What I Want to Be When I Grow Up: A Qualitative Study of American and Japanese Children's Occupational Aspirations
Elementary and Early Childhood Education
The purpose of this study was to compare cultural differences in Japanese and American first graders' occupational aspirations. The data came from the written essays of children from both nations. The data analysis revealed that, when choosing careers, these children selected universal categories of occupations that included arts, professions, manual and related jobs, specialties, sports, and teaching. However, their cultures clearly influenced their career choices; specifically, American children chose vocations for self-related reasons, while their Japanese age-mates' choices were for reasons related both to self and to others.
Child Study Journal
Taylor, S., Wang, L., VanBrackle, A., & Kaneda, T. (2003). What I want to be when I grow up: A qualitative study of American and Japanese children's occupational aspirations. Child Study Journal, 33(3), 175-186.