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Perceptions of forestry students change through years of study
Date:5/30/2010

munication. The authors suggest that this is a positive finding, as previous academic work has pointed out the need for improved communication skills for forestry graduates and professionals.

While the study did not find much variation on items related to experience, the importance of excelling academically decreased across study years, while the importance of having a good social life increased across study years. The authors suggest that this may signal dissatisfaction or de-motivation linked to a perception that academic achievement is not appropriately awarded.

Students in their finals years showed a greater diversity in their preferred areas of work, and showed an increasing support for consultancy. This may have been influenced by their growing awareness of their expertise, as well as interaction with their professors who perform consultancy work.

While the majority of students at the beginning of their studies prefer to continue for master programs at the same university, by their later years they equally preferred either the same university, a different university, or studying abroad. While this may represent the natural development of expanding expertise, the authors suggest it could also reflect dissatisfaction with their studies, and a progressive loss of interest in continuing their studies at the same university.

The findings from this study offer new insights into the perceptions of forestry education and employment, putting efforts for reform curricula on stronger footing. While areas and competencies that students put less emphasis on should not be dropped from the curriculum, their perceptions offer a perspective of the motivation, engagement, and effort that students gain and experience in their educational careers.


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Contact: Sara Uttech
suttech@sciencesocieties.org
608-268-4948
American Society of Agronomy
Source:Eurekalert

Page: 1 2

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