Relocation after Bachelor Degree? Spatial Mobility of Students on Their Way to Master Programs.

Monday, 11 July 2016: 15:00
Location: Hörsaal BIG 2 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Nicole KAISER, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany
Miriam RUDEL, Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg, Germany
Many years have passed since the establishment of bachelor and master programs in course of the bologna process. However, knowledge about the new crossover between BA and MA programs is poor. Previous research has focused on descriptive statistics and on social selectivity at this new crossover. Moreover, research about the labor market entry has shown that family circumstances, former mobility experience and local employment perspectives influence mobility at this stage of life course.

Our research aims to answer the following research questions: Under which circumstances do students decide to change their university between BA- and MA-programs? In how far do individual and domestic characteristics determine the propensity to get mobile? Which regional factors influence this decision of spatial mobility?

Based on rational choice and matching theories changing university when starting a master program can be seen as an opportunity to improve local labor market perspectives, especially in terms of prospective career goals. Expectations of future income and demand for skilled workers differ between regional labor markets in Germany. Based on cost-benefit considerations students should decide to change university if the expected future gains of relocation exceed mobility costs.  Thus, we expect students to have a higher likelihood to change their university in case of havinga small local business network (hypothesis 1). Moreover, we expect that weak local family ties enhance the likelihood to change university (hypothesis 2). 

Data from the graduate study 2009 is used to analyze this crossover during university time. Methods applied include multi-level logistic regressions as data is hierarchical nested.

Knowledge of these mechanisms will be useful for universities as well as for companies and municipalities. It will draw up implications on how to deal with networks between universities and local companies.