Thesis: Decision Making and Students

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Chapter I
INTRODUCTION

Background of the Study
Decision-making entails making choices, solving problems, and selecting the best alternatives (Bongat, 2011). Decision-making is distinctly a human activity. The process of decision making is one of the most complex mechanisms of human thinking, as various factors and courses of action intervene in it, with different results. Nothing makes a person more productive than the last minute.

A decision is a choice made between alternative courses of action in a situation of uncertainty (Business Dictionary, 2011). Each individual must realize that it is going to be necessary to make a decision. For every incoming college students, deciding what best course to take can be a difficult decision. There are some students who arrive on campus and know exactly their course to take and career ambitions, but the majority of the students don’t know what course to take, or have a career goal but don’t know which course will get them there. And in fact, due to the large number of courses available to students, most of them find themselves switching courses during college.

Some first year students know exactly what they want to major in and what career they want to pursue after graduation. At the other extreme, some freshmen enter college without having made any decision about either a major or a career. Between the two extremes are most students, who have tentative or at best provisional ideas about possible majors and subsequent careers. Decision for choosing one major above another are sometimes made for superficial yet practical, short term reasons, such as which courses are less difficult and which departments have professors who give better grades (Fogg et. al., 2004).

As stated in the dissertation of Azodo (2009), students all over the world are usually faced with the task of career decision making. Choosing a career is one of the most important life decisions because of its obvious impact on a future life pattern of the individual. Career choice is a complicated process, thus it is expected that young people should seek all the information and advice available by sharing their thoughts and objectives with parents, educators, vocational experts and friends.

During the senior year in high school, students are faced with the dilemma on what they want to do right after graduation: pursue college education, learn a trade by enrolling in technical-vocational program, or work immediately. Whatever career decision the high school seniors eventually make, it is important to determine the career decision making process they undergo. It is also important to know which factors they consider or disregard in their career decisions (Espero, 2008)

Students may decide on a course based on a personal interest in a specific discipline or may base on considering other people's opinion and other environmental aspects. Other students may already know that they have an interest in medicine, law, business, journalism, arts (art/music/theater), psychology, government, etc (Bongat, 2011).

As stated in the dissertation of Issa and Nwalo (2004), an individual’s need is one of the determining factors in career decision. Other factors include important people in their lives, parent, admired works, working experiences and peer influence. The occupation makes possible the playing of a role appropriate to the self-concepts since every occupation requires a characteristic pattern of abilities, interests and personality traits with tolerance wide enough to allow a variety of occupations for each individual and a variety of individuals in each occupation. The selection of an occupation constitutes an implementation of the self-concept construct, requiring a person to recognize himself as a distinctive individual and to be aware of the similarities between himself and others. Thus, knowledge of self is crucial in making an adequate and wise decision; suggesting that career decision is...
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