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Factors influencing career choice among undergraduate pharmacy students at a private university in Jordan

Raja'a A. Al-Qudah, Rama Abuhussein, Eliza Hasen, Mai Rezeq, Iman A. Basheti

Abstract

Background: Studies have explored potential reasons given by students in selection of the pharmacy profession as a career. These include the determination to help people, desire to be involved in the healthcare system and an interest in science subjects. There is a dearth of literature pertaining to the subject in Jordanian pharmacy students.

Aim: The study explored students’ perceived reasons for selecting pharmacy as a career, factors affecting career preferences and the role of university in decision-making regarding career.

Method: A cross-sectional study was conducted in randomly selected undergraduate students studying the pharmacy degree programme at the Applied Science Private University, Amman, Jordan. The study used a specially designed and validated questionnaire that documented the reasons given by students for choosing pharmacy degree as a major, most preferred career option, and factors affecting students’ career preference. Data were analysed using SPSS.

Results: A total of 250 students responded to the survey. The mean age of respondents was 21.96±5.38 years and 68.8% were females. Students mentioned family support (60%) and willingness to work in reputable profession (83.5%) as reasons to study pharmacy. Female students (30.8%) preferred to work in academia and hospital (p=0.043) while male students preferred working as medical sales representative (16.7%) and in the pharmaceutical industry (14.1%). Almost 50% agreed that the university provided sufficient information and work experience that influenced their career selection.

Conclusion: Several factors influenced students’ choice to study pharmacy and select a career. Students became more decisive about their career over the five-year curriculum. Students mentioned university education in defining their career selection. Gender was a determinant of students’ pharmacy career preferences.


Keywords

Career Choice; Jordan; Pharmacy; Undergraduate


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