Academic journal article Asian Social Science

Educational Strategy as a Form of Economic Behaviour

Academic journal article Asian Social Science

Educational Strategy as a Form of Economic Behaviour

Article excerpt

Abstract

The article analyzes educational strategies of the graduates who are planning to enter a master programme after completion of their bachelor programme. The research sets the goals to establish the main reasons for getting education in a master programme and factors defining their readiness to pay for this education. The research was carried out on the basis of Astrakhan State University (the Russian Federation). The research suggests a simple econometric model of component analysis. The result shows that most of the students consider a master programme to be a feasible educational trajectory, however only a minor part of them are ready to study on a commercial basis. Formation of a particular educational strategy is directly connected with the expected future income. It is characteristic that those bachelor degree graduates who are career-oriented display willingness to pay for their education, and those who see their professional future in enhancement their knowledge and being engaged in some research work expect to continue their education at the expense of the state. The results of the research confirm the existence of the investment, signaling and consumer functions of education that influence the preferences of the students and the choice of their further educational strategy.

Keywords: economics of education, educational strategy, human capital, master programme, preferences

1. Introduction

The global trend of the higher education development today is the dissemination of the Anglo-Saxon model of two-level training of specialists in different spheres of knowledge and professional activity. The first level of education in this model corresponds to acquisition of a bachelor degree, and the second level - a master degree. The most convincing evidences of dissemination of the two-level system are two key integration processes: the Bologna declaration signed in 1999 and the Lisbon Strategy 2000. The Bologna declaration had the main purpose of creating an integrated higher education area in Europe by means of introduction of standardized multilevel system of academic degrees for all the European countries. The Lisbon strategy reflected the Europe's aspiration to have a dynamically developing knowledge-based economy that would be competitive at the global level. Specialists consider that in the current system dynamics the key role is played by the reforms connected specifically with the transition to the multilevel system of degrees. (Maassen & Stensaker, 2011). In the countries adopted the two-level training system, bachelors are seen as the specialists that compose the bulk of the employees with the higher education in all the spheres of economy. Masters are primarily engaged in research and design engineering, teaching in higher education establishments which in most countries presupposes carrying out some scientific research. We should also note that actually three academic degrees are accepted: bachelor, master and doctor. The latter is awarded for the achievements in science.

The statistics shows that 58% of young adults in OECD countries will enter tertiary-type A (Note 1) programmes during their lifetime; the proportion of students entering tertiary-type B (Note 2) programmes is generally smaller, mainly because these programmes are less developed in most OECD countries. An average of 18% of today's young adults (20% of women and 17% of men) will enter tertiary-type B (shorter and largely vocational) programmes over their lifetime (Education at a Glance, 2014). The data on the Russian Federation display that in 2012 the share of students willing to take a master degree course was more than 35% which is more than the average share in OECD countries (Figure 1).

The diagram shows that on average across all OECD countries with comparable data, the proportion of young adults who entered tertiary type A programmes increased by 10 percentage points between 2000 and 2012, and by almost 20 percentage points between 1995 and 2012. …

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