Award Date

December 2022

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Psychology, Leadership, and Higher Education

First Committee Member

Lisa Bendixen

Second Committee Member

Lori Olafson

Third Committee Member

Gwen Marchand

Fourth Committee Member

Wendy Hoskins

Fifth Committee Member

Kendall Hartley

Number of Pages



College students are asked to make critical decisions about which academic major to choose and subsequently to make specific career decisions. Students come to college with a myriad of different skill sets, backgrounds, developmental levels, cognitive processes, familial support, and levels of self-efficacy that may influence how they make these decisions. The purpose of this study was to explore the role that epistemic cognition and self-efficacy may play in the career decision-making processes of college students utilizing a mixed methods approach. Results of this study indicate that there are internal and external influences that impact college students’ career decision-making processes that should be viewed individually from within a student’s unique ecosystem. Findings support the existence of career decision-making epistemic cognition which may provide higher education professionals with a new way to provide career decision-making assistance to their students.


Career Decision-Making; Career Decision-Making Epistemic Cognition; College Student Development; Epistemic Cognition; Mixed Methods; Self-Efficacy


Educational Psychology | Epistemology

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




IN COPYRIGHT. For more information about this rights statement, please visit