Perceived organisational support and university students’ career exploration: the mediation role of career adaptability

Yin Ma*, Dawn Bennett, Shih Chih Chen

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    9 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    This study examined the extent to which perceived organisational support (POS) predicts career exploration via the mediation effect of career adaptability. Grounded in career construction theory, the study employed an online survey with 611 Chinese undergraduate students. The survey employed POS, career adaptability and career-related exploration scales. Multi-group comparisons explored gender, discipline and place of origin (rural or urban). Although gender and major were moderating variables, there was no significant difference among rural and urban subgroups. There was a direct relationship between POS and career-related exploration via the mediation effect of career adaptability. Male students had higher and statistically significant path coefficients when it came to the relationship between POS and career-related exploration. The effects of POS on career adaptability and career-related exploration differed according to discipline. Humanities and social sciences (HASS) students reported significantly less organisational support than those in science and engineering. POS had negligible influence on career-related exploration among HASS students. The results suggest that assessing students’ POS is an important preliminary step within career development learning. Recommendations include early assessment and discussion of students’ POS and incorporating the concern, control, curiosity and confidence dimensions of career adaptability into career-related interventions.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)903-919
    Number of pages17
    JournalHigher Education Research and Development
    Volume42
    Issue number4
    Early online date30 Aug 2022
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 30 Aug 2022

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