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National Research Studies

Building on our earlier research, Student Research Foundation and its partners will be conducting three significant studies this year to gain new insights into students’ attitudes and experiences impacting their future educational plans and career choices and to better understand diverse student populations.

  • Student readiness for the 21st century workplace (i.e., 21st century skills, global citizenship, and digital citizenship)
  • The STEM interest lifecycle, including the power of micro-messaging on aspirations
  • CTE’s multifaceted benefits for increasing interest in skilled technical occupations and the trades

The Career & Technical Education Career Pathways Study

As the U.S. economy continues gaining steam, the supply of “middle-skill” workers will be crucial for sustaining that momentum. Career and Technical Education (CTE) can help our nation meet this challenge.

The rapid pace of technological advancements has driven the need for middle-skills jobs, those that require more than a high school diploma but less than a four-year degree, accounting for more than half of the U.S. labor market. It has also evolved the world of work into one where it will be essential for workers to get training and develop new skills throughout their careers.

Through industry collaborations and hands-on experiential learning, CTE programs are preparing a pipeline of workers that possess the technical competencies and workplace skills to succeed in the most in-demand areas, propelling students to postsecondary education and empowering them to be self-motivated learners able to adapt to change.

The Career and Technical Education Career Pathways study encourages students to self-assess their:

  • progress along a CTE career pathway.
  • success in deriving maximum benefit from CTE.
  • openness to life-long learning.
  • readiness to make decisions about post-secondary education and training

If you’d just like to view/download the entire study, click here!

If you’re a teacher looking to request paper surveys, click here!

The Career Pathways and 21st Century Skills Career Pathway Study

Educators are preparing the students of today for the workplace of tomorrow. The challenge they face is great because it will differ dramatically from the past. For today’s students to be college and career ready, their learning must go beyond mastery of core subjects and include 21st century knowledge and skills like critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and digital literacy.

The Career Pathways and 21st Century Skills study will assess student preparation for the new global economy, with a focus on the critical competencies necessary for success.

The study will explore:

  • Students’ global awareness and understanding of global citizenship
  • Digital skills and political/social engagement
  • Student buy-in to the value of the 4Cs

If you’d just like to view/download the entire study, click here!

If you’re a teacher looking to request paper surveys, click here!

The STEM Career Pathways Study

Whether the United States has a shortage of STEM workers is a long-standing, highly contested policy issue that has become increasingly difficult to assess. In our dynamic 21st Century economy, STEM knowledge and skills are being used in many more occupations than those traditionally thought of as science and engineering, a trend that will only continue to grow as occupational tasks and occupations themselves are rapidly changing.

One thing is certain though. To remain competitive, our nation needs flexible STEM-capable workers at every education level. To meet this need requires that students receive a strong educational foundation in primary and secondary school before following their pathways to postsecondary education and careers.

The STEM Career Pathways Study will explore:

  • the lifecycle of STEM interest from the perspective of students.
  • the impact of positive and negative micro-messaging on students’ STEM engagement.
  • the nuanced nature of STEM confidence.

If you’d just like to view/download the entire study, click here!

If you’re a teacher looking to request paper surveys, click here!