• A
  • A
  • A
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • ABC
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
  • А
Regular version of the site

Trajectories in Education and Careers

Priority areas of development: sociology
The project has been carried out as part of the HSE Program of Fundamental Studies.

Goal of research: to analyze typical educational and career trajectories as well as cultural structures and factors influencing them.


This longitudinal project includes regular panel surveys and in-depth interviews with 1-2% of the panel. Survey questionnaire captures aspects of respondents’ trajectories in spheres of education, career and family. In-depth interviews are aimed at gathering more detailed data about mechanisms of education and career choice and symbolic structures which shape life trajectories.

Survey datasets are analyzed with longitudinal methods. Interviews are transcribed and thematically coded. They are analyzed with interpretative methods and case-studies, by revealing typical elements and patterns which organize educational choices and trajectories.

Empirical base of research:

Empirical base of research is the panel study “Trajectories in Education and Careers” which has a multi-cohort design and contains one national panel and several regional panels. National panel started in 2011 and is based on the sample of 5 thousand 8th grade secondary school students, participants of TIMSS 2011 and PISA 2012 (as an additional sample). In 2017 the sixth wave of the study was conducted, 81% of the initial sample took part in the survey. Analysis is also based on two waves of in-depth interviews with participants of the national panel and participants of university students’ panels in two region (Yaroslavl’ oblast and the Republic of Tatarstan).

Results of research:

Development of methodology of longitudinal research

Methods aimed to prevent attrition are developed specifically for respondents who study in universalities and colleges or enter labor marker, and are geographically spread. Panel attrition decline in the second consecutive wave proves efficiency of these methods.

Theory development

Educational and career trajectories specific features in modern society are shown in the context of theories of risk-society and reflexive modernity.  Approach to analysis of education and career trajectories using resources of cultural sociology is developed; its main focus is on education and career choice and its temporal aspect.

New empirical knowledge

The database of the sixth wave of the national panel is prepared. Analytical materials are made based on the results of the previous waves. 5 waves of the national panel are analyzed in order to prepare a map of school-to-work transitions. Gender or track differences of these transitions (academics vs. non-academic) are shown. In-depth interviews with national panel participants who have chosen non-academic track are used to develop model of career and educational choice specific for this track and to make interpretative analysis of cases. Two waves of in-depth interviews with university students in regions of Tatarstan and Yaroslavl’ oblast are used to analyze school-to-work transition in older cohort.

Level of implementation,  recommendations on implementation or outcomes of the implementation of the results

Elaborations in longitudinal methodology and methods of preventing attrition may be applied in design of other prospective longitudinal studies both large-scale and local studies.

Databases of the national panel may be used by the scholars in sociology and economy of education, life-course studies, by those who are interested in inequality studies and investigates its primary and secondary effects on education or school-to-work transitions.

Results of the survey and in-depth data analysis may be used for preparation of analytical materials and recommendations for educational policy.


Косякова Ю., Ястребов Г. А., Янбарисова Д. М., Куракин Д. Ю. Воспроизводство социального неравенства в российской образовательной системе / Пер. с англ. // Журнал социологии и социальной антропологии. 2016. Т. XIX. № 5 (88). С. 76-97.
Бессуднов А. Р., Куракин Д. Ю., Малик В. М. Как возник и что скрывает миф о всеобщем высшем образовании // Вопросы образования. 2017. № 3. С. 83-109. doi
Максимов А. Г., Тележкина М. С. Оценка функции спроса на высшее образование // В кн.: Системное моделирование социально-экономических процессов: труды 42-ой международной научной школы-семинара имени академика С.С.Шаталина / Сост.: В. Г. Гребенников, И. Н. Щепина. Воронеж : Истоки, 2019. С. 496-501.
Павленко Е. С., Якубовская А. А. Интерпретации взросления и формирование образовательных траекторий // Мониторинг общественного мнения: Экономические и социальные перемены. 2020. № 3. С. 376-390. doi