What problems do university students expect to face and how to overcome them?

Part 1 What problems do XXX University students expect to face in their future professional careers and what are their plans to overcome them?

On the basis of the requirements from the question, we know that we should conduct a research to find out XXX University students opinions on the problems rising from their future professional careers and the methods to overcome them. Because of this requirement, we have used two kinds of research methods such as questionnaires means and interview means to do this research. In the following well justify the reasons for our choice and the implementation means and our analysis on the research results.

Reasons for choosing the research methods

I. Questionnaires and its function

Wright (2005) defined the questionnaire methods as the most cost effective means compared with other measures, which is useful for research involving many people. It has many advantages to help us implement out research.

To begin with, questionnaires are relatively easy for us to analyze (Wright 2005). For example, in this research we have handed out some questionnaires to the XXX University students to check their opinions on these problems faced by their future careers and the resolutions. As these questions in questionnaires are designed almost identically, we only need to analyze the results in the questionnaires to find out students opinions and summarize these results.

Secondly, questionnaire means is very time effective. Downs and Adrian (2004) reminded us that recipients and researchers can master their own time freely and manage their own timeline to finish or collect these questionnaires. For us to find out XXX University students opinions on the topic, we can work more flexibly to hand out questionnaires to them and tell them they can give the finished questionnaires before the due day without waiting there for their finishing.

Thirdly, questionnaire method is one of the widely used research methods, which is familiar to many people (McNabb 2008). It may be more comfortable and free for XXX University students to show their ideas or opinions on their worry of their future professional careers and offer some resolutions since most of them may have some experience to complete questionnaires before.

Fourthly, questionnaire means can reduce bias. As Wright (2005) mentioned, through questionnaire means, questions are presented in a uniform manner without middle man bias. That is to say, using this means, we may get more objective answer from XXX University students own ideas and opinions without too much influence from our, the researchers’ opinions. Because there are seldom clues from verbal or body language to impact on these XXX University students, they can show their own opinions freely which may help us get many certain and objective answers.

Moreover, questionnaire means is less intrusive than some of other research methods as well (Mitchell & Jolley 2010). When we handing out questionnaires to XXX University students they can choose their own leisure time to finish the questionnaires without being bothered too much compared with other research methods, which may be helpful for us to win their cooperation when we conducting other research in the future.

II Interviews and its function

In addition to the useful questionnaire means, another research chosen by us is the interview means, or rather the face to face interview. The reasons for the choosing are as below.

Primarily speaking, face to face interview is an effective research means for us because it is a kind of synchronous communication in time and place (Wengraf 2001). Compared to other research means, face to face interview can make full use of the social cues, which include voice information, intonation information, and body language information and so on from interviewees. In another word, face to face interview means may be useful for us to get more certain and correct meanings and answers from XXX University students on the topic question without some misunderstandings because the voice, intonation, body language cues from the interviewees can add the correctness of our understanding of the answers given by these XXX University students interviewed by us.

Secondly, Opdenakker and Raymond (2006) also hold the idea that the advantage of the synchronous communication makes the answers from interviewees more objective and spontaneous without too much bothering from some extended reflection. That is to say, the interviewed XXX University students can give us the initial reflections to the research questions from their own idea without influences by others, which may make our research more objective and persuasive.

Thirdly, face to face communication is very flexible and easily controlled by interviewers (Szwarc 2005). Because the research time for us is limited, it is important for the interviewer to control the interview time. And the face to face interview means has such advantage. For example, we can give some clues to interviewees to direct to understand and answer our research questions more correctly. And moreover, we can also terminate the interview flexible. Szwarc (2005) advised that one good choice to terminate the face to face interview for us is to show our thanks to the interviewed XXX University students for their cooperation and asking for their advices to better implement our research in the future.

By and large the two research methods such as questionnaire means and face to face interview means are suitable for this research and the reason for this choice is as the above description.

Methods implementation

To better achievement the expected consequences of this research, in another word to collect more useful and effective information from the XXX University students on their opinions on problems faced by their future professional careers and resolutions, we have implemented this research as below.

I. Questionnaire implementation

According to the specialty of this research topic, the questionnaires are designed to include more open ended questions and a few of closed questions (e.g. Chart 1.0) (Royse 2008). And furthermore, we handed out nearly 15 pieces of questionnaires to the XXX University students in this college who are mostly familiar with us, which assist our research to conduct smoothly. And we give these recipients of the questionnaires about 3 days to finish the questionnaires and then we collected these finished questionnaires to summarize and analyze the results, which will be shown in the following part.

Chart 1.0 Questionnaire sampling questions

Sample of open ended question

Question 1. What do you predict the problems will be faced in your future professional career?

Question 2. What solutions will adopt to solve these problems in your future careers?

Sample of close ended question

Question 1. What will be your future career?

  1. Working in the public sector such as teachers and other kind of jobs
  2. Engaging in the business
  3. Become the professional
  4. Others and please give your answer

II. Interview

In terms of face to face interview, we chose 10 XXX University students to interview during three days period. To better get and obtain the results, we used tape recorder to record the interviews and some writing notes. The reason why we use tape to record and writing notes the interviews is due to its correctness and accuracy. The first advantage is that it can help us to double check whether the research questions are fully answerers. Secondly, if the tape recorder is out of function, we have the writing note to refer to. (Rubin& Babbie 2011)

Research results

Thanks for the cooperation of this interviewee from XXX University of our college, we get the following information related to the topic of this research.

To begin with, most students choose to engage in careers related with business due to their major in college is related to the business. And there are three major concerns of them towards problems may be encountered in their future professional careers. The first one is the relationship maintenance with colleagues, bosses and other people in work. As one Chinese girl said according to her knowledge including she sees and hears, the relationship in the working environment is very subtle that there a sting of links among different people. As a fresh man in the working environment, especially in the complicated business environment who is lack of real word experience, it is difficult for her to properly manage the relationship let alone maintain it well.

Some other XXX University students also have such kind of worry as the Chinese girl. But they developed a hot argument and finally offered some solutions to this problem. The first suggestion is to do a good preparation from the college life. That is to say to try our best to engage in more social activities such as doing some part time jobs to obtain working experience especially to gain the experience in how to get along well with people. The second advice is to ask advice from these experienced people such as our parents, bigger siblings, teachers and other people have rich experience in workplace. The last suggestion from XXX University students is to practice the relationship establishing and maintaining in the college place. Just as many people said the college is a small society, if we can establish and maintain good relationship with our classmates, schoolmates or even teachers, it may help us to gain more knowledge and experiences to enable us to act more freely in our future careers.

The second concern of XXX University students towards the problem in the future professional career is the practical knowledge and career development for them. As one Malay Chinese student mentioned in the college we just learn some knowledge from our textbook. For example, gaining good marks in the human resource management course doesnt mean we can be a good human resource manager in our future career. That is to say what we learn in our college may not be so useful and helpful for our future career.

As this worry shown by many XXX University students towards their future careers, there is also a hot discussion on this and students also give some recommendations to ease this worry. The first recommendation is to gain more working experience and knowledge from the college life as well. Although the knowledge from the college textbooks may not enough to facilitate our future career, we can manage our study more positively and actively. the part time working experience, such as a part time sale people, part time office assistant and so on can offer us with a great deal of good knowledge and many helpful experiences for our future career. And furthermore, refers to the future career development aspect, students suggested to attend some on the job training programs which are offered by companies. And besides the on the job training programs, it is also important for students in the future career to learn as much as possible themselves positively. For instance, there are many training center offering professional training programs for these careerists, which are good choice for students to choose to enhance their competitiveness in their future careers.

Besides most peoples choice, some XXX University student said they wanted to become a teacher in the future to teach the business course. In terms of this choice, some students said although they were keen on becoming a teacher, they were just business student who may have good knowledge in business field but lacking in the knowledge of teaching. Based on this worry, some students also offered their own solution. The widely suggested one is to gain more real life experience as possible. That is to say, we can apply some part time jobs as teachers in some schools or training center to accumulate teaching experience and knowledge which would be useful and helpful for the future if we become teachers.

Reference

Downs, C. W. & Adrian, A. D. 2004, Assessing Organizational Communication: Strategic Communication Audits, Guilford Press, New York,

McNabb, D.E. 2008, Research Methods in Public Administration and Nonprofit Management, 2nd edn, New York,

Mitchell, M. L. & Jolley, J. M. 2010, Research Design Explained, 7th edn, Cengage Learning, Canada,

Grit, R. & Sijde, N.V. D. 2009, Managing Your Competencies: Personal Development Plan, Taylor & Francis,
Opdenakker & Raymond 2006, Advantages and Disadvantages of Four Interview Techniques in Qualitative Research, Qualitative Social Research, Vol. 7, No. 4,

Royse, D.D. 2008, Research Methods in Social Work, 5th edn, Thomson, Belmont,

Rubin, A. & Babbie, E. R. 2011, Research Methods for Social Work, Cengage Learning, USA,

Szwarc, P. 2005, Researching Customer Satisfaction & Loyalty: How to Find Out What People, Kogan Page, London,
Wengraf, T 2001, Qualitative Research Interviewing, Sage, London,

Wright, K.B. 2005, Researching Internet‐Based Populations: Advantages and Disadvantages of Online Survey Research, Journal of Computer,

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