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Acta Psychologica Sinica    2014, Vol. 46 Issue (6) : 807-822     DOI: 10.3724/SP.J.1041.2013.00807
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The Relationships between University Student’s Employability with Subjective and Objective Job-search Performance:Liner and Invert-U Relationships
YU Haibo;ZHENG Xiaoming;XU Chunyan;YAN Changli
(1 School of Government, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, China) (2 School of Economic and Management, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China) (3 School of Labor and Human Resources, Renmin University of China, Beijing 100872, China)
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Abstract  

The employment issue of university students is one of the most critical questions in China. Employability of university students is a decisive factor in their employment. The focus of studies on employability has changed from individuals with disabilities to common people. However, most prior studies on Chinese university students have focused on the effect of the ability factors on employability, but neglected other important factors. The research has two studies. The first one is to explore the construct of university student’s employability model. The research methods adopted in the first study include a literature review, interview, pilot study, and survey. Based on the literature review and a pilot study, the items of university student’s employability were explored. The survey data were from 1190 university students in 10 universities of different kinds from different districts in China. The survey data were used to conduct the exploratory factor analysis (EFA), and confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). The results showed that employability of Chinese university students was a multi-dimensional construct, which is comprised of 8 factors: interpersonal relationship, team cooperation, learning, resolving problems, social support, network difference, optimistic and open, and career identification. USEQ (University Student’s Employability Questionnaire) had high validity and reliability. The second study is to examine the effectiveness of university student’s employability on their subjective and objective (quantity of job offers) job-search performance. The survey data were 530 questionnaires from university students and their classmates/teachers of 12 Chinese universities. Hierarchical aggression analysis (HAR) was done between university student’s employability (Time 1) and objective job-search performance (Time 2: two weeks after the Time 1) and classmate/teacher-rated job-search performance. The results of the second study showed that university student’s employability was significantly and positively correlated with subjective job-research performance, however there was a invert-U relationship between university student’s employability and offers (objective). And the results also showed that career exploration is moderating the relationship between university student’s employability and offers. This means that the invert-U relationship between employability and offers was significant for high level of career exploration, but not significant for low level of career exploration. But career exploration was not found to moderate the relationship between employability and subjective job-search performance. At last, native place was found to moderate the relationship between employability and subjective job-search performance; that is to say, the relationship between employability and subjective job-search performance was significant for university students from the countryside, but not for the university students from city area. And native place was a moderator in the invert-U relationship between university student’s employability and offers. This means that the invert-U relationship between employability and offers was significant for the city university students, but not for the countryside university students. In the future, the construct model of Chinese university’s employability could be tested in the universities of different style, and by such research methods as a longitudinal research design or case study. And the dynamic relationship model between university student’s employability and employment success could be constructed and tested according to the attribute theory or personal capital theory. And the different moderating and mediating influence mechanisms need to be explored in the relationships between university students’ employability and objective and subjective employment performance according to the career information process theory and resource conservation theory to better cast light on the complex mechanisms of university student’s employability by organizations and labor.

Keywords employability      invert-U relationship      career exploration      attribute theory of employability      too much of a good thing effect     
Corresponding Authors: YU Haibo   
Issue Date: 30 June 2014
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YU Haibo;ZHENG Xiaoming;XU Chunyan;YAN Changli. The Relationships between University Student’s Employability with Subjective and Objective Job-search Performance:Liner and Invert-U Relationships[J]. Acta Psychologica Sinica,2014, 46(6): 807-822.
URL:  
http://journal.psych.ac.cn/xlxb/EN/10.3724/SP.J.1041.2013.00807     OR     http://journal.psych.ac.cn/xlxb/EN/Y2014/V46/I6/807
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