Understanding self in the transition process from higher education to work

Thesis Type: Postgraduate

Institution Of The Thesis: Orta Doğu Teknik Üniversitesi, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Department of Sociology, Turkey

Approval Date: 2018




Transition from higher education to work is a critical period in the lives of individuals. The period becomes even more critical when it takes place in conditions of uncertainty and insecurity, and an education system that is expanding constantly. In these circumstances young people are assigned the responsibility to make their way into the labour market, a process that is more than a period of job applications, but also a process of self-formation. Based on in-depth interviews with young male and female social science and engineering graduates, this study aims to understand how self is constructed in in the case of perceptions and experiences regarding higher education to work transition in Turkey. Based on a cross-section of a segment of youth in Turkey the study asks questions such as: How do young people perceive and experience transition to work? What is the relevance of degrees for the labour market? How do young people respond to the responsibility of self-investing they are assigned? These are the basic questions this study aims to answer. The study reveals that while all young people have common perceptions with regarding to the structural conditions and their position within them, there are variations in terms of responses based on field of study and gender. There is recognition of structural factors, yet young people tend to develop individualised responses in the process of higher education to work transition. individualisation characterises higher education to work transition experiences of young people in 2010s Turkey.