Title

Working With Adult Learners at Community Colleges: An Exploratory Assessment of Perceived Faculty Training Needs

Date of Award

5-1-2003

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Department

Educational Leadership

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to assess the perceived training needs of foil-time faculty working with adult learners. There were two survey instruments developed for the study (i.e., one for administrators and another for faculty). Information on demographics of respondents, training areas for instructor’s development, preferred training setting and preferred educational format for training were gathered by the instrument. The variables under consideration included the following five sections: interpersonal skills; instruction and curriculum; community college leadership policy; culture, community and social issues and counseling adult learners. There was an openended question at the end of each section permitting written comments. Faculty and administrators from five community colleges located in North Dakota and western Minnesota participated in the study. A total of six administrators and 41 faculty completed the surveys.

The results indicated a difference in perceptions of administrators and faculty pertaining to faculty training needs in working with adult learners at community colleges. The community colleges surveyed offered faculty development programs to the faculty in the Fall 2002 semester. The administrator and faculty respondents to the survey indicated the items that they felt were essential for faculty training.

Administrators and faculty were in disagreement on some of the training items concerning instructional philosophy in the essential category of the survey based on the criteria of 10% difference or more between the administrators and faculty responses. The resul ts of the survey indicated that the respondents agreed on the preferred format and the training setting for faculty training programs.

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