This study was conducted to assess the knowledge and perceptions of metropolitan and non-metropolitan Year 10 students in the Australian state of Victoria, concerning careers in agricultural and environmental fields. A survey of 550 Year 10 students was undertaken to determine factors involved in decision making: about careers by high school students, the knowledge of such students about careers available in agricultural science; and whether the perceptions of students about agriculture affect decisions to undertake university study in agriculture and related fields. The study showed that a greater number of non-metropolitan students had considered a career in agriculture than metropolitan students. It was also found that the most important influence on student knowledge about agricultural careers came from parents, school, and the media; that overall student knowledge of the various careers available to graduates of agricultural science was limited, and, where such knowledge existed, it was biased by misconceptions of the role and activities of agricultural scientists. Furthermore, students were interested in high paying careers, yet did not consider that agriculture offered these.


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