for inspiration.  Their awareness of different careers becomes more varied and specialised with age, reflecting wider experiences and increased knowledge.  Agriculture is not an industry that is top of mind for them, although careers they think of spontaneously that link with the industry include Scientist, Mechanic, Engineer and Gardener. There was just one mention of Farmer.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Summary 12
  15. 15. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 63% have some exposure to agriculture, rising to 67% of students from rural areas. Farm visits with their family (29%) or their school (29%), plus TV programmes about farm s and farming (25%) are the main types of exposure. 12% have family or friends who work in farming, 9% know people working in other agricultural jobs. These numbers rise to 25% and 15% respectively among children from rural areas. When asked specifically about working in agriculture, 4% definitely want to do this, a further 7% say that it is one of the choices they are considering, and 12% see it as one of many possibilities. Rural students are more likely to definitely want to work in agriculture (6%), but numbers seeing this as a possibility at all are similar for rural (24%) and urban (23%) students. For those who would consider a career in agriculture at all, some are influenced by the role of science and research in the industry (33%), others by the fact that they enjoy looking after animals (31%). Being able to plan their own day (26%), working outdoors (25%), the fact that they care about the environment (21%), and that this is an important and worthwhile career (18%) are also factors in children‟s choice. Only small numbers mention having family who work in agriculture (13%) and no need for qualifications (12%). The majority of those who would not consider agriculture are just not interested (64%), but others say the don‟t know enough about it (38%), and one in four are put off because they feel it could be repetitive and boring (26%). This underlines the widespread lack of knowledge of the range of careers in this sector. A minority have more specific concerns, including poor pay (14%), limited career advancement (11%), a generally less progressive industry (10%), and one that is limited to those from a farming background (13%).  Few children believe that there are opportunities in the Agricultural industry for those from non-farming backgrounds. They assume that experience is the key to success, with those from farming families at a distinct advantage.  Unlike many other industries they can see no obvious point of entry, besides working their way up from the bottom, which many are reluctant to even consider. Many children fail to recognise that advanced qualifications will enable them to enter at a higher level.  Based on their existing knowledge, few see Agriculture as an academic option, and therefore are unaware that there are specific qualifications and courses available.  Any specific reference to Agriculture or Farming is off-putting for most children – once they see this, they would look no further. They find it hard to come up with alternative terms or descriptions – but agree that jobs in this sector which focus on Business and Science are more appealing Case studies: 14% of students found at least one of the example jobs very interesting, rising to 60% who found one or more either very or quite interesting. This contrasts with just 23% who earlier showed any receptivity towards a career in agriculture. The most appealing aspects are the salary (52%), the fact that the jobs are challenging / rewarding (24%), job satisfaction (24%), the business skills required (21%), and the level of responsibility (20%). 81% of students could identify at least one aspect that appeals to them.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Summary 13
  16. 16. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 When asked what appeals most about the agricultural industry, 67% could choose at least one aspect that appeals to them. Responses were diverse, suggesting that different paths will prove more successful with certain students.  Having a good work life balance (23%), Flexible hours (21%),  Being practical / hands on (21%),  Making a difference (21%), Working with others (20%),  Being independent (19%),  Working with animals (19%), Being outdoors (19%) Children’s response to the case studies demonstrates how interest in agriculture can potentially be boosted. Initial levels of interest: • 4% select Agriculture from a list of career areas as one that is of interest to them • 23% of children have some degree of receptivity to agriculture as a career – • 4% definitely want to do this, • 7% say it‟s one of the choices they are considering, • 12% say it is one of many possibilities When presented with the Case Studies, designed to show the greater diversity of agricultural careers, levels of interest rise significantly: • 14% are very interested in at least one of the three they are shown, • 60% are very / quite interested in at least one of these Websites Students in the groups looked at a selection of careers websites to give their views on how useful each might be to them, when seeking careers information.  Children were drawn towards websites that gave them the flexibility to search for careers based on their interests.  The Army Role Finder site was voted the best because it had a good balance of pictures and text, and looked relatively easy to navigate.  They like websites that have bright colours (Lantra and Tomorrow’s Engineer), although a solid background colour often gives an impression of clarity.  Case studies and random job generators appeal – they like the prospect of discovering a job they hadn‟t previously considered or heard of.  The Tomorrow’s Engineer site also appealed because it looked creative and a bit different, without compromising on the detail.  Some children liked the idea of videos, whilst others prefer text, particularly bullet points.  Several children were quite disappointed by the bConstructive website, with comments suggesting that it was dull and boring. Although some felt it looked quite professional, they didn‟t feel that it reflected their perception of the industry The Careers in Agriculture website received a mixed response.  Several of the groups were quite critical of it, suggesting that the pictures and colours reinforced the farming stereotype, whilst others felt it looked less professional than some of the other sites.  But some felt the amount of text was about right, and the pictures at the top of the screen appealed to some.  Opinion was divided on the site logo, with some suggesting that the building blocks were childish, and others recognising this as quite creative.  Most considered the word „Agriculture‟ to be off-putting – not a site they would ever use. 9CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Summary 14
  17. 17. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 4.2 TEACHERS AND CAREERS ADVISERS – SUMMARY Twenty six careers co-ordinators or similar from schools and colleges across England completed an online survey exploring their use of careers resources and attitudes to agricultural careers. Careers resources Teachers and careers advisers use an extensive range of different materials. Some examples crop up frequently, but we also had a long list of items that were mentioned by just one or two respondents. There is a broad mix of government / public sector, commercial and industry-related material. All the schools use careers games and quizzes to help students find out about HE options and future careers. The majority use Kudos, followed by The Real Game (used by just over one in three), Fast Tomato and Careerscape (each used by around one in four), whilst a smaller number mentioned JED (Job Explorer Directory), Higher Ideas, Launchpad, Career Companion and U-explore. The majority of general careers resources used are non commercial – Next Step (Directgov) is used by one in three, others refer to the Department for Education, and almost half name a Connexions or local authority site specific to their area. The main commercial site is eCLIPS, with one in five mentioning this. Most are aware that there is a wide range of specific industry sites available to find out more about careers in certain fields, but it is only those sites relating to the most popular employment areas that are widely known by name – the Armed Forces, NHS, Uniformed Services and Construction. One careers co-ordinator mentioned Lantra. Whilst some careers co-ordinators will have these sites at their finger tips, it is easy for the less used ones to get overlooked. A minority still see a role for printed materials. Basic careers directories such as Careers 2011 and Job File are available as reference / a starting point in several schools and colleges, whilst leaflets from eCLIPS or Connexions (Working In …) are also mentioned. When considering resources that are particularly good, key points included:  Importance of interactive material, to engage young people and to make it quick and easy to find what they are looking for  Material that gets students thinking, reflects real life  Comprehensive / trusted / focused / well prepared  Resources that can be adapted to fit specific needs, or can be used in conjunction with other material – putting together a solution that best suits their students When thinking about examples of poor materials, main concerns are about printed material, including unsolicited leaflets, and material that is over-long or poorly written. Events and activities Most of the schools and colleges offer Work Experience, Visits out of school / college to business careers fairs etc, and Visits or talks in school from industry etc. Just under half hold some kind of careers event, such as a Careers Week, or shorter events. A minority run their careers activity on an individual or small group basis.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Summary 15
  18. 18. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011  Teachers and careers advisers place greatest emphasis on Visits to businesses etc, closely followed by Work Experience and Visits / talks from businesses. Two of the schools pointed out that current education reforms mean that WE is under threat.  Careers-related visits out of school are also widely popular and considered very important. Some mentioned problems in participating as fully as they might wish, including disruption to the school day, cost issues, and accessibility in rural areas.  Teachers and advisers are equally committed to events which bring industry and other potential employers in to school or college.  A few also mentioned linking careers into the curriculum, including running enterprise days where students can build on their business studies and other learning.  There were comments about the difficulty of getting organisations to attend school careers events, making it hard for teachers and advisers to organise a worthwhile event. Opportunities in agriculture Levels of knowledge and involvement for careers opportunities in agriculture vary widely, from those who have close links with local agricultural colleges, to those who would need to search out the necessary information. On balance, teachers and advisers feel that they know less about career opportunities in Agriculture, compared with other career areas. Teachers are more likely to claim a higher level of knowledge than specialist careers advisers, as are those from schools without a sixth form. Those who know less about agricultural careers put this down to a lack of interest among their students, limited opportunities in their area, and poor perceptions of the industry, but also difficulties in accessing information. Working at a school in a rural area is no guarantor of good knowledge about the Agricultural industry – two of the six respondents from rural areas felt that they knew less about Agriculture than about other career areas. Local agricultural colleges are the major source of information, plus input from local employers. LANTRA, library resources, Connexions and college prospectuses, and the website careersinagriculture.co.uk, were also mentioned. When asked to give examples of different agricultural careers, some focused mainly on the more obvious roles, whilst others showed a clear gasp of the range of different careers that are available. Examples included more skilled and specialist jobs, and jobs away from the conventional core of food production and animal husbandry eg sales and marketing, research, alternative land use. When asked to describe a career in agriculture, some responses reflected traditional stereotypes, others were more aware of the diversity of careers available. Main themes included hard work and dedication, low pay and low status, plus links with those from a farming background, but also links to science, and a varied, worthwhile and rewarding job. When prompted with a list of words, most see a career in agriculture as involving Hard work, being Physically demanding, and linked to a Family business, but also Skilled. Around half see this as a Rewarding career – in terms of the satisfaction of doing a good and worthwhile job – whilst rather fewer consider this to have Good opportunities or be Innovative. Only a minority specifically see this as Poorly paid, however. Overall, the view is more positive than that held by the majority of students, and a couple of teachers pointed out that their students‟ views would be more stereotypical than their own.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Summary 16
  19. 19. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Whilst some stressed the wide variety of different types of agricultural role, and hence the range of students who might find such jobs suitable, others see this as particularly suited for less academic students, and those from farming backgrounds. The majority are rarely, or never, asked about careers in agriculture, with only a handful often consulted. Interest is more common in rural areas, and for suburban schools in areas with countryside nearby. But half of the rural schools said that such enquiries were rare. The most common response to such requests is to direct students towards the local agricultural college. Many stressed the wide range of relevant qualifications, depending on the chosen career path, from NVQ to a degree or post graduate studies, whilst others (generally those who receive fewer enquiries) highlighted the relevance of specific subjects – science, business studies, geography, IT and engineering. For qualifications suitable for students interested in working with animals, teachers and advisers point out the diversity of options open, with advice depending on the student‟s academic ability and interest. Most frequent references are to Veterinary science, where students need to take science subjects in preparation for their degree. Response is less clear-cut for qualifications at a lower level. Some mention animal nurse / veterinary assistant, kennel assistants, pet shops, zoo keeping, animal charities. Marine biology (one mention) and equine work (three mentions) also feature. Just one mentioned farm worker. The basic “Animal Care” gets mentioned more often than the potentially higher level “Animal Management” or “Animal Welfare”. When considering the chance of getting a job after qualifying, opinions are mixed, and each path is seen as having benefits and drawbacks. Animal Care is the animal-related course that is seen to have the greatest appeal to students. Veterinary courses and Animal / Veterinary nursing courses are also seen as popular, whilst one or two mention Equine and Animal Management. When considering the case studies, respondents commented on the diverse range of careers featured, and on the fact that these include jobs for those of higher ability. Several commented that the examples would broaden students‟ perceptions of what an agricultural career might involve. Two respondents express reservations about the relevance of such jobs to their students. New resources When asked about the type of resource that would be most helpful to them, teachers and advisers were strongly in favour of Work experience opportunities. Speakers to come in to school / college were also popular, as were Materials etc to display at school / college careers day, and a Website. Posters and Case studies / videos for different careers are less widely supported. Half would like to see Events focusing on agricultural careers, and just under half would like to see Leaflets. Most would expect to hear about these resources either via an email to schools or email newsletter, or through a website with online information. A minority would expect information by post, or through Connexions, Lantra / farming body / publisher. It is clear that some advisers are already widely aware of the opportunities available in agriculture, but lack the resources or persuasive power to encourage their students to consider these. The local colleges play an important role in supporting those who have discovered an interest, but outside help is needed to address the wider student community.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Summary 17
  20. 20. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 4.3 CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS Agricultural awareness Most children have a limited knowledge of agriculture, and what they do know is partial and based on stereotypes. This limits their interest in agriculture as a career area. They need to become aware that the agricultural industry stretches beyond farming, and includes jobs that require specialist qualifications and use science and business-related skills. The word “agriculture” discourages further enquiry. It is generally not fully understood, typically seen as the formal word for farming, sometimes not known at all, but almost always having negative associations and images. The reaction for many is to switch off. Whilst some are conscious of the sale and distribution of farm products, most find it hard to visualise the inputs and support services that are needed. This is not necessarily unique among industries, but the face of agriculture (farm / farmers) is less compelling, compared with eg medicine (doctor, nurse), the music industry (singers, groups), sport (footballers). The Agricultural Industry needs to raise its profile among young people:  Build wider awareness of the diversity of careers  Communicate that there are careers for all levels of ability and qualifications  Find and promote better “poster boys” for the industry  Find ways round the prejudice against the terms “agriculture” and “farming”  Work with urban as much as rural students, to exploit talent and receptivity Links with the curriculum Children‟s career choices are often based on school subjects that they enjoy and are good at, and farming / agriculture is at a disadvantage in not having an obvious route or starting point. The links that do exist may not suggest good career opportunities. In geography, the focus is often on third world countries / developing economies / environmental issues, putting farming in a non progressive light and restricting interest. For GM foods, it is the pros and cons of this that are debated: the science behind the discovery and development of these techniques is not addressed. Farm visits and TV programmes tend to reinforce stereotypes (animals, small scale, artisan, organic food, heritage links). Whist this can appeal to some, it puts too many others off. The Agricultural Industry needs to improve the accuracy and scope of the image of agriculture that emerges from schools:  Providing teaching materials / Case Studies for schools to use in lessons that reflect agriculture in a wider and more progressive way  Ensure that farm visits include the bigger picture, via pre visit / post visit resources / exercises, and as part of the visit itself With around half of all students enjoying subjects that are relevant to a career in the agricultural industry, the pool of potential recruits for agriculture is wide. The challenge is to ensure that more of these students consider agricultural careers among their wider options. Career choice Children are open to a wide range of career options at age 12-13 / School Years 8-9, but then narrow this down, by ruling some areas out. They need to learn about the breadth of agricultural opportunities at this age, before they exclude this by default. For the majority of students who have no clear career in mind, academic choices are a combination of choosing subjects that they enjoy / are good at, whilst making sure that they leave their options open. This instinct for flexibility continues up to HE level and beyond.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Summary 18
  21. 21. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Practical experience of different jobs, including good quality Work Experience, is seen as an important way of finding out more, but this is increasingly difficult for students to access, with outside support for Year 9 Work Experience coming to an end, fewer part time jobs available for young people, and an ongoing perception of restrictive regulations.  Supporting Work Experience places in the wider agricultural industry could help improve young people‟s awareness of the diversity and quality of careers available  Positioning agricultural jobs in their wider context, keeping choices open Careers advice Careers advice often focuses more on educational choices than on career destinations. Even at age 16-18, many students feel it is too soon to make a choice, and the changing career landscape reinforces this viewpoint. Schools and students are biased towards an academic route if this is a possibility, this carries greater recognition and kudos, and students feel that they are doing their best and fulfilling their potential. This militates against agriculture as a career because it is not generally linked with academic qualifications. Schools careers advice is currently under pressure because of re-organisation. Wider school budgets are stretched. Online resources are becoming more important, with the Connexions service replaced by an all ages careers site. There is less scope for individual personal guidance and interpretation, leaving some students uncertain as to what to do. Resources Careers games / quizzes and other online resources are widely used in schools, but in order to be effective, these need to be introduced well and the output discussed and put in context. Many students have tales of the seemingly random career suggestions that have come out of these activities, and tend to dismiss this as a joke rather than see these as a springboard for further ideas. The selection of agricultural careers that is included on these resources needs to be monitored to make sure that this is comprehensive and projects the right image. This is not always the case at present. Teachers / careers advisers often know about wider agricultural opportunities, but may not suggest these unless specifically asked about agriculture. These jobs also need to feature on the list of science or business possibilities, if a wider pool of students is to be attracted. Ways in which this can be promoted / improved:  Response to requests for attendance at careers events – local agricultural colleges are often good here, but a wider presence may be needed.  Carry out a comprehensive audit of popular careers resources to find out what agricultural opportunities come up currently for a student with relevant skills and interests searching for careers (directly and via associated paths). Initial impressions are that this is very patchy, often distorted / partial / misleading or downright odd.  Learn from successful / popular careers sites eg Army, Tomorrow‟s engineer, nhs – attracting young people to look further, structuring their search so that they can home in on what is relevant. The case studies used in the research definitely widened the appeal to students, and made them more aware of the diversity of the sector, the potential salaries, the level of qualifications that are relevant, the type of skills used (science, business). Ensuring that such job profiles reach as wide an audience as possible will improve chances of attracting recruits.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Summary 19
  22. 22. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 GROUPS: Perceptions Where we are now… …Where we need to be, to attract a wider audienceCHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Summary 20
  23. 23. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 5. RESEARCH WITH STUDENTS AGED 12-18 YEARS The section below brings together findings from the two modules of research with students. Research results for teachers and advisers are presented separately, in the next section. In this section, we cover findings from both the online survey among 1581 students aged 12 to 18 (school years 8 to 13), and the six discussion groups with students. Feedback from the groups, including children‟s own comments, is used to amplify and illustrate the statistical data from the online survey. For both aspects of the survey, the interview asked initially about general career choices, then focused on agriculture and their views of this as a career. The reporting follows a similar format. 5.1 GENERAL INTERESTS For many children, particularly those who have no clear plans about their future, their career path is a progression from subjects that they have enjoyed at school. Among those aged up to 16, top three subjects (apart from Art and PE) are Design & technology (40%), ICT (35%) and English (33%). Design & technology and ICT are both more popular with boys, English is top choice for girls. For subjects with greatest relevance to agriculture, 32% of students chose at least one of the sciences, 14% enjoy Geography, and 13% Business Studies (rising to 19% of 14-16s). Almost half enjoy at least one of Science, Maths, Geography or Business Studies (47%). 1a. Which subjects, apart from art and PE, do you enjoy most at school? TOTAL Gender Age Other % Boys Girls 12-14 14-16 groups: Design & technology 40 43 37 58 22 Black 52 ICT (computing) 35 42 28 40 30 Asian 47 English 33 28 39 37 29 Asian 43 Maths 27 32 21 30 23 Asian 37 History 24 25 24 27 22 Chemistry 21 24 19 29 14 Asian 29 Biology 21 20 23 23 20 Asian 29 Physics 16 20 12 18 14 Rural 24 Geography 14 15 13 16 12 Business Studies 13 11 15 7 19 White 15 Modern languages 12 13 12 15 10 Rural 21 Economics 2 2 2 2 2 Don’t enjoy any 4 4 4 2 5 Base: All aged 12-16 (1182)CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 21
  24. 24. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Among those aged 16-18 (at sixth form or college), half are studying AS or A Levels in subjects that are relevant to agriculture – science, maths, business studies, economics or geography. Just over three in four are studying AS or A Levels in different subjects (77%, including a significant proportion who have subjects from both groups). One in four is taking a vocational course (27%). Boys are marginally more likely to be taking an agriculture-relevant AS / A Level, also a vocational course, but differences are small. 1b. Which of the following qualifications are you studying at the moment? TOTAL 16-18 Gender Location % Boys Girls Urban Rural AS / A2 – Other subjects 77 77 76 75 82 AS / A2 – Science, maths, business, economics, 48 52 44 47 51 geography Vocational course 27 29 24 26 32 GCSE retakes 5 4 7 6 4 International Baccalaureate 0 0 1 1 - Base: All aged 16-18 (399)CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 22
  25. 25. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 5.2 PLANS FOR THE FUTURE Among those aged up to 16, the majority plan to stay on at school post 16 (71%). One in four intend to leave school and get a job (25%), and 11% (rising to 14% among boys) are planning an apprenticeship or job with training. The majority of those planning to stay on at school or college are not yet sure what they will study (50%), whilst a smaller number intend to take AS / A Levels (24%) – girls and older students are more likely to have decided on this option. Numbers intending to leave and get a job drop with age, from 30% at age 12-14 to 19% among 14-16 year olds. This option appeals more to students in urban areas. 2a. What do you hope to do after you have completed your GCSEs? TOTAL Gender Age Other % Boys Girls 12-14 14-16 groups Stay on but not sure 50 46 54 49 52 Rural 56 what to study Look for / get a job 25 26 24 30 19 Rural 19 AS / A2 levels 24 20 27 18 29 Get apprenticeship / 11 14 7 11 11 job with training Full time vocational 6 5 7 6 6 Rural 9 course International 3 4 3 3 4 Baccalaureate Other full time course 3 4 3 4 2 Don’t know / No reply 14 13 15 19 10 Base: All aged 12-16 (1182) For those already in the sixth form or at college, two thirds want to go on to university (69%). This rises to three in four girls (74%), and almost all students from Asian backgrounds (92%). 2b. What do you hope to do after you have completed the course(s) you are on? TOTAL 16-18 Gender Other groups % Boys Girls Go to university 69 65 74 Asian 92% Get a job 12 17 8 Get an apprenticeship 7 5 8 Don’t know / no reply 11 13 10 Base: All aged 16-18 (399) We asked children and young people across the age group about their plans for a career.  One in four already know exactly what they would like to do (27%), with little difference between boys and girls, or – perhaps surprisingly – across the age range. This suggests that firm decisions are made early, but for others, a decision will not be made until work is on the horizon. Firm plans among 12-14s are likely to be far less specific than plans held by 16-18s, as career knowledge grows.  Half have a number of different ideas about what they might do (50%), again with little difference by age, but with a higher proportion of girls in this position.  13% have had some thoughts, but feel it‟s too early yet, and 5% haven‟t given it much thought at all so far. Boys are more likely to fall into these categories.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 23
  26. 26. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 2c. Have you had any thoughts about what you would like to do for your career yet? TOTAL Gender Age % Boys Girls 12-14 14-16 16-18 Know exactly what job 27 28 26 24 28 28 I would like Have a few different 50 46 55 52 50 49 ideas Sometimes think 13 14 11 12 11 15 about it but too early Haven’t given it much 5 7 3 6 6 3 thought yet Don’t know / no reply 6 6 5 6 5 5 Base: All aged 12-18 (1581) 5.2.2 Plans for the future - Groups Most of the children in the groups had given some thought to want they want to do in the future, with plans becoming more definite with age. Those who are yet to decide, typically boys, are generally awaiting some sort of intervention from others e.g. teachers, family. A few of the younger girls (13-14), had recently taken part in some role play games in business studies that peripherally involved careers (probably the Real Game), but until they decide their GCSE options in February, this is not something they plan to give much more thought. Decisions tend to be based on interests, and the subjects they consider themselves to be good at. Faced with a vast number of possibilities, they learn to discriminate on the basis of limited and sometimes outdated information. Children who choose professions that aren‟t typically represented by core subjects at school (e.g. Army, Plumber), are likely to have a strong adult influence outside of school, often a relative or family friend. Some also have a part-time job of some kind (e.g. paper round, shop work, dog sitting). These children recognise the importance of having work-based experience – they know that it shows that they have a good work ethic, plus it also helps to give them a better understanding of the opportunities available to them, as well as helping to them to identify the features they enjoy, and are good at. Those who know what they want to do have a strong sense of self belief – they are very much aware of their own strengths, and in some cases their weaknesses too. Decided: I‟d quite like to either join the navy or go into the medical service, be a doctor or a surgeon. Well my dad is in the RAF so I‟ve been thinking about it for a little while and I really do like biology so I‟m drawn to the medical side of things. Boy aged 13-14, Norfolk I want to join the RAF…to see the world really. First I wanted to be a policeman but I went off it a bit, I thought I‟d join the RAF instead. I went to the careers office with my dad, that was really good. Boy aged 16-18, Chester le StreetCHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 24
  27. 27. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 I‟ve given it a thought. I would like to have a go at trying to be like a doctor or something… medical… but I know how difficult it is… get a degree and a PhD… 7 years… I‟ll go with what I‟ve got and see how far I‟ll get. I like maths and science… they‟re my two strong points in school. Boy aged 13-14, Norfolk I‟ve made quite a lot of plans. I want to come to sixth form and study foreign languages and then I want to go to uni where I do a course where I get a year abroad to become fluent in French and German and then I want to teach English in a foreign country. Girl aged 15-16, Norfolk I want to work in construction. Electrics. I‟ve started it this year in school. If I can do good in it I can carry it on in sixth form. Boy aged 15-16, Altrincham I’m going to go to university and do a maths and engineering degree Boy aged 15-16, Altrincham Undecided: I haven‟t really thought about what job I‟m going to take when I‟m older… my sister did loads of art and photography and yet she got a job on a train… so the first few jobs can be random… Boy aged 13-14, Norfolk Once you’ve got your degree you’re alright, it‟s just making sure that you get there. Boy aged 16-18, Chester le Street The influence of others: I think with friends and family it’s surprising how many different links to different jobs there are. …the amount of jobs your family have tried and they never really worked out… they might have enjoyed it… there are quite a few possibilities that people have done that they haven‟t necessarily ended up doing as a career. Boy aged 13-14, Norfolk One of my dad’s friends used to work in F1 doing fuel and that… so I was speaking to him a few years ago and I started to watch it after that. Then when you get to where they go and everything, that‟s when I wanted to start doing it. Boy aged 15-16, AltrinchamCHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 25
  28. 28. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Jack (aged 13), is keen to join the Army, as a mechanic. He wants to go on tour so that he can make a positive contribution in life – “It‟s not the money side that I‟m that bothered about, it‟s helping people”. He doesn‟t think he will do particularly well at school, and doesn‟t see university / HE as path suited to him. Instead, he knows that the army will accept him with average grades and he believes that they will give him a future that many other industries couldn‟t / wouldn‟t. The option to travel also appeals. Daisy (aged 15) is adamant that she wants to go to university, possibly to study something like the history of art. She‟s not sure what course yet – a degree is a degree, and it shows that you can apply yourself and work hard. Chloe shows a keen interest in Science, and she is the most receptive of her group to the agricultural case studies. But she feels the information should have been communicated to her when she was younger, when she was perhaps more impressionable. Max (aged 16) wants to be a forensic scientist – he has an interest in it, sparked off by watching CSI. He plans to do A level maths, biology, then a degree – Connexions helped him find out about what was needed for forensic science, he told them what he wanted to do then they looked this up and printed him out information. Connor (aged 17) wants to go into business, but doesn‟t know exactly what yet. He might decide to go to university first. He is interested in maths and business studies, and he enjoys working with machinery. He also likes the prospect of running his own business. He is currently applying for part time jobs – he has an interview with a shoe shop in the city centre. He has put in a lot of applications, but this is the first interview he has got. Sara (aged 18) is studying A Level Geography, Spanish and Economics. She wants to do Geography at university, but hasn‟t thought about what job this might lead to yet. She recently attended an event run by the Geographical society, sowing different careers – she has thought about pharmacy, town planning, also taking a law conversion course to become a lawyer, because other members of her family are lawyersCHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 26
  29. 29. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 5.3 USEFUL INFORMATION ABOUT CAREERS We asked students about what was most important when deciding on a career, using a list of possibilities to prompt. Most important, especially among boys, is the chance to earn a High salary (41%, rising to 48% among boys). A further 29% wanted a Reasonable salary. This ranks almost level with a high salary among the oldest students (39% vs 41%). 66% mentioned salary at all. One in three place high importance on Career progression and A job that friends and family will respect you for (both 32%). Almost as many stress Making a positive contribution (28%). Older students, and those from BME groups, tend to put the greatest emphasis on these status-related points. Practical aspects such as Being part of a team (29%), Good holidays (25%), Opportunities to travel (22%) and Flexibility (20%) are the other major factors, whilst Working with children is important for 29% of girls. 3a. Which of the following are most important when making decisions about your future career? TOTAL Gender Age % Boys Girls 12-14 14-16 16-18 High salary 41 48 34 40 43 41 Career Progression / chance to make your 32 32 32 21 29 46 mark A job that friends and family will respect you 32 31 32 35 28 32 for Reasonable salary 29 28 31 23 26 39 Being part of a team 29 30 27 27 27 33 Making a positive 28 24 33 20 22 43 contribution Good holidays 25 26 23 26 26 22 Opportunity to travel 22 21 23 22 20 24 Flexibility 20 20 20 18 17 26 Working with children 16 3 29 17 13 19 Benefits e.g. car, 13 17 10 13 11 16 pension medical Working 13 13 14 14 12 13 independently Chance to work 13 13 13 11 12 14 locally Being outdoors 12 17 6 12 12 12 Standard office hours 10 9 12 9 12 10 / regular hours Working with animals 7 5 9 12 7 2 Chance to work 7 7 7 5 7 8 overtime Office environment 5 6 5 5 6 4 Any salary mention 66 70 62 59 64 74 Don’t know / No reply 8 9 6 10 10 3 Base: All aged 12-18 (1581)CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 27
  30. 30. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Other variations:  Children from ethnic minority backgrounds are more likely to consider a High salary important when deciding on a career (48% compared with 39% of white students) and also A job that family and friends will respect you for (41% compared with 29%).  Students from Asian backgrounds are more concerned than average about Making a positive contribution (41%), Benefits (20%), and working in an Office environment (11%).  Those from Black backgrounds place greater importance than average in Being part of a team (39%) and Working with children (25%), but also Working independently (19%).  Emphasis on Working locally and Working with animals is highest among white students (14% and 9% respectively).  Those from rural areas are more likely to place importance on Being outdoors (17% vs 11% for urban children), but also more likely to look for Regular hours (14% vs 9%). 5.3.2 Useful information – groups Discussion in the groups highlighted the extent to which many children approach career choices by looking at the immediate next steps that they might take, rather than focusing on an ultimate working career. When making decisions about their future, the children were keen to know what qualifications and experience they would need to have, in order for them to be considered for certain careers. This helps them to understand how the decisions they make now will affect them in the future, plus they can also determine from the level of qualification needed (e.g. A-Levels, degree), whether or not it is something that they would consider pursuing further. This is particularly important for those who are status driven. Children who are less certain about their future are keen to keep their options open. For them it is more about tailoring their choices, rather than restricting them. Many overlook vocational qualifications in favour of A-Levels, because they believe this route to be more academic and ultimately will give them more flexibility when choosing a career. Other information they are keen to know includes:  Salary – particularly important for boys. What they can hope to earn long term, as well as starting salary. Some agreed that anything around £30K is acceptable, though they would consider less if it was communicated that there were clear channels for fast progression e.g. once fully trained.  Career Progression – including how to get started, and how to make a success of it. Many have a strong desire to better themselves, and earn the respect of their family and friends. They are more likely to consider an opportunity if they know it will lead somewhere.  Typical working day – what the job involves on a daily / weekly basis. Several would like the opportunity to go and spend a day shadowing someone, in order for them to see whether it appeals to their interests.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 28
  31. 31. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011  Opportunity to travel – very important for some, particularly those who are status driven. Travel is often regarded as a characteristic of success – some children are keen to get away from the places where they‟ve grown up, whilst others find it appealing because it suggests some degree of excitement / varied locations etc  Working environment and hours – this is an opportunity for them expand on their existing knowledge. Many fail to appreciate the wide range of different working environments available within a given industry. As a result, some careers are dismissed early on, based upon limited knowledge and common misconceptions. Children are keen to know whether a role will be office based, or if it will involve working outdoors. Similarly are the hours regular office hours or flexible. Since work experience is no longer compulsory and there are limited opportunities to experience these environments for themselves, it is important that careers literature covers these details.  Benefits – car, pension, medical – most recognise these as important, with several referring to recent events in the media. These are good to know, but not necessarily deal breakers.  Making a positive contribution – particularly important for girls. Some are keen to see how certain roles impact on the wider community and beyond. This appeals to those with a high regard for corporate social responsibility.  Autonomy – opinion is divided on this. Some would be happy to be self employed – they like the idea of working for themselves, plus there is a good chance to make money if successful. Others feel this is too risky, and are put off by the prospect – it‟s possible that they have seen local / family businesses fail during the recent economic downturn – although this wasn‟t explored specifically. Qualifications: The main thing I’d want to know is what sort of qualifications I’d need to get that job. I‟d want to know some of the bad points about it though. Everything that is advertised, it‟s always the good things about a job. I‟d like someone that actually does the job and has the experience to actually say what‟s good and what‟s bad. It depends when you want a job, what they require. Whether it’s a job where you get in young and then do it for a long time or whether it’s one that you need a lot of qualifications in order to do it. I think going to university would be just generally a good life experience. Boys aged 13-14, Norfolk Salary: I wouldn’t really consider a job if it was quite low paid. Even if I really liked it. Enough to have a secure house and get food and pay bills, I think that‟s a good salary…about £30k Boy aged 13-14, Norfolk If you have a job that you absolutely hate but it pays you loads of money, then actually I’d prefer to take the job that doesn’t pay quite a lot of money but I‟d really love because you‟ve only got one life and you‟re kind of wasting it. Girl aged 15-16, Norfolk Typical day: What they do, do they enjoy it… you don‟t want a career where you‟re going to work every day and not enjoying it.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 29
  32. 32. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Boy aged 16-18, Chester le Street Working environment: Well I‟m in two minds because I’d really like to work outside… a more difficult outside job rather than being in an office, but then at the same time something like an office job may suit me more because I like maths and stuff like that. Boy aged 13-14, Norfolk Contacts: Some jobs would be really good to do, but I think how on earth do you get to a position where you come to be doing that in the first place. I think sometimes good jobs can be who you know or the sort of education you‟ve been brought up with instead of whether you are specifically talented in that… say you went to a private school and you had a private education… there would be more chance of you getting into a job because of the contacts private schools have. Boy aged 13-14, Norfolk Travel: I’d like to go to different places… I don‟t want to stay at home all the time… I just want to go to different places and try different things. Once you get experience in travel and tourism, you can go anywhere. Girl aged 16-18, Altrincham Benefits: Well a pension is important… if you don‟t get a pension then you‟d have to seriously rethink, depending on the pay whether you could save up enough. Girl aged 15-16, NorfolkCHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 30
  33. 33. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 5.4 SOURCES OF INFORMATION Almost two thirds of children feel that Work experience is one of the most useful ways of finding out about the range of careers choices (63%), rising to 70% among girls. Two in five mention the Internet (41%), with boys (47%) and older students (45%) the most likely to want to turn to this. One in three choose Visits to workplaces (34%), Careers advisers (33%), Personal experience (33%), or Practical hands-on experience (30%). 4a. Here are some ways of finding out about the range of career choices available to you. Which do you think are / would be most useful? TOTAL Gender Age % Boys Girls 12-14 14-16 16-18 Work experience 63 56 70 62 60 67 The internet 41 47 35 34 43 45 Visits to workplaces / 34 26 41 27 33 40 school trips Careers advisors 33 31 36 28 28 44 Personal experience 33 29 37 27 32 40 Practical hands-on 30 28 32 26 29 36 experience Visits from experts 27 26 28 27 27 28 Advice from teachers 21 18 23 22 17 23 Careers fairs / 18 15 21 10 16 27 organised events Leaflets / booklets 17 15 20 17 19 16 Television 15 17 13 16 15 14 programmes Videos 13 18 8 19 12 9 Visits from recent 11 10 12 7 12 14 industry entrants School website 6 8 5 7 5 7 Library resources 5 5 6 8 3 4 Case studies 5 5 5 7 3 6 Don’t know / No reply 6 7 4 7 6 3 Base: All aged 12-18 (1581) Smaller numbers appreciate advice from specific individuals or organised events – Visits from experts (27%), Advice from teachers (21%), also Careers fairs (18%), Leaflets (17%), TV programmes (15%) or Videos (13%). TV and video are more popular among boys, leaflets, events and teacher input among girls. Other variations:  Children from Asian backgrounds place greater emphasis on finding out about careers via Work experience (76%), and are also more likely to value Advice from teachers (33%); those from Black backgrounds stress Practical hands on experience (44%). TV programmes are cited as a useful way of finding out for 24% of mixed race students.  Visits from experts are more attractive to those from rural areas (31%, compared with 26% for urban students). This reflects issues of rural isolation, with far fewer jobs visible to children who live away from major towns and cities.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 31
  34. 34. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 5.4.2 Sources of information – groups In the groups, much of children knew about potential careers and higher education has been formed over several years, often through experiences with family and friends, and via teachers at school. Seeds of information are planted throughout their childhood, and as a result there are some jobs and career destinations that they can easily relate to e.g. Doctors, Plumbers, Teacher, Vet, Lollipop Lady etc. There are many others that they are simply not aware of. The internet is the main source of information for those who have been keen enough to source information for themselves. Some are directed towards resources by teachers, whilst others are slightly more arbitrary in their approach – “I type in the subjects I enjoy (maths and science), and „jobs‟, and see what comes up”. Younger children (13-14) are more likely to search for information relating to specific subjects, rather than „career industries‟. As a result, jobs that are traditionally associated with certain subjects generally favour well (e.g. language interpreter, biologist etc), whilst those that are less clearly defined by this method, or perhaps even span more than one subject are more at risk of being missed altogether e.g. agriculture. For those still looking for inspiration, the online approach typically becomes more organised and structured with age. Increasing knowledge and experience leads many children to search via established websites including:  Royal College of Music  British Psychological Society  Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ)  World Geographical Society website – access talks on different careers. http://www.rgs.org/OurWork/Our+Work.htm – Going Places Report.  UCAS website As children progress through school, they are increasingly likely to consult with a careers teachers or advisor at some stage. Opinion of this is relatively mixed – some are happy with the amount of time and advice they‟ve been given, whilst others feel they haven‟t been made aware of the range of choices available – even those who know what they want to do, still want to be made aware of other options, just in case they change their mind. One girl in Year 11 questioned whether the advisor was working more in the interests of the school, rather than its pupils. She wanted some help towards her application for a scholarship at a local private school, but felt the advisor actively discouraged this and wanted her to stay at the school. Several have been referred to a careers game by their advisor (e.g. Skills for Life / Guidance), but few have found this useful. Others talked about using resources in their school library – some of which are a legacy of the old Connexions career advisory system. These include folders listing careers alphabetically, with a synopsis for each, many of which are helpful in generating ideas. Besides these largely theoretical resources, the children in the groups placed considerable value on the opportunity to experience the practical element of different careers, and the chance to meet with real people. This is consistent with the findings from the online survey.CHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 32
  35. 35. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Despite no longer being part of the curriculum for Year 10 students, work experience is something that most children are keen to take part in, provided that it is well organised and relevant – although this is often not the case. Visits from industry experts and recent graduates are also regarded as a popular alternative to reading material. It appeals to most children, but particularly those who lack the motivation or direction to look up information themselves. In many cases, children find it easy to relate to the speakers, plus they enjoy having the opportunity to ask questions and get honest feedback. Outside of school, many children consider their parents and family to be their greatest influence. With some mixed opinions on formal careers advice, much of they‟ve learnt to rely on is formed from their own experiences at home. Boys in particular are heavily influenced by their parents and other relatives – they have had years of exposure to these careers, and sometimes it can be difficult (or at least an effort), to think beyond this. Despite recognising their important influence, some children also realise that their families can have a potentially negative impact on their choices. Some acknowledge that their parents are keen for them to follow an academic path, whilst others recognise that mothers in particular can be quite overbearing in their opinions, and are reluctant to let their children consider occupations that are dangerous (e.g. police force, army). GROUPS: Summary of useful sources of information: Main resources:  Work experience – although hard to get  Internet – when used effectively  Personal experiences – opinions formed throughout childhood  Practical experience – involving real people / experts  Parents and family – main influence outside of school, but not always impartial  Teachers and careers advisors – opinion varies Other resources:  Leaflets and booklets – more girls, condensed information but rarely picked up in the first instance, can be text heavy / boring  TV programmes – works well for some industries e.g. Forensic Science (CSI)  Videos – more boys, potentially useful but can be patronising, not easy to skip through  Careers games – generate random suggestions, rarely taken seriously  Library – not widely used  Careers Fairs – limited experience, sound boring Work experience: It‟s good, because then you can see what it’s like. We never got the option to do it. Girls aged 15-16, Norfolk I went to a car manufacturers, I was in the office… I was all over… like the shop floor…. It was quite good, but I wouldn’t want to do that for a job. I wanted to do medicine but you have to be 16 to do work experience, so I couldn‟t do any work experience… Boys aged 16-18, Chester le StreetCHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 33
  36. 36. Careers in Agriculture Research – Autumn 2011 Online: I‟ve looked online for military things, RAF stands and musician stuff… I’ve looked into it online and that’s just through my own interest… not really spoken to anyone about it. I searched „RAF‟… that took me to the website and then I looked at all the different things in the musicians area, things like that. Boy aged 13-14, Norfolk Most of it is on the internet nowadays anyway Boy aged 15-16, Altrincham I go on the internet a lot and just research different jobs…just general searching. Look on websites, look at core jobs…look around at what types of jobs and see what careers are best. Girl aged 16-18, Altrincham Visits from experts and recent entrants: I like people telling you about it, like from their experience to than just reading. We had people who came into the sports hall… you just had to walk round and pick up leaflets. The army and…RAF, police. Boys aged 16-18, Chester le Street Speakers in school tell you what you can do. We had someone in their second year at uni telling us about the forensic psychology she does there. She was telling us about the course. Girl aged 16-18, Altrincham We had the Head of British Airways cabin crew for the UK, he came in to speak to us. He told us what first class cabins are like, and all the packages you get given… everything about how the prices are. How it varies from economy. They have their own college so if I wanted to study more in travel and tourism I could live there. They‟d pay for my accommodation if I worked on their airline. I can go to college and study with them… Girl aged 16-18, Altrincham Parents: I‟ve been influenced by my dad and granddad because they do both the same job and I wanted to do that job virtually all my life. A fire-fighter. Boy aged 13-14, Norfolk I remember in year 9 saying I want to take GCSEs in art, music and drama… my mum says take a step back, you need to do something academic as well. I ended up doing art, graphics and history… and then for A level I thought I wanted to do all the same again, but now I‟m changing my mind onto something completely different. Girl aged 15-16, Norfolk Yeah. I think they can be a bit of a negative influence. Like my mum wouldn’t want me to go into anything that would put me in any danger, like the military or a policeman or anything like that. Boy aged 13-14, Norfolk Teachers and Careers Advisors: I haven‟t really thought about what I want to do when I‟m older but I‟m thinking of going to see a careers adviser. I like science and maths and I’m quite good at English but I don‟t know exactly what I want to do. Boy aged 13-14, NorfolkCHILDWISE – Careers In Agriculture – Research Report – Students 34

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