FSD3553 Finnish University Graduates of Year 2015: Career and Employment Survey 2020

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Authors

  • Aarresaari network of the Academic Career Services in Finland

Keywords

appointment to job, career development, educational certificates, employment, employment opportunities, graduates, higher education institutions, job satisfaction, tertiary education (first stage)

Abstract

The survey charted the career and employment situation of individuals who had graduated from Finnish universities with a lower (BA/BSc or equivalent) or higher (MA/MSc or equivalent) degree in 2015. The survey was conducted five years after graduation. Main themes of the survey included the respondents' satisfaction with their degree, career path stages, current employment situation, the quality of employment, and the importance of university education for employment.

The first part investigated the respondents' education and work history. They were asked whether they had, after graduation, participated in job-related training, career guidance or any additional professional qualification or higher education studies. The respondents were asked whether they agreed or disagreed with a set of attitudinal statements regarding their degree and its usefulness for employment. Further questions covered how many employers the respondents had had, whether the respondents had been entrepreneurs, self-employed or freelancers, and whether they had been outside the labour market because of family leave or unemployment.

The respondents' satisfaction with their career thus far was charted, along with current occupational status, type of employer, and type of current work tasks. The respondents were also asked whether their current job required an academic degree, whether the job was commensurate with their academic qualifications, and if not, why they had accepted the job. The extent to which the respondents had been able to utilize the knowledge and skills gained during their university studies was also examined, and monthly gross income at the time of the survey was charted.

Next, the respondents were asked which factors had had an impact on their employment after graduation (e.g. major/minor subjects, internship, work experience, personal networks). Questions also covered how important certain skills and know-how were in the respondents' current job and how well their studies had developed these skills (e.g. theoretical or practical knowledge of their field, problem solving, managerial skills, negotiation skills, project management, and communication in English). The 2020 survey also included questions about the impact the COVID-19 pandemic had had on the respondents' employment situation.

Background variables included the respondent's gender, age at the time of graduation, NUTS3 region of residence, the university attended, and information on the degree (field of study, number of credits required for the degree, degree level).

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