Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Teaching & Learning


The primary objective of this study was to describe, analyze, and compare the vocational office education programs of the six European Economic Community countries (Belgium, Federal Republic of Germany, France, Italy, Luxembourg, The Netherlands). In these vocational office education programs, specific emphasis was placed on the secondary school level. The following facets were represented in the description and analysis of each country's program and in the comparison of the programs of the six countries: (1) philosophy and objectives; (2) schools; where available; (3) organization, administration, and supervision of these schools; (4) how schools are financed; (5) curriculum, content of courses, prerequisites; (6) work experience programs; (7) equipment and other physical facilities; (8) textbooks, teaching aids, and materials; (9) examinations; (10) standards; (11) types of jobs available to graduates; (12) participation of industry; (13) teacher education, recruitment, and supervision; (14) student recruitment, selection, and follow-up; (15) teacher and student organizations; (16) trends in the program for the country; (17) cooperation among the European Economic Community nations.

The descriptive research method using structured interviews was selected as the most feasible means of collecting the data. Each country's Ministry of Education, school administrators, and vocational office education teachers served as primary sources for the collection of the appropriate data. Each of the above-mentioned primary sources was visited personally. During each interview, a guide sheet was used. In the presentation of the data, the offerings for each country were described and analyzed in a separate chapter and then compared with the other five countries on selected facets in a final chapter.

Tradition plays a very important role in the educational systems of these countries. Thus, even necessary changes come slowly. Each country is attempting to update its own educational system in order to meet the demands of the modem world. Therefore, there has been little cooperation among the six countries in the development of one standard system of vocational education throughout the European Economic Community.

Students are encouraged to gain a general cultural background in addition to their vocational training for living in the modern world. The students are encouraged to develop oral and written skills in at least one or two foreign languages during their secondary school attendance .

Five of the six countries have a national ministry of education which governs the education system. Each lander or city-state of the Federal Republic of Germany is responsible for its own system of education. With the exception of Germany, there are curriculum syllabi available from the national ministry for the implementation of the vocational office education programs. Because of the size of theqe countries, their national systems of education are most equivalent to the individual state education systems in the United States.

Most of the schools are financed by local and either regional or national governments. Equipment ranged from no specialized equipment to the very newest of electronic computers, typewriters, and office machines.

Teacher organizations included general and specialized professional organizations and trade unions. The student organizations are set up primarily for social or sports purposes and are not connected with an academic area or program.

Participation of industry in the vocational office education programs varies with each country. Work experience programs are not a requirement in all programs. Thus, the availability of such programs varies. The apprenticeship programs that are available enable the students to support themselves financially while continuing their education in some type of vocational school.