Social identities among engineering students and through their transition to work: A longitudinal study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This article draws on a longitudinal and qualitative study of students in a master’s program in engineering. Interpretative phenomenological analysis was used to analyze annual, semi-structured interviews with ten students, from the first semester until one year after graduation. The program enjoys a high status and has a reputation of being highly demanding. The results show how the students categorize themselves in relation to outgroups, and partly supports earlier research. The longitudinal design made it possible to study how students’ social identities changed throughout their program, and when they went through a transition process to work. The graduated students developed an identity change, which involved a restructuring of the ways in which they understood their position in the social world.


External organisations
  • Linköping University
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Psychology
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)39-52
JournalStudies in Higher Education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Publication categoryResearch
Externally publishedYes