John A. Eiden

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Teaching & Learning


The Problem: The purpose of this investigation was an analysis of the relationship between self actualization and selected aspects of the undergraduate elementary education program of senior students in the Center for Teaching and Learning.

The Procedure: The subjects (N=85) for this investigation were randomly selected from the total group of fulltime undergraduate Center for Teaching and Learning elementary education seniors officially registered as of August 28, 1972. The study was conducted during the fall and spring semesters 1972-73, and had a duration of six and one-half months. Other than preassessment and post-assessment, no special program of activity was required of the individuals with the research sample.

The instruments used in this study were: the Personal Orientation Inventory (POI), a published measure of self actualization, and two student questionnaires designed by the researcher to collect pertinent information relative to student background and student learning activities within the Center for Teaching and Learning. The POI was pre- and post-administered and the Fall Questionnaire was administered in conjunction with the pre-administration of the POI. The Spring Questionnaire was administered in conjunction with the post-administered POI.

The combined raw scores of the two major scales of the POI (Tc + I) were used to represent the self actualization index of subjects throughout the present study.

The analysis of the data involved the use of Pearsonian intercorrelation techniques. The t test for the related group situation was also employed to seek information relative to change in the subjects' self actualization as measured by the POI. Two-tailed tests for significance were used because the hypotheses were presented in null form and exploratory in nature.

Conclusions: This study has provided evidence which tends to support the folloxtfing conclusions. These conclusions are subject to the limitations of the study.

1. Randomly selected senior students registered as elementary education majors in the Center for Teaching and Learning showed positive growth in self actualization as measured by the POI during the six and one-half month research period.

2. Among senior elementary education majors in the Center for Teaching and Learning, the formal education level of their parents had a strong positive relationship to the subjects' level of self actualization as demonstrated by the correlation of the Fall Questionnaire data and the POI. Further, teaching experience prior to enrollment in the Center had a negative relationship to the self actualization level of these subjects.

3. There was no relationship between the self actualization of elementary education majors and the types of learning activities these subjects selected within the Center for Teaching and Learning as demonstrated by the low correlation between scores of the pre-administered POI and the learning activity data reported on the Spring Questionnaire. Also, self actualized subjects perceived the Center as advocating an open approach to education and agreed with the advocated approach. Further, self actualized subjects aspired to teach in more open environments than the conventional classroom after graduation. These aspirations did not change during the research period.

4. The most important factor related to positive change in self actualization of senior elementary education majors was self- directed involvement in Center for Teaching and Learning activities. Also, those subjects who participated in a wide variety of learning experiences which brought them in contact with children, who had fewer contact hours with children, and whose learning programs were highly self-directed in nature were also highly satisfied with their involvement in the Center for Teaching and Learning.