“The joy of discovery is certainly the liveliest that the mind of man can ever feel”

- Claude Bernard -

Gymnasium Dropouts in Iceland

The study was carried out in Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland, in 1976. It revealed that dropouts had more negative attitudes toward schooling than the graduates had.

The dropouts also did not find schooling as useful nor their school experience as pleasant as did the graduates.

Icelandic Adolescents Career Choices (1983) and follow up in 1993 and 2019

This was a study of career choices of students in the 9th grade of the Icelandic Basic School (1 - 9th grade of primary school).

   The aim of the of the study was to find if there was a difference in the career choices with respect to area of residence. Information was obtained by questionnaire from a sample of 612 ninth graders (15.8% of the 9th graders population in 1983) in 20 primary schools in various parts of the country. The sample consisted of 303 males and 309 females in their 16th year of age. The residence variable was divided into five categories: 1) Reykjavik, the city (with secondary education), 2) five coastal towns (with secondary education), 3) five villages (with no secondary education), 4) two inland towns (with secondary education), and 5) rural areas (with no secondary education).

  The questionnaire included such areas as: 1) school experience, 2) career education and vocational counseling, 3)students' educational and occupational aspirations and expectations for themselves, 4) family´s, friends and school personnels'  educational and occupational aspirations for the students as reported by the students, 5) parents education and occupation, 6) grandfather's occupation, and 7) the family situation.

  In the analysis of the data chi square, Z test, probabilities and contingency coefficient were used. Significance levels were set at the .05 level.

  The study revealed that a higher percentage of students in ''secondary education areas'' than in ''no secondary areas'' wanted to attend gymnasiums and comprehensive secondary schools. The gymnasiums only offered academic education but the comprehensive secondary schools had both academic and non-academic divisions.

  A higher percentage of the 9th graders in the city than in the other residence categories had decided to go to secondary school right after the Basic School. They also were more interested in attending the commercial schools and getting a university education than the others. Students outside the city were more interested in entering manual occupations than the city students were. And finally, the city students more than students from other areas had confidence that they themselves (not parents) could find the best education and occupation.