The Effectivenes of Late Adolescent Decison Making Style: Evidence from The University Students in Terms of Their Academic Achivement Level
University students fall in the category of late adolescent period, which is considered as the most important and sensitive development stages in an individual’s life. Among many activities that university students in this period need to make on its own are activities that concerns decision making processes. Namely, in this stage of life they need to make many decisions related to their personal development which will reflect on their social life (social relations) as well as in professional areas - on their career pathways. So, university education is an upgrade stage in one’s education process were knowledge, skills, values and believes are enriched thought many different activities: learning, researching, training, reading etc., and consequently shape attitudes and behaviours with regard to the many decisions they need/must to make. It is believed that in this stage of life youth have been consolidated their mental life, that they have crystallized their attitudes and opinions, and that they have reached rational mental maturation. They have developed self-esteem, confidence, independence and personality and are capable of making important decisions. During this period the independent decision making style develops. Decision-making styles differ from person to person, and the same decision making style cannot be suitable for every decision making-scenario. However, not all decisions are made in the same manner. In accordance to situation, type of the decision-making problem, characteristics of identification and problem-solving, and interaction with others in realization of certain activities, decision-makers use different decision-making styles. Logically and consequently, decisions of university students in this adolescent period have an impact on their academic achievement. Although adolescence is a crucial development stage in one’s life relatively few studies investigated the relevance of decision making in this stage. Namely, most empirical research has examined the relationship between decision making style and career development variables, but the rare are the ones which focus on the effect that decision making styles have on academic achievement. This paper targets the late stage of adolescence by examining decision making styles among young adults-university students in Croatia, as well as the relationship between individual decision making styles and academic achievement level. The sample is comprised of 77 Croatian university final year students at the Faculty of Economics in the University of Split. Due to the wide application and confirmed validation of the General Decision - Making Style (GDMS) test, developed by Scott & Bruce (1995), is used as the focus of survey. The results are interesting and somewhat puzzling. Based on the overall findings, the study offers suggestions for future research in this area. The implications of the findings are discussed and limitations of study with reference to future research directions are provided.
Keywords- Late adolescent period, Decision-making style, General decision-making style test, Academic achievement level.