A Comparison of Student Perceptions and Uses of Accreditation at Selected Minnesota Technical Colleges
Date of Award
Doctor of Education (EdD)
The study compared perceptions and use of accreditation among students attending Minnesota technical colleges holding three different types of accreditation.
A total of 777 students from three different academic program areas were surveyed. The students were selected from eight technical colleges. Four colleges were accredited by the NCA Commission on Institutions of Higher Education, two colleges were accredited by NCA Colleges and Schools, and two colleges were accredited by the Minnesota State Board of Technical Colleges.
Students do use and possess some awareness of accreditation. Accreditation was used by 36.5 percent of the students in their choice of colleges and by 32.0 percent in their program selection. Of the students surveyed, 47.5 percent believed that accreditation indicated that an institution was a good institution. Additionally, there seemed to be some variables which influenced the degree of student use and awareness of accreditation. Students in the Health program area used accreditation more and were more aware of accreditation than students in the Trade and Industry program area and the Business and Office program area. Gender had a very slight influence on student awareness of accreditation with males reporting that the college was regionally accredited more than females. Distance from the student's residence to the college appeared to have no significant influence on student use and awareness of accreditation. Age, however, appeared to have some influence upon student use and awareness of accreditation with older students reporting that both the college was Minnesota State Board accredited and that their program was accredited more often than younger students. Students who have previously attended another institution indicated significantly more often that the college was Minnesota State Board accredited, that their program was accredited, and that credits do not always transfer to another institution within the same state than students who had not attended another institution.
Many students (44.9 percent) reported that both college and program accreditation was important to them. Others (24.3 percent) rated program accreditation as most important while 14.4 percent rated college accreditation as most important. The students' number one choice of what accreditation should do was to assure that current material was used in class.
Henry, Kenneth W., "A Comparison of Student Perceptions and Uses of Accreditation at Selected Minnesota Technical Colleges" (1992). Theses and Dissertations. 1168.