Sociodemographics, Beliefs, and Attitudes as Determinants of College Students' Career Aspirations

Darrick Tovar-Murray*, Miranda M. Parries, Jessica Gutheil, Randall Carpenter

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


We sought to determine the extent to which sociodemographic characteristics indirectly influence the relationships among self-efficacy beliefs, feminist attitudes, and career aspiration domains. A group of college students (N = 1,129; 37% racial minorities) from an urban midwestern university participated in the study. Two moderation analyses were conducted and yielded interaction effects of Self-Efficacy Beliefs × Gender on leadership aspiration (p =.01) and Self-Efficacy Beliefs × Sexual Orientation on leadership aspiration (p =.050). Results indicated that a stronger endorsement of self-efficacy beliefs led both male and lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer, intersex, and questioning (LGBQIQ) students to seek out leadership positions within their chosen career field. The effect of feminist attitudes on achievement aspiration was stronger for LGBQIQ students than for heterosexual students (p =.044). On the basis of these results, we present several recommendations to aid career counselors in their work with college students to promote an increase in self-efficacy and to increase career aspirations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)114-129
Number of pages16
JournalCareer Development Quarterly
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 2021


  • career aspirations
  • college students
  • feminist attitudes
  • self-efficacy beliefs
  • sociodemographics

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Psychology
  • General Psychology
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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