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Okiror and Otabong

Journal of Dynamics in Agricultural Research

Available online at

Vol.2(2), pp.12-20, May  2015

Article ID: jdar/15/015

Copyright © 2015


Original Research Paper

Factors influencing career choice among undergraduate Students in an African university context: The Case of Agriculture Students at Makerere University, Uganda

Okiror John James1* and Otabong Denis2

Department of Extension and Innovation Studies, Makerere University, Uganda.

*Corresponding author.

Received 16 April, 2015; Accepted 28 April, 2015.


This paper discusses factors influencing choice of agricultural careers among undergraduate students in an African University context with particular reference to experiences of students in the School of Agricultural Sciences at Makerere University. The specific objectives are to: establish the factors which influence career choice among BSc in Agriculture; determine students’ perceptions towards farming as a career after university; and describe the support services available to students at the university. Data were collected from 116 students in the School of Agricultural Sciences using a structured questionnaire and analysed for descriptive statistics like frequencies and percentages using SPSS version 16 computer software. Findings showed that students relied on their personal experiences and interests (30.2%) and pressure from their parents (15.5%) while making choices. Contrary to extant literature, 73% of students said they were willing to return to the land as farmers while 27.2% would prefer to seek for employment. It is commended that the university should provide career guidance services to help students make informed career choices and government should give follow-up support to those agriculture graduates who are willing to return to farming.

Keywords: Agriculture, undergraduates, career choice.