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Title:Educational orientation of adult and traditional students in community college vocational programs
Author(s):Hinkle, Gary Eugene
Doctoral Committee Chair(s):Kazanas, Hercules C.
Department / Program:Education
Degree Granting Institution:University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Subject(s):Education, Community College
Education, Adult and Continuing
Education, Vocational
Abstract:Adult learners represent an emerging clientele for most colleges and universities in this country. Due in part to their open enrollment structure, the nation's community colleges have been among the first to experience this influx of nontraditional learners. Many of these returning students are seeking to further their education for employment-related reasons, and are enrolling in increasing numbers in technical vocational programs.
The purpose of this study was to ascertain the educational preferences of adult and traditional students in technical vocational programs in the community colleges of Illinois. The goal of this research was to determine if there were significant differences between the educational orientations of traditional students and adult students enrolled in technical vocational programs which could impact the instructional methodology used in those programs.
An instrument, the Learning Style Preference Questionnaire, was developed to determine the educational orientation of students: teacher-directed (pedagogical) or self-directed (andragogical). This instrument was administered, utilizing a cluster sampling technique, to 342 students in technical vocational classes at six different community colleges within Illinois. The students were enrolled in one of five instructional programs: Associate Degree Nursing, Electronic Technology, Agriculture Mechanics, Programming, and Automotive Mechanics.
Analysis of the gathered data found that students in technical vocational programs tended to prefer a teacher-directed approach to instructional methodology. Analysis of variance was used to test the hypotheses for the study and found significant differences (alpha =.05) in the educational orientation of students grouped by gender, age, and work history. No significant differences were found among students grouped according to their level of educational attainment.
The study concluded that adult students prefer a more teacher-directed style of learning than do traditional students. It further concluded that female students also have a stronger preference for this learning style than do male students. Recommendations are made for implementation of these conclusions into technical vocational programs at the community college level, and suggestions for further research presented.
Issue Date:1990
Rights Information:Copyright 1990 Hinkle, Gary Eugene
Date Available in IDEALS:2011-05-07
Identifier in Online Catalog:AAI9026204
OCLC Identifier:(UMI)AAI9026204

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