Career Decision-making Self-Efficacy of Higher Education Students in Tanzania: Does Age, Gender, and Year of Study Matter?

Jaquiline Amani


This article presents the findings of study that deployed a cross-sectional survey design to examine a perceived self-efficacy in career decision-making of undergraduate students in Tanzania. Specifically, the study examined the extent to which age, gender, and year of study influence self-efficacy in career decision-making among students in higher education institutions of Tanzania. The study used a sample of 204 business and engineering undergraduate students randomly drawn from two purposively selected public higher education institutions the University of Dar es Salaam and the University of Dodoma. The results showed that the majority of respondents had high career decision-making self-efficacy in terms of goal selection, occupational information, problem-solving, planning, and self-appraisal. Moreover, with the exception of age, the t-test results revealed significant differences in career self-efficacy between female and male students as well as between first and final year students. The results contribute to a better understanding of the development of career decision-making self-efficacy in relation to the students’ gender, age, and year of study in sub-Saharan Africa.


Key words: Perceived career self-efficacy, university students, age, gender, year of study, Tanzania

Full Text:



Anderson, S. L., & Betz, N. E. (2001). Sources of social self-efficacy expectations: their Assessment. Journal of Vocational Behaviour, 58, 98-117.

Bandura, A. (1977). Self-efficacy: Toward a unifying theory of behavioural change. Psychological Review, 84, 191-215.

Bandura, A. (1986). Social foundations of thought and action. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Bandura, A. (1997). Self-efficacy: The exercise of control. New York: W. H. Freeman.

Betz, N. E., & Hackett, G. (1981).The relationship of career-related self-efficacy expectations perceived career options in college women and men. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 28, 399 - 410.

Betz, N. E., & Luzzo, D. A. (1996). Career assessment and the career decision-making self-efficacy scale. Journal of Career Assessment, 4, 413-428.

Betz, N., & Hackett, G. (2006). Career self-efficacy: Back to the future. Journal of Career Assessment, 14, 3-11.

Betz, N.E., & Taylor, K. M. (2012).Career decision self-efficacy scale and short form sampler set: Manual, instrument and scoring guide. United States: Mind Garden Inc. Retrieved from

Betz, N.E., Klein, K, & Taylor, K.M. (1996). Evaluation of a short form of the career decision making self-efficacy scale. Journal of Career Assessment, 4, 47-57.

Bozgeyikli, H., Eroglu, S. E, & Hamurcu, H. (2009). Career decision making self-efficacy, career maturity and socioeconomic status with Turkish Youth. Georgian Electronic Scientific Journal: Education Science and Psychology, 1 (14) 15-24.

Bullock-Yowell, E., Andrews, L., & Buzzetta, M. E. (2011). Explaining career decision making self-efficacy: Personality, cognitions, and cultural mistrust. The Career Development Quarterly, 59, 400-411.

Burger, C., Reisberg, R., Bailey, M., Hamann, J., Raelin, J., & Whitman, D. (2010). The effect of gender on support and self-efficacy in undergraduate engineering programs.Proceedings of the 2010 ASEE Annual Conference. Available:

Choi, B. Y., Park, H., Yang, E., Lee, S. K., Lee, Y., & Lee, S. M. (2012). Understanding career decision self-efficacy: A meta-analytic approach. Journal of Career Development, 39(5), 443–460.

Chung, Y.B. (2002). Career decision making self-efficacy and career commitment: Gender and ethnic differences among college students. Journal of Career Development, 24(4).

Correll, J. S. (2001). Gender and the career choice process: The role of biased self‐assessments. American Journal of Sociology, 106 (6), 1691-1730.

Gushue, G. V., Scanlan, K. R. L., Pantzer, K. M., & Clarke, C. P. (2006). The relationship of career decision-making self-efficacy, vocational identity, and career exploration behavior in African American high school students. Journal of Career Development, 33, 19-28.

Hartung, P. J., Porfeli, E. J., & Vondracek, F. W. (2005). Child vocational development: A review and reconsideration. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 66, 385-419.

Idd, H. (2007). Impact of academic performance and perceived self- efficacy on career choice among secondary school students in Dar es Salaam. (Unpublished M.A.(ASP) dissertation). University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam.

Israel, G. D. (1992). Sampling the evidence of extension program impact. Program Evaluation and Organizational Development, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida.PEOD-5.October. Retrieved from

Kihwele, J.E. (2014). Students’ perception of science subjects and their attitude in Secondary schools. Journal of Educational Research, 1 (1), 1-8.

Kostko. (n.d). Career decision making self-efficacy among high school students in selected public and private schools in Bangkok, Thailand. Retrieved from

Lent, R. W., Hackett, G., & Brown, S. D. (1994). Towards a unified social cognitive theory of career, academic interest, choice and performance. Journal of Vocational Behaviour,45, 79-122.

Leong, F. T. L., & Barak, A. (Eds.) (2001). Contemporary models in vocational psychology.Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. Associates.

Luzzo, D. A. (1993). Reliability and validity testing of the Career Decision-Making Self-Efficacy scale. Measurement and Evaluation in Counseling and Development, 26, 137-142.

Luzzo, D. A. (1994). Assessing the value of social-cognitive constructs in career development. Paper presented at the Annual Convention of the American Psychological Association, Los Angeles, CA. August.

Mbilinyi, C. (2012). Determinants of career decision making among secondary school students in Tanzania. (Unpublished MA.ASP dissertation). University of Dar es Salaam, Dar es Salaam.

Mutekwe, E., Modiba, M., & Maphosa, C. (2011). Factors affecting female students’ career choices and aspirations: A Zimbabwean example. Journal of Social Science, 29 (2).133-141.

Nasta, K. A. (2007). Influence of career self-efficacy beliefs on career exploration behaviour. (Unpublished master’s dissertation). The State University of New York at New Paltz. Retrieved from

Nesdale, D., & Printer, K. (2000). Self-efficacy and job-seeking activities in unemployed ethnic youth. Journal of Social Psychology, 140, 608-614.

Nicolao, J.S. (2014). The effects of gender stereotyping on career choice among secondary school students in Dar es Salaam. (Unpublished master’s dissertation). Open University of Tanzania, Dar es Salaam.

Niles, S. G., & Sowa, C. J. (1992). Mapping the nomological network of career self-efficacy. Career Development Quarterly, 41, 13-22.

Nilsson, J. E., Schmidt, C. K., & Meek, W. D. (2002). Reliability generalization: An examination of the Career Decision-Making Self-Efficacy Scale. Educational and Psychological Measurement, 62, 647–658.

Prideaux, L. & Creed, P. A. (2001). Career maturity, career decision-making self-efficacy and career indecision: A review of the accrued evidence. Australian Journal of Career Development. 10(3), 7-12.

Purvis, C.R.C. (1987). The effects of gender-role stereotyping and the career aspirations and expectations of pre-adolescent children of high intellectual ability. (Unpublished master’s dissertation). University of Lethbridge, Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada.

Seligman, L. (1994). Developmental career counseling and assessment. London: Sage.

Stacy, M. E.W. (2003). Influences of selected demographic variables on the career decision making self-efficacy of college seniors.(Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation), Northwestern State University. Retrieved from

Sterrett, E. A. (1998). Use of a job club to increase self-efficacy: a case study of return to work. Journal of Employment Counseling, 35, 69-78.

Taylor, K. M., & Betz. N. E. (1983). Applications of self-efficacy theory to the understanding and treatment of career indecision. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 22, 63-81. (Original CDMSE).

VanRyn, M., & Vinokur, A. (1992). How did it work? An examination of the mechanisms through which an intervention for the unemployed promoted job search behavior. American Journal of Community Psychology, 20, 577-597.


  • There are currently no refbacks.