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Impact of university training on UK graduates' decision making

Impact of university training on UK graduates' decision making Purpose – Studies regarding rational decision have been conducted over many years and one of the common understandings of rationality in financial terms is that investors are assumed to be risk averse. However, in a previous paper, Xu and Dent, identify that property professionals in both the UK and China do not behave in a rational manner as assumed by traditional finance models. This is because the sample in the study is risk seeking when the probabilities of receiving capital gains are low. This current paper aims to explore whether university training would influence the respondents’ risk preferences. A survey of undergraduate and postgraduate real estate students at Oxford Brookes University was used to investigate the potential of university training to improve people's decision making, so as to enhance the rationality of their behaviour. Design/methodology/approach – A survey of undergraduate and postgraduate real estate students at Oxford Brookes University was conducted during the academic year 2007/2008 to investigate the potential of university training to improve people's decision making, so as to enhance the rationality of their behaviour. In total, there were 206 students participated in the survey (156 undergraduates and 52 postgraduates). Findings – This paper finds that preferences of Oxford Brookes University students seem likely to change once the same question is phrased differently. This preference is more relevant to the university training they received than their gender. After three years’ study at universities, students seem more likely to make rational decisions, i.e. similar to normative theory suggestions regarding the actions of rational people. Originality/value – This paper is only a start of behavioural research of people's decision making, and further studies could also cover areas such as property experts' decision‐making process or validity of other assumptions of expected utility theory. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Journal of European Real Estate Research Emerald Publishing

Impact of university training on UK graduates' decision making

Journal of European Real Estate Research , Volume 1 (3): 11 – Oct 24, 2008

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2008 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1753-9269
DOI
10.1108/17539260810924445
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – Studies regarding rational decision have been conducted over many years and one of the common understandings of rationality in financial terms is that investors are assumed to be risk averse. However, in a previous paper, Xu and Dent, identify that property professionals in both the UK and China do not behave in a rational manner as assumed by traditional finance models. This is because the sample in the study is risk seeking when the probabilities of receiving capital gains are low. This current paper aims to explore whether university training would influence the respondents’ risk preferences. A survey of undergraduate and postgraduate real estate students at Oxford Brookes University was used to investigate the potential of university training to improve people's decision making, so as to enhance the rationality of their behaviour. Design/methodology/approach – A survey of undergraduate and postgraduate real estate students at Oxford Brookes University was conducted during the academic year 2007/2008 to investigate the potential of university training to improve people's decision making, so as to enhance the rationality of their behaviour. In total, there were 206 students participated in the survey (156 undergraduates and 52 postgraduates). Findings – This paper finds that preferences of Oxford Brookes University students seem likely to change once the same question is phrased differently. This preference is more relevant to the university training they received than their gender. After three years’ study at universities, students seem more likely to make rational decisions, i.e. similar to normative theory suggestions regarding the actions of rational people. Originality/value – This paper is only a start of behavioural research of people's decision making, and further studies could also cover areas such as property experts' decision‐making process or validity of other assumptions of expected utility theory.

Journal

Journal of European Real Estate ResearchEmerald Publishing

Published: Oct 24, 2008

Keywords: Decision making; Behaviour; Training; Universities; Graduates; United Kingdom

References