Studies in Learning, Evaluation, Innovation and Development > Vol. 5, No. 3 (2008)

The influence of role models on the career aspirations of prospective tertiary students: A regional case study

Steven Pace, Central Queensland University


In recent years, many Australian universities have had to contend with the challenge of declining student enrolments, often attributed to the nationís growing economy and tight labour market. Career role models can help universities to cultivate interest in specific disciplines and ultimately increase course enrolments in those fields, but only if they satisfy certain criteria. When potential students are presented with an outstanding role model from a relevant field whose accomplishments are perceived to be attainable, they feel positively about the comparison and can gain inspiration and motivation. This article presents a case study of the impact that two outstanding role models had on the career aspirations of prospective digital media students at an Australian regional university.

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