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  Partner: UNT Libraries
 Decade: 2010-2019
 Degree Discipline: Higher Education
 Collection: UNT Theses and Dissertations
Academic Advising Professional Characteristics and Standards: Do Academic Advisors Follow Recognized Professional Standards in Their Work?
There were two main purposes of this quantitative study. The first purpose was to identify characteristics associated with the selected sample of academic advisors that comprise study. Secondly, the study sought to determine how well work related activities of a selected population of academic advisors correlate with professional characteristics constructs and professional standards constructs of academic advising as a profession. The study used Habley’s (1986) characteristics of a profession to derive the studies professional characteristic construct, education activities, research activities, and professional development activities as it relates to a selected group of academic advisors work related activities. The studies professional standards construct was derived from five Council for the Advancement of Standards (CAS) professional standards for academic as it relates to a selected group of academic advisors work related activities. The study of 78 out of 210 identified full-time academic advisors at two-and four-year public colleges and universities in the North Texas Region utilized a multidimensional researcher-developed Web survey instrument designed to measure professional standards and characteristic within the field of academic advising. Study results reinforced current criticism of research and education activities within the field of academic advising showing that the lack of scholarly research and education activities among academic advisors decreases significantly their efforts towards professionalization. Also, professional standards construct results suggest that the utilization of CAS standards for academic advising as an evaluation tool may enhance an academic advisor’s knowledge of professional standards within the field. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500023/
The Academic and Athletic Experiences of African-american Males in a Division I (Fbs) Football Program
This study investigated the academic and athletic experiences of African-American males in a Division I football bowl subdivision football program. Critical race theory, identity development model, and social learning model were the theoretical frameworks used as the critical lenses in a qualitative design to examine the participants. The participants’ responses were analyzed and interpreted using thematic analysis. A qualitative research design, which included individual interviews with 10 second year African-American male football players, was used to address this research problem. The goal was to bring together both the psychological and sociological perspectives and to challenge participants to candidly describe their academic and athletic experiences and attitudes toward obtaining an undergraduate degree. Four themes were determined in the data analysis: differential treatment and determining oneself, time management, relationships, and career aspirations. In relation to the theoretical frameworks, the development of self-confidence and knowledge of balancing their academic and athletic schedules was critical for all participants. The sense of feeling different and challenged because of the differences in culture and experience was evident. From this study, university and collegiate athletics administrators may better understand the backgrounds, challenges, and learning needs of this population. As a result, higher education personnel may improve the services they provide these young men in hopes of educating and developing whole persons—physically, emotionally, intellectually, socially, and spiritually—to become well-rounded and functional in contemporary society. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc407844/
Academic Self-efficacy of Adult First-generation Students Enrolled in Online Undergraduate Courses
This study examined differences between adult first-generation (AFG) and adult-continuing generation (ACG) students’ academic self-efficacy with regard to the online courses in which they were currently enrolled. The study used an online survey methodology to collect self-reported quantitative data from 1,768 undergraduate students enrolled in an online course at a mid-sized, four-year public university in the southwestern United States; 325 cases were usable for the study. The t-tests revealed no statistically significant differences between the academic self-efficacy of the AFG and ACG students. Parents’ level of educational attainment was unrelated to adult students’ academic self-efficacy with online courses. Ordinary least-squares analysis was used to evaluate student characteristics that might be associated with academic self-efficacy in the online environment. A combination of gender, GPA, age, race/ethnicity (White, Black, Hispanic, and other), and number of previous online courses predicted a statistically significant 12% of the variance in academic self-efficacy in an online environment (p < .001). Age (p < .001) and self-efficacy were positively correlated, meaning that adult students reported greater academic self-efficacy than did younger students; and number of previous online courses (p < .001) was also positively correlated to academic self-efficacy, indicating that students with greater experience with online courses reported a greater sense of academic self-efficacy in that environment than students who had completed fewer online courses. This study has implications of providing additional insight for higher education practitioners working with adult learners. Identifying additional factors influencing adult learners’ academic self-efficacy in an online academic environment may be useful when building effective strategies to improve online retention and completion rates for these students. Future research should examine a wider variety of variables beyond demographic characteristics. External and internal factors, along with existing theories of behaviors should be investigated to help explain adult persistence and retention online and in face-to-face courses. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700075/
Accelerated Degree Program Faculty: Motivation to Teach
Adult educators are a growing part of American higher education. Because of their increasing prominence in adult education, it is essential to understand what roles these educators play and what motivates them to remain in the profession despite poor work prospects and conditions. Research to date, however, focuses primarily on the adult learner and not the adult educator. The purpose of this qualitative, multiple-case study was to explore the role and motivation for teaching of adult educators employed as adjunct faculty in an accelerated degree program at a small, liberal arts college in the northwest United States. Purposeful sampling was used to select the five participants for the study. All participants taught in the program for more than five years and were considered to be successful in their positions by peers, students, and administrators. The study employed a preliminary demographic survey to solicit initial background data on the instructors. Other data collection included in-depth, open-ended, face-to-face interviews, document analysis, and classroom observation. The results showed that all five participants identified the following roles and assumed them in the classroom: (a) facilitator, (b) listener, (c) specialist, (d) guide, (e) adviser, and (f) co-learner or colleague. Further results showed that all five participants were motivated to teach in the program for reasons other than monetary compensation. Although participants shared different levels of personal commitment to the institution, they all expressed extensive commitment to teaching, their discipline, and students. Motivating factors for teaching were (a) opportunity to teach part time, (b) love for the subject, (c) opportunity to gain more expertise in the field, (d) opportunity to grow and learn, (e) opportunity to give back, and (f) student success and growth. A major practical implication of this study is that adjunct faculty in an adult education program are motivated to teach for different reasons, but the primary motivation can be seen as altruistic versus monetary and practical. If college administrators want to produce and retain successful adjunct faculty, they must recruit and hire those individuals whose motivation for teaching is altruistic with a desire to enrich the lives of students. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc849699/
Alternative Certification Teaching Programs in Texas: A Historical Analysis
Before 1984, nearly 975 of teachers entered the teaching profession after graduating from a traditional university-based program. However, beginning in the mid-1980s, alternative routes leading to teacher certification began to emerge in the United States. As of 2010, nearly one-third of all new teachers graduated from an alternative preparation program. As alternative certification (AC) routes approach 30 years since establishment, programs continue to evolve and increase in enrollment. This study focused on the changes that have come about in the maturation of alternative certification programs in Texas since legislation was passed in 1985. The purpose of the study was to delineate the evolution of AC programs using a historical approach, the study used both primary and secondary resources as research tools and employed the use of eight interviews and the literature review for the collection of data. The prediction of future teacher shortages, the need for diversity in the profession the political view to privatize education, and economic recessions were all motivating factors for establishing alternative teacher programs. In the beginning, graduation from AC programs were perceived as not authentic teachers and not as prepared for teaching as graduates from traditional programs. AC programs have become a legitimate and viable option for educator preparation programs as they offer greater flexibility, staff/instructor diversity, and multiple approaches to instruction. This data suggests that AC programs in Texas have emerged as a real and sustainable option to traditional certification programs leading to certification and licensure. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799511/
Analysis of Graduation Rates for Four-year Colleges: A Model of Institutional Performance Using IPEDS
Under the George W. Bush U.S. presidential administration, the federal government pushed for greater accountability among institutions of higher education for educational outcomes. Graduation rate is a key performance indicator of institutional accountability. Previous researchers of student attrition focused primarily on the effects of student level factors on student persistence/withdrawal behavior. Recently, researchers put more focus on the effects of institutional characteristics on graduation rates, but most of these studies were exploratory and based on multiple regression models. No institutional model has existed to synthesize their results within a theoretical framework. Such an institutional model is needed to explain the process of student persistence at the institutional level. The purpose of this study was to develop a model of institutional performance in graduation rate for four-year, public and private not-for-profit, Title IV institutions in the United States. This study validated the institutional model based on the IPEDS dataset using the structural equation modeling (SEM) technique. Further group comparison analyses are conducted by fitting the same SEM model to several subgroup datasets based on grouping variables such as control, geographical region and state. Benchmarking analyses were conducted to demonstrate how administrators and policy-makers can use the institutional model to compare the performance of an institution with its peers and what policy changes can they pursue to improve graduation rates. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc28420/
An Assessment of Undergraduate Course Syllabi in the Departments of English at Universities in Taiwan
This exploratory, qualitative research explored the extent that course syllabi in the Departments of English in 13 public and 9 private universities in Taiwan reflect the inclusion of syllabus components to promote learning as recommended in the literature in the United States. Research questions included: what components can be inferred from the literature in the U.S. for the recommended components of a course syllabus, for the components for a learning-centered syllabus, and for a model to analyze Bloom's cognitive level of learning? And when these are applied to analyze course syllabi in English courses, are syllabi in these universities congruent with the models? The research identified and analyzed 235 course syllabi from the core courses listed online at these universities. The findings indicated that these syllabi are highly congruent with the syllabus components template; 68% of the syllabi included seven or more of the ten components. Additionally, these syllabi reflect medium congruency with the learning-centered syllabus template. Verbs used in objectives and learning outcomes in different English courses indicate different levels of cognitive learning goals as identified by Bloom's cognitive domain. Additional findings indicate that there was no difference in inclusion of components based on where faculty earned their doctoral degree. This research assumed similarities between higher education in Taiwan and the U.S., conclusions indicate that the course syllabi in Departments of English in Taiwan are congruent with the models recommended in the literature in the U.S. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc28451/
Baptist Pastoral Leadership: An Analysis for Curriculum Development
Through a qualitative study utilizing in-depth interviews, practitioner opinion was gathered regarding how Christian institutions of higher education, primarily Baptist seminaries, may better utilize formal and continuing education to prepare clergy for pastoral leadership. The sample of ten subjects for this study, drawn from the 550 active senior pastors in the Dallas Baptist Association and the Kauf-Van Baptist Association, was selected based on a maximum variation sampling method. The intention was to provide a better understanding of the leadership skills required by senior pastors, to help develop pastoral ministries curriculum and to assess the potential effectiveness of continuing education for pastoral leadership. The subjects indicated that the formal degree program of their seminary did equip them with the basic knowledge needed for pastoral leadership but it did not provide them in sufficiency with the necessary, practical skills for pastoral leadership. The pattern that emerged from the data indicates that, overall, seminaries are providing a quality education in preparing pastors for the ministry in their formal degree plans. However, seminaries may have opportunities to be of further service and to gain a competitive advantage vis a vis other seminaries by enhancing and expanding their continuing education programs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc30446/
Bridging the Gap Between Access and Success: a Study of the Impact of an Access and Success Program on Academic Outcomes of Low-income College Freshmen
In response to the increasing cost of college, colleges and universities are leveraging financial aid and academic support services to implement access and success programs intended to help financially disadvantaged students afford and persist through a baccalaureate degree program. This research is a study of the efficacy of one such program at a large research university in the southwestern region of the United States. The study sample included low-income program participants in four cohorts of freshmen enrolling for the first time in college from fall 2007 (Cohort 1) to fall 2010 (Cohort 4) and a comparison group of almost 400 low-income freshmen who enrolled for the first time in college in fall 2006 (the year prior to program implementation) for a sample total of over 2150 students. Approximately 64% were female, 36 % were males, over 60% were African American and Hispanic, and over 75% were first generation college students. Logistic regression was used to measure probability and odds of their academic success and retention in the first year of college utilizing gender, ethnicity, parental degree attainment, and program participation as the independent variables. The logistic regression models illustrated that participation in the program netted a consistently positive and significant impact on academic success across all cohorts, increasing the odds ratio for academic success no less than three times in favor of program participants vis-à-vis the comparison group. The statistical models illustrated that the program netted a slight positive impact on the odds of retention, particularly for African American students. Therefore, the principle implication that might be drawn from this study is that by strategically leveraging financial aid and academic support services, access and success programs can facilitate higher rates of academic success and retention for financially disadvantaged college students. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149575/
A Case Study of Undergraduate Course Syllabi in Taiwan
Higher education in Taiwan has been influenced by U.S. and Western practices, and syllabi represent one means to verify this. However, limited research exists in Taiwan on course syllabi and on similarities of syllabi with practices in other countries. In the U.S. as the paradigm shifted from teaching to learning and to the learning-centered context, scholars argued that syllabi should be learning-centered. Given the assumption that higher education in Taiwan is similar to U.S. higher education and the call for a learning-centered context, this qualitative research examined 180 undergraduate syllabi at a public university in Taiwan with a (traditional) syllabus component template and a learning-centered syllabus component template derived from the literature in the U.S. to describe (1) the contents of syllabi, and (2) the extent that syllabi in Taiwan were congruent to U. S. syllabus component templates. Syllabi at this university were highly congruent with the (traditional) syllabus component template and were congruent at the medium level with the learning-centered component template. About 90% of syllabi included 8 of 10 major components. Additional findings included: 70% of faculty were male, and 30% were female; more than 75% of the faculty earned their doctoral degrees from the United States or Europe; gender made no difference on inclusion of major components for both templates; there was no difference in inclusion of components on both templates for faculty who earned their doctoral degrees from the U.S. or Taiwan; a high percentage (80%) of college courses adopted English textbooks published in the U.S.; some differences existed and use of English in the syllabus and on components included in the syllabi. Based on these syllabi, it is evident that syllabi in Taiwan represent course planning and organization congruent to recommended practices in the United States. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc28487/
College Success for all Students: An Investigation of Early Warning Indicators of College Readiness
The purpose of this quantitative study was to determine early warning indicators of college readiness among early college high school students at selected Texas institutions of higher education. Participants in this study included 134 of the class of 2010 from two early college high schools. The graduates were 86% Hispanic, 8% African American, 3% White, 2% Asian, 1% American Indian and 72% economically disadvantaged. A causal-comparative research design using multiple regression analysis of the data collected revealed that each one unit increase in world history was associated with a .470 (p < .05) increase in college GPA, while each one unit increase in Algebra I was associated with a .202 (p < .05) increase. Therefore, student grades in high school Algebra I and world history were the strongest statistically significant indicators that a student will maintain a 2.5 college GPA during the first year of college. According to the early warning indicators, students who maintain a grade of A or B in Algebra I are 10 times more likely to be college ready while having a 78% chance of maintaining a 2.5 or better in college courses. Further, the findings from this study found no significant relationship between TAKS assessment, socioeconomic status, gender or ethnicity and a student's ability to maintain a 2.5 or higher college GPA. Based on the findings from this study, the author recommends an examination of the high school curriculum with the goal of ensuring that students gain competency in courses that indicate college readiness. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc33141/
Community College Choice and the Role of Undermatching in the Lives of African Americans
This study explored why academically qualified African American students, those eligible to attend four-year institutions, choose to attend community colleges and are, thereby, undermatched. This qualitative study investigated how these students navigated the college choice process, what influenced their decision to attend a community college, what their experience at a community college was like, and their aspirations to obtain a baccalaureate degree. Purposeful sampling was used to gather a sample of 19 African American students attending community college in Dallas, Texas. The sample included 14 females and five males. Data were collected through 40-60 minute semi-structured interviews and a brief demographic survey. The conceptual frameworks for this study included Kassie Freeman’s predetermination model that includes cultural considerations in college choice and the Somers et al. model that addresses factors that increase the likelihood of a student choosing to attend a community college. This integrated framework captures the role that family and culture play in African American community college choice. Findings suggest that the community college choice influences for academically eligible African American students vary from traditional college choice models. Whereas factors such as cost, location, and the role of peers played somewhat of a role in their choice, participants were also heavily influenced by sports, self-perceptions of maturity, and the perceptions of their families. Another key finding was that the effects of undermatching vary. All of the participants in this study felt that attending a community college fostered transfer preparedness, supported personal development, and promoted their academic success. However, some of the participants also felt that attending a community college hindered their sense of autonomy and limited their social engagement. This variation leads to the conclusion that undermatching effects vary and are dependent upon a variety of contextual factors. Policy and practice recommendations are provided for parents, teachers, counselors, and higher education professionals. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700095/
Community College Student Success in Developmental Mathematics Courses: a Comparison of Four Instructional Methods
The student success rates for three developmental mathematics courses (prealgebra, elementary algebra, and intermediate algebra) taught through four instructional methods (lecture, personalized system of instruction [PSI], hybrid, and online) were examined. The sample consisted of 9,211 students enrolled in a large Texas community college from fall 2009 through spring 2011. Student success was defined as a grade of C or better. Chi-square tests were used to compare the three developmental mathematics courses success rates. Statistically significant differences in student success were found between all four methods of instruction for all three mathematics courses (prealgebra: χ2 [df = 3] = 107.90, p < 0.001; elementary algebra: χ2 [df = 3] = 88.39, p < 0.001; intermediate algebra χ2 [df = 3] = 254.18, p < 0.001). Binary logistic regression modeling was used to determine to what extent age, gender, ethnicity, residency, Pell eligibility and mode of instruction accounted for the community college students’ course success for each of the three developmental mathematics courses. For prealgebra, the independent variables of gender, race, age, residency, and mode of instruction made statistically significant contributions to the model (χ2 [df = 14, n = 1,743] = 159.196, p < .001; Nagelkerke R2 = .119), with greater success among female, White, younger, out of country students taking the course through lecture. For elementary algebra, the independent variables of race, age, residency, and mode of instruction made statistically significant contributions to the logistic regression model (χ2 [df = 14, n = 2,731] = 816.223, p < .001; Nagelkerke R2 = .358), with greater success among , younger, out of country students taking the course through lecture, hybrid or PSI. For intermediate algebra, only race and Pell eligibility made a statistically significant contribution to the logistic regression, with greater success among White, Pell-eligible students, and mode of instruction did not contribute significantly to the model (χ2 [df = 14, n = 3,936] = 53.992, p < .001; Nagelkerke R2 = .019). Recommendations for research and implications for practice are provided. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500150/
Comparative Analysis Of 105 Higher Education Doctoral Programs In The United States
The mission types of 105 current doctoral programs in higher education and the extent to which their missions have changed since a similar study was conducted by Dressel and Mayhew in 1974 was studied. The curricula offerings of these programs by degree type (e.g., Ed.D. & Ph.D.) were compared with Fife’s 1991 findings. Finally, the study examined the various modes of instruction (e.g., classroom, online, cohort, blended) these programs utilize. The population was the 131 U.S. higher education doctoral program coordinators or directors who were identified using the ASHE Higher Education Program Directory. A total of 46 hosted Ed.D. programs and 59 hosted Ph.D. programs for a combined total of 105 doctoral programs. An electronic survey, developed by utilizing an expert panel and the cognitive interviewing technique, was sent to each participant. A total of 46 hosted Ed.D. programs and 59 hosted Ph.D. programs for a combined total of 105 doctoral programs. A total of 77 institutions (59%) returned usable questionnaires, and six other universities (5%) indicated their doctoral higher education programs no longer existed. Twenty-three of the responding institutions identified with a research-focused mission; 25 institutions identified with a practitioner-based mission; and 28 institutions identified with both types of missions. Pearson r correlation analysis revealed no statistically significant relationship between degree type and course offerings (r = .123, p = .05). However, ? 2 revealed that, compared to Ed.D. programs, Ph.D. programs enrolled significantly more full-time students (? 2 (3) = 14.504, p < .05). Through further analysis, a core of nine courses emerged for more than 75% of all higher education doctoral programs. Those courses are general administration of higher education, finance of higher education, legal studies, history of higher education, philosophy and theoretical foundations of higher education, teaching/learning in higher education, student affairs administration, college student research, and a dissertation seminar. Nearly 80% of all doctoral programs utilize some form of alternate delivery method (e.g., online, cohort, blended) in addition to traditional classroom instruction. Furthermore, Ph.D. programs employ larger full-time faculties, conduct more research, obtain more external funding, and publish more scholarship than Ed.D. programs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103404/
The Correlates of Number of Minority Faculty, Minority Student Organizations, Diversity Course Offerings, and Geographic Location to Minority Student Enrollment in Texas Colleges
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This study examined the correlates between the dependent variables African-American and Hispanic student enrollment in Texas public higher education to the independent variables institution type, education region, faculty demographics, curricular offerings and student organizations. Data for African-American (n = 124,000) and Hispanic enrollment (n = 314,000) in all Texas public higher education institutions (n = 109) for the 2008 academic year were examined. Significant results, using a statistical significance of p = .005, were reported for two of the variables. A correlation of Pearson's r = .946 and statistical significance of p = .000 was observed between African-American student enrollment and the percentage representation of African-American faculty in the same institution. A correlation of Pearson's r = .982 and statistical significance of p = .000 was observed between Hispanic student enrollment and the percentage representation of Hispanic faculty in the same institution. The results of this study found significant relationships between the presence of African-American and Hispanic faculty and enrollment of African-American and Hispanic students. Recommendations are made for exploring these findings in further detail. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc33131/
Correlates Of Three Year Transfer Student Retention Rates With Race, Gender, Age, Credit Hours, And Place Of Residence At A Regional, Public University
This dissertation examined the relationship between the three year academic success of transfer students and the variables of race, gender, age, number of transfer credit hours, and place of residence. The study was conducted at Midwestern State University, a public, regional four-year institution and followed the incoming transfer classes of the fall 2005 (N = 292), 2006 (N = 323), and 2007 (N = 286) semesters. The subjects included in this study were all new transfer students who met the university.s requirement to live on campus. The dependent variable, three year academic success, was defined as whether or not the student was still persisting or had graduated within three years from the date of initial enrollment. The independent variables were housing status during the first semester after transfer, age at time of transfer, gender, race, and the number of credit hours at the time of transfer. The first research question aimed to determine if housing status impacted the three year academic success in the population. Chi-square analysis found that there were no significant distributions of the students who lived on-campus and the students who lived off-campus during their first semester after transfer. The second research question aimed to determine if the variables of age at the time of transfer, credit hours at the time of transfer, gender, race, and campus housing status impacted three year success. Logistic Regression showed that only gender (.003) was significant at ? = .05. The Exp(B) value for gender (1.514), showed that females were 1.514 times more likely to be successful than males when all other variables were controlled. The effect size of .019 indicated that the model only accounted for 1.9% of the variance, indicating that the model may not be a great predictor of student academic success. The results of this study, conducted at a regional, public, four-year institution, show that transfer students who lived in campus housing during their first semester after transfer did not achieve three year academic success at a significantly different rate than those students who lived off-campus. However, the study did find that females were 1.514 more time likely to be successful than their male counterparts. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103360/
A Critical Analysis of Ph.D. and Ed.D. Dissertation Abstracts Published during 2009 and 2010
The completion of the dissertation certifies the completion of the academic rigors of the doctoral degree and verifies the candidate's achievement of independent scholarship. The Carnegie Project on the Education Doctorate was a 5-year effort to define the distinct purpose of the Ph.D. and Ed.D. in education. The Carnegie Project sought to ensure that the academy moved forward on two fronts: rethinking and reclaiming the research doctorate, the Ph.D., and developing the distinct professional practice doctorate, the Ed.D. The project determined that there has been a blurring of the distinctions between these two degrees over the past half-century which invites examination of their purpose and their content. Given this, this qualitative study examined Ph.D. and Ed.D. dissertation abstracts to determine if abstracts differ in terms of these selected factors: research design, data analysis, use of theoretical frameworks, subjects or participants, the setting or context of the study, and to compare Ph.D. and Ed.D. abstracts to the abstract format recommended in literature to explore if there are differences in the abstracts and to determine to what extent abstracts in either degree are congruent with the recommendations. This study used a digital dissertation database to study 100 Ed.D. dissertation abstracts and 100 Ph.D. dissertation abstracts on the topic of higher education. The design was qualitative and used a frequency of terms and an accepted understanding of concepts between two researchers to reach a conclusion regarding the contents of the abstracts. Two researchers separately coded a selection of dissertations for each degree to establish an acceptable level of credibility for the coding of the abstracts. Multiple findings describe similarities and differences between these two degrees and the extent of the convergence of Ed.D. and Ph.D. abstracts with recommended abstract components in the literature. The study concludes that many dissertations do not include all eight of the criteria of an ideal abstract and many are not likely to include five of the items. Dissertation abstracts, as they currently exist, are not good tools for use of dissertations as a resource for ongoing research. The study recommends that a national norm for dissertation abstracts would be helpful in improving the ability to use dissertations as a resource for future research. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc68024/
Declining Participation in Fraternity and Sorority Life: a Comparison of Perceptions of Greek-lettered Organizations Between Affiliated and Non-affiliated Students
This quantitative study was used to determine the perceptions that may have caused a decline in membership in fraternities and sororities and to examine active organization involvement between affiliated and unaffiliated students at a single higher education institution in northeast Texas. Eight perceptions were given regarding fraternity and sorority life and why students chose to remain unaffiliated with fraternities or sororities. The instrument used was a modified version of the Extracurricular Involvement Inventory, created by Winston and Massaro (1987) and was administered to participants online via Survey Monkey. There were 206 participants total: 55.3% were female, and 44.7% were male. Regarding ethnicities, 47.0% were African American, 37.5% were Caucasian, and 15.5% were Hispanic/Latino. Out of the participants, 20.9% were in their freshman or sophomore year, 23.8% were juniors, 33.5% were seniors, and 21.8% were graduate students. Participants’ ages ranged from 18 to 32, with a mean of 22.89 (SD = 2.81). The research questions were analyzed using two techniques: logistic regression for the first question and multiple regression for the second question. Findings for the first research question indicated that lack of values, lack of diversity, poor academic attitudes, and a requirement of too much time were primary reasons unaffiliated students chose not to join a fraternity or sorority. Findings for the second question indicated that Greek-affiliated students averaged higher involvement intensity scores when compared to unaffiliated students. Practical implications and future research are discussed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc500187/
Determining the Reliability and Use of the Center for Community College Student Engagement Survey of Entering Student Engagement As a Tool to Predict Student Success in a Large Urban Community College District
As community colleges have gained more recognition as a viable pathway for students to enter higher education, they have faced greater accountability that has prompted both practitioners and policy makers to attempt to find solutions and tools, such as National Survey of Student Engagement, Community College Survey of Student Engagement, and Survey of Entering Student Engagement (SENSE), to aid in improving student success outcomes. This study addressed the validity and reliability of the SENSE instrument using a three-pronged approach via student data collected over 3 years of SENSE administrations at a large urban community college (n = 4,958). The instrument was first factor analyzed against the SENSE benchmarks for effective educational practice through generalized least squares and principal component exploratory factor analysis. Although the instrument did not deliver a chi-square factored fit for the six benchmark categories, consistent loadings were observed. Second, construct reliability was tested for each benchmark category, and the survey as a whole using Cronbach’s alpha. All categories did not yield sufficient coefficient scores for establishing construct reliability. However, the overall survey produced a Cronbach’s alpha of .85, clearly indicating construct reliability for all items combined. Third, correlations between SENSE perception scores and community college students’ grade point averages, fall to fall retention, semester credit hours, course completion for developmental and college gateway courses, and degree and certificate completion were calculated. Although no strong correlations were observed, the SENSE may be useful to community colleges seeking to increase completion rates. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc699936/
Differences in Experiences and Outcomes of Transfer and Native Students in an Elementary Education Program: an Exploratory Study
This research targeted elementary education graduates of a large Southwestern university who were transfer students, and compared them to native students on selected variables. These variables included retention in teaching, and perception of supports and obstacles at the university. The sample consisted of 143 respondents: 73 native and 70 transfer students. Data were collected through submission of online surveys and through postal mail. Quantitative and qualitative analyses were used to answer the research questions. Astin’s input-environment-outcome model provided the conceptual and theoretical framework for this study. Native and transfer students considered student teaching to be the “most helpful” course or service during their time at the university, yet both felt they lacked elements of preparation for teaching in the real world. Transfer students reported the following as supports during their transition from community college to university: academic advising, finances, support network, and the university. They reported these obstacles: university bureaucracy, credit transfer, expenses, and adapting to campus. There was no significant difference between the two groups’ intentions to remain in teaching (p = .249), and a statistically non-significant higher percentage of transfer students than native students reported to be teaching at the time of survey completion (p = .614). The findings support further inquiry into support systems for transfer students, as well as further examination of teacher preparation curricula. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149677/
Does Campus Type Really Matter? National Patterns of Alumni Giving in the 2008 Voluntary Support of Education Study
This quantitative study utilized secondary data furnished by 652 institutions of higher education which participated in the 2008 Voluntary Support of Education (VSE) national study managed by the Council for Aid to Education. This study investigated the relationships among private and public status across baccalaureate, masters and doctoral degree typologies and total alumni giving, restricted giving and unrestricted giving per full time equivalent (FTE) for the 2007/08 academic year. The independent variable included the three degree-granting sub-categories of institution as categorized by either public or private status. The dependent variables included total computed alumni giving for 2008 per FTE, restricted alumni giving for 2008 per FTE and unrestricted giving by alumni for 2008 per FTE. ANOVA main effects were calculated and statistical significance determined using the &#945; < .05 level. Tukey Post-Hoc calculations were computed and Cohen's f 2 was used to determine effect sizes. Total alumni giving per student FTE differed at statistical significance across the six institution types, F (5, 651) = 37.181, p < .001, f 2 = .29. Total restricted giving per student FTE differed at statistical significance across the six types, F (5, 651) = 28.90, p < .001, f 2 = .22. Total unrestricted giving per student FTE differed at statistical significance across the six types, F (5, 651) = 35.371, p < .001, f 2 = .27. This study's restricted giving index documents alumni make differentiated choices concerning gifts based on institution type. Recommendations are issued for further research and professional practice. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc68045/
Early Predictors of Early Freshman Year Attrition in Female Hispanic Students
The Texas Hispanic population is projected to grow to 18.8 million, almost tripling its number within the state, in only 30 years. This rapid growth is a concern for Texas higher education because this group has traditionally been under-represented in colleges and universities. Also, according to national, state, and local data, Hispanic students are retained at a lower rate than are other ethnic groups. Because of lower retention rates for Hispanic students and because the majority of Hispanic college students are female, an increasing number of Hispanic women are heads of households. Studying the attrition rates of Hispanic females could provide a better understanding of how the state can improve both the participation and retention rates of this population. This study utilized descriptive statistics and regression analysis to identify the correlations between and among the dependent variable of attrition and independent variables derived from (1) pre-college survey responses measuring college expectations and (2) early-first semester survey responses measuring actual college experience. Institutional data were used to confirm enrollment status at the beginning of the second semester. The sample of the study was all female, full-time, first-time-in college student survey respondents attending a public 4-year institution in Texas. This number included Hispanic females (n = 176), Caucasian females (n = 278), and African American females (n = 209). Although not a focus of the study, Caucasian and African American females were included to enhance the understanding of Hispanic females’ responses. The dependent variable of attrition in college attendance for Hispanic females correlated negatively with each two independent variables: (1) joining one or more campus organizations (r = -.252, p = 0.045) and (2) campus social life providing many opportunities for participation (r = -.272, p = 0.030). The dependent variable correlated positively with one independent variable, satisfaction with academic progress at the end of the freshman year (r = .301, p = 0.016). To have a positive impact on the attrition rates of Hispanic females, educators at Texas institutions of higher education must better understand Hispanic females’ college expectations. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103396/
An Educational Intervention to Promote Self-management and Professional Socialization in Graduate Nurse Anesthesia Students
Traditionally, nurse anesthesia educators have utilized prior academic achievement to predict student success. However, research has indicated that prior academic achievement offers an inadequate assessment of student success in graduate healthcare programs with extensive clinical residencies. The educational literature has identified many non-cognitive factors, such as self-efficacy and locus of control, that may provide a more holistic prediction model of student success. An experimental study with pretest-posttest design and stratified random assignment was conducted to evaluate the effectiveness of an educational intervention to promote self-management, professional socialization, and academic achievement among first semester graduate nurse anesthesia students. Participants (N = 66) were demographically similar to the national graduate nurse anesthesia student body, though Hispanics and younger students were a little over-represented in the sample (56% female, 75.8% White, 15.2% Hispanic, 6% Other, 59% ≤ 30-years-old, 67% ≤ 3 years of ICU). The results showed that most graduate anesthesia students had strong self-management and professional socialization characteristics on admission. The results did not support the effectiveness of this educational intervention. Thus, ceiling effect may have accounted in part for statistically non-significant results regarding self-efficacy (p = .190, ω2 = .03), locus of control (p = .137, ω2 = .04), professional socialization (p = .819, ω2 = .001), and academic achievement (p = .689, ω2 = .003). Future researchers may need to expand the scope of the intervention, use a more powerful and sensitive instrument, and utilize a larger sample. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc822767/
An Essential Academic Program: A Case Study of the General Studies Program at Louisiana State University in Shreveport
The purpose of this study was to provide a historical overview of the development of the General Studies (GS) program at LSU Shreveport from its inception in 1967 until 2007. Sources of data were primary, secondary, and archival documents, student information accessed through the university mainframe, alumni information obtained from a university-sponsored directory, and an interview with the former vice-chancellor of academic affairs. All data were analyzed and placed in a chronological framework. The resulting framework consisted of dividing the 40 years of program existence into four ten-year periods. The study was limited in scope to the GS program at LSU Shreveport and did not seek to compare this program with other programs offered at the university or other GS programs in the state. The study results identified several key social, economic, and political factors that influenced the program’s development. Political factors included the change from a two-year to a four-year institution, the Statewide Review Committee recommendations of 1983, the dissolving of the College of General Studies in 1984, and the accountability movement of the 1990s. Key social factors discovered were the Civil Rights and Women’s Movements of the 1960s,and progressive, life adjustment, and humanistic educational philosophies. Economic factors revealed were the economic recessions of the 1970s and 2007, the technology burst of the 90s,and the current War on Terror. The study also revealed that the GS program has fulfilled the directives of the 1983 Statewide Review Committee Recommendations. Recommendations for future development of the program include adding an online option and implementing an exit survey. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84246/
Establishing Junior-level Colleges in Developing Nations: a Site Selection Process Using Data From Uganda
This research synthesizes data and presents it using mapping software to help to identify potential site locations for community-centered higher education alternatives and more traditional junior-level colleges in Uganda. What factors can be used to quantify one site over another for the location of such an institution and if these factors can be isolated; why should they be used by local authorities? the variables are secured from the Southern and Eastern Africa Consortium for Monitoring Educational Quality (SACMEQ), Afrobarometer, census data, as well as technology reports and surveys. These variables are reduced, grouped and mapped to help determine the best location for a junior-level college. the use of local expert opinion on geopolitical, economic, and educational situations can be interfaced with the database data to identify potential sites for junior-level colleges with the potential to reduce the failure rate of such post-secondary school ventures. These data are analyzed in the context of reported higher education policies and outcomes from the national ministries, United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), quality assurances agencies in the region, the World Bank, and national datasets. the final product is a model and tool that can be used by local experts to better select future sites to expand higher education, especially in rural areas in the least developed countries. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115098/
Evaluation Practices of Community College Faculty Development Programs
The purpose of this quantitative study was to determine the current state of community college faculty development program evaluation and identify possible influences on evaluation practices. Data from 184 survey responses and the Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) were analyzed to answer three research questions. Multiple regression was used to determine if a relationship existed between the dependent/outcome variable (evaluation utilization score) and the independent/predictor variable (accrediting agency affiliation: MSCHE, NEASC, NCA, NWCCU, SACS, and WASC) and/or control variables (institution locale, student FTE, expenses per student FTE, percent spent on instruction, and percent of full-time faculty). Results were not statistically significant, F (12, 163) = 1.176, p = .305. The mean evaluation scores were similar for all six accrediting agencies ranging from 60-69. The rural variable was statistically significant with p = .003 and alpha = .05, but it only accounted for 3.6% of the variance explained. Logistic regression was used to determine if a relationship existed between the dependent/outcome variable (use of evaluation) and the above-specified independent/predictor variable and/or control variables for six faculty development program activities. Results revealed that significant predictor variables for the use of evaluation vary based on the faculty development program activity. Statistically significant predictors were identified for two of the six activities. The percent spent on instruction variable was statistically significant for financial support for attending professional conferences (p = .02; alpha = .05). The NCA affiliation and student FTE variables were statistically significant for orientation for new faculty (p = .007; alpha = .05 and p = .027; alpha = .05 respectively). The analysis of the evaluation methods was conducted using descriptive statistics and frequencies. The most frequently used evaluation methods were questionnaire and verbal feedback. NCA was identified as having the greatest number of institutions using the most frequently used evaluation methods for four of the activities. SACS was identified as having the largest number of institutions using the greatest number of evaluation methods for five of the activities. It was discovered that accrediting agencies with policies regarding faculty development program evaluation practices were not more likely to have higher evaluation utilization scores or utilize evaluation methods more frequently than accrediting agencies without such policies. The study revealed that among community college faculty development programs evaluation practice similarities were more prevalent than differences regardless of accrediting agency affiliation. As a result of this discovery, future research should extend beyond the accrediting agency affiliation emphasis and explore additional influences on institutional decision making processes regarding community college faculty development program evaluation practices. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc699864/
Examining Self-efficacy in Community College Adjunct Faculty
Though professional development interventions are widespread in higher education, administrators often do not formally assess their effectiveness, particularly in relation to teacher self-efficacy. The purposes of this study were to determine if any statistically significant difference existed between the self-efficacy scores of adjunct faculty participants in a community college’s professional development program and nonparticipants and to identify the variables with a statistically significant relationship with self-efficacy. A modified version of the Teachers’ Sense of Efficacy Scale (TSES) was administered to 21 adjunct faculty participants in Lone Star College’s Adjunct Certification Program (ACP) and 312 adjunct faculty not currently participating in the program. A demographic questionnaire development by the researcher was also administered. Independent variables of the demographic questionnaire included gender, ethnicity, age, K-12 teaching experience, highest degree earned, subject taught, years of college teaching experience, and number of courses taught each semester. Paired t-test results indicated statistically significant differences in Efficacy in Instructional Strategies for adjunct participants in the ACP program. No significant differences were found for Efficacy in Student Engagement and Efficacy in Classroom Management. Multiple regression analyses indicated that gender has a statistically significant relationship to Efficacy Instructional Strategies. A statistically significant relationship was found for race for Efficacy in Classroom Management. Finally, analysis also indicated a positive relationship between race and gender for Efficacy in Student Engagement. No other statistically significant relationships were found across the other demographic variables. Findings of this study revealed that the ACP increased teacher self-efficacy across two of the three dimensions of the TSES indicating that the professional development intervention had a positive effect on the efficacy of its participants. The present study contributes to the research on teacher self-efficacy, adjunct faculty and professional development interventions. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc801926/
Examining the Engagement of Transfer Students in Texas Universities
The success of transfer students plays a critical role in improving the baccalaureate attainment rates of undergraduates attending 4-year higher education institutions in Texas; however, current indicators suggest transfer students have lower persistence and graduation rates relative to students who begin and complete their college education at one university (i.e., non-transfer students). Additionally, the research literature indicates a link between degree completion and engagement; however, transfer students are reported to be less engaged and less likely to persist than their counterparts. This quantitative study compared the engagement experiences of 2-year transfers, 4-year transfers, swirl transfer, and non-transfers by using National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) 2008 data to determine if there are any differences among these groups, and if these differences persist after controlling for individual and institutional covariates. the sample consisted of 2,000 seniors attending 4-year higher education institutions in Texas. the engagement scores of each group were compared using a multivariate analysis (MANOVA). This study found non-transfers were more engaged than each type of transfer student on Student-Faculty Interaction and Supportive Campus Environment factors; moreover, these differences generally persisted after controlling for residence, enrollment status, and institutional control (i.e., public vs. private).The data indicated no difference among the three transfer sub-groups for any of the engagement variables, which suggests their engagement experiences were similar. This research suggests that efforts to increase the participation and success rates of Texans, particularly those described as transfers, may be informed by how students perceive their engagement experiences; consequently, institutions may consider modifying and implementing policies that promote student participation in educationally purposeful activities leading to persistence and graduation. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc115077/
An Exploratory Study of Students' Use of Facebook and Other Communication Modalities in Order to Receive Student Affairs Information
This qualitative study explored Facebook as a communication tool for student affairs and compared it as a source with other communication modalities to describe the 18-24 year old student preference on receiving information about student affairs departments and activities. The research questions were designed to provide feedback on the current purpose[s] of student use of Facebook for student affairs services as well as reporting additional services and activities that would be considered through the use of Facebook. Differences in use among institutional types were also explored. The results of 395 online survey responses were compared to focus groups consisting of student ambassadors at a two-year public, four-year private, and four-year public institution. The online survey participants were asked to respond to specific modes of communication based upon each service or activity. The focus groups were asked the same questions in an open-ended format and the results were compared to the online results. The results indicate that depending on the event or activity, the students preferred a different method of communication, not necessarily Facebook for information on student affairs programming. These results also differed among institutional types. Two-year institutions have the greatest potential to increase their presence on Facebook. One theme that emerged from the open-ended response question in the online survey was that institutions participating on Facebook should limit content so that it is more social in nature and leave academically related issues to institutionally driven communication modalities. There are numerous options to communicate information to students and finding the best one may be more challenging than actually disseminating the information. With the administrative challenges and lack of student responses encouraging Facebook usage, institutions of higher education are not encouraged to spend enormous resources in this one particular communication modality. Given the high number of responses from the online survey combined with feedback from the focus groups, enhanced email options or web portal content might serve the current needs. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc67992/
An Exploratory Study of the Impact of Institutional Policies and Practices of Community and Technical Colleges in Texas on Student Persistence in Online Courses
Online education is the fastest growing form of course delivery of higher education in the United States. It has revolutionized how students and instructors interact in the educational process. Yet students in online courses continue to experience higher attrition rates than their counterparts in traditional face-to-face classes despite the advantages offered by the technology. This study examined the impact that institutional policies and practices at community colleges in the state of Texas have had on student persistence in online courses. It also examined how institutions collect and use data in addressing students' attrition. The findings were used to identify the most effective institutional practices to share with community college systems in Texas in an effort to improve student persistence in online courses across the state. The population for the study consisted of the 50 public two-year community college and the technical college systems in the state of Texas. The study used a mixed method. A theoretical model of institutional impact on online persistence was drawn from the literature review. This model's five categories were then used to construct a survey to collect data on institutional practices and measure the effectiveness in addressing student persistence. Four college systems were identified using the survey data that best met the five categories. Interviews were then conducted at these four college systems to produce case studies of these institutions' practices and experiences with online persistence. The results highlighted the roles that institutions play in promoting student persistence in online programs. They revealed differences in the ways institutions define and track student success in online programs and the difficulty these differences pose in comparatively evaluating various institutions' programs. Results lent support to the theoretical model of institutional impact on online persistence that was developed for this study, and results yielded a proposed list of promising practices to enhance student persistence in online programs in public two-year community and technical colleges. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc33165/
Exploring Hidden Student Perceptions About College-going Culture At House Bill 400 Schools In The Dallas Fort Worth Metroplex
In accordance with the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Boards’ Closing the Gaps by 2015, this research study analyzed self-reported perceptions about college-going culture from students (n = 151) who attended four House Bill 400 schools serving Latino and African American communities in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. This study utilized exploratory factor analysis (EFA) with a maximum likelihood extraction technique to identify hidden perceptions (latent factors) that account for common variance among student perceptions about college-going culture. The study also tested the validity and inter-item reliability of the 15-item College-Going Culture Survey used in data collection. The parallel analysis, EFA, and Cronbach’s ? identified two latent factors of Verified College Potential (? = .70) and College Capital Awareness (? = .71) that, together, explained 40.1% of students’ perceptions. The two factors were non-significantly negatively correlated (r = -.495, p = .354). By utilizing the two latent constructs, a 10-item revised College-Going Culture Survey is recommended to improve the inter-item reliability coefficient from ? = .46 to ? = .77. Descriptive statistics revealed that Latino and African-American students affirmed aspects of the college-going culture at HB 400 schools. However, latent factors suggest the possibility that students who reportedly feel most encouraged to attend college (Verified College Potential) may tend to be least aware of the actual logistics of college such as admissions processes and financial aid (College Capital Awareness) and that, conversely, those with the most logistical knowledge may tend to feel least encouraged. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103410/
Exploring Student Learning on a Short-term, Faculty-led Study Abroad Course Through a Student Development Lens
Embarking on a study abroad experience is thought to be a transformational experience for students, and previous researchers have tended to find that the potential benefits of study abroad experiences, including greater conceptual and behavioral intercultural competence, are greater with longer periods abroad. The purpose of this study was to create an intentional learning experience for students who embarked on a short-term study abroad in rural areas of China and to apply faculty intervention of a student development approach to student learning to create a high-impact learning environment for students centered on a service-learning project. This qualitative study gathered primary data from students and instructors during the course through a collection of observation and field notes, student journals, pre- and post-construct tests, and final presentation. Follow-up interviews were conducted 10 months after course completion. Six students participated in this course and study who were from a variety of disciplines and classifications. Five students were female; one was male. Four students were undergraduates; two were graduate students. Student ethnicities included three Caucasians and African American, along with two international students from Mexico and Iran. Key outcomes of this study were that when short-term study abroad faculty members applied creative interventions, students were transformed with regard to their beliefs, perspectives, and behaviors and that when they guided students through a process of reflection and analysis, students exhibited exponential personal development. In addition, the ability to challenge or support students in reaching higher levels of personal development is a privilege that faculty must earn over time and through an authentic demonstration of care for students’ wellbeing. Short-term study abroad faculty members can use the results of this study to maximize the developmental impact of such programs on student participants. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc822773/
Exploring the College Pathways of Asian American Community College Students and the Model Minority Myth
Contrary to the model minority myth that portrays Asian Americans as academic all-stars over-represented in elite four-year institutions, half of all Asian American college students do in fact attend community colleges, and many experience myriad challenges. This exploratory study investigated the community college pathways of Asian American community college students, the role of family and culture in shaping expectations for higher education, and participants’ perceptions of the model minority myth and the degree to which this myth influenced their college experiences. Institutional practices and policies, or lack thereof, that support the success of this highly diverse population were also studied. Purposeful sampling was used to gather a sample of 28 students, who self-identified as Asian American and attended one of the three largest community college districts located in North Texas. The sample included 16 males and 12 females, whose ages ranged from 18 to 49 years old, with a mean age of 24. Data collection involved a demographic questionnaire and semi-structured individual interviews. The participants represented 13 different ethnicities, and nine were members of more than one ethnic or racial group. Ten participants were foreign-born citizens, and all of the participants had at least one foreign-born parent. Qualitative data provided description rich information that shed light on the expectations, experiences, and views of Asian American community college students, a virtually unstudied population. Consistent with current literature on Asian American college students, the findings suggest many Asian American community college students struggle with tremendous cultural and familial pressures for succeeding academically, and many described their experiences with racial microaggressions related to model minority stereotypes that they perceived their peers and instructors to have held. Recommendations for policy and practice designed to improve educational outcomes for Asian American community college students are addressed. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc799483/
Faculty Research Productivity at Addis Ababa University
This study explores the research productivity of Addis Ababa University (AAU) faculty. AAU was established in 1950 and is the oldest modern higher educational institution in Ethiopia. Recently AAU took steps to transform itself to become a pre-eminent African research university. One of the characteristics of a research university is the focus on the amount of research conducted by the institution's faculty. Academic institutions measure research productivity primarily based on published work. The purpose of this study was to analyze the research productivity of AAU faculty, and to examine the differential predictive effects of individual and environmental variables on faculty research productivity. This quantitative study used a theoretical framework and instrument, Faculty at Work. Four hundred questionnaires were distributed to Addis AAU faculty in person and 298 questionnaires were returned resulting in a 74.5% response rate. After exclusion of 12 cases with missing information, 286 cases (71.5% response rate) were analyzed. Most of the respondents were men (M = 92.1%, F = 7.9%). The average age of AAU faculty was 44. A hierarchical multiple regression was used to examine the ability of six sets of independent variables (sociodemographic, career, self-knowledge, social knowledge, behavior, and environmental response) to predict research productivity (publication output). Results indicated that there are productive researchers at AAU, and the theoretical framework explained 67.6% of the variance in publication output. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc67945/
From Aspiration to Attainment: African American Community College Transfer Student Experiences Through Baccalaureate Degree Attainment
The purpose of this dissertation was to explore African American community college transfer student experiences through baccalaureate degree completion. The current study used qualitative methods to examine the experiences and perceptions of eighteen African American community college transfer students who recently graduated or were within 30 credit hours of graduating from a four-year university in Texas. Ten female and eight male students, ranging in age from 21 to 56 years old, with an average age of 28, composed the sample. Data were collected through semi-structured interviews which were transcribed and analyzed based on an integrated conceptual model of Padilla’s (1999) Model of Minority Student Success and Yosso’s (2005) Community Cultural Wealth Model. Findings suggest that African American community college transfer student experiences are very similar to transfer student experiences revealed in current literature. However, findings indicate students perceive their experiences differ from student of other races/ethnicities when dealing with negative stereotypes, lack of role models, and racial bias. Findings also suggest African American community college transfer student persist by employing transfer student capital, familial, aspirational, and resistant capital to learn how the traverse transfer, transition, and persistence through baccalaureate degree attainment. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc407745/
The Full Range Advising Experience: an Assessment of College Academic Advisors’ Self-perceived Leadership Styles
The purpose of this quantitative, descriptive study was to identify the self-perceived leadership styles of college academic advisors and to explore the variance in the perceived leadership styles based on demographic information such as academic advising approaches, institutional type, age, years of experience, and gender. Participants were 225 college advisors from among 5,066 members of the National Academic Advising Association (NACADA) during the 2013-2014 academic year who met study criteria and whose email invitation to complete an online survey was presumably delivered, rendering a 4.44% response rate. The Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire Version 5X (MLQ 5X) with five supplemental questions was used for data collection The composite score for leadership style served as the dependent variable, and advising approach, institutional type, age, years of experience, and gender served as the independent variables for the study. Descriptive statistics, frequency distribution, and a factorial analysis of variance (ANOVA) were used for data analysis. The descriptive statistics for this study revealed that college academic advisors represent all points along the entire spectrum of the Full Range Model of Leadership continuum employing different leadership behaviors based on the situation. The descriptive data were supported by the frequency distributions per case which identified transformational leadership as the perceived dominant leadership style for the college academic advisors in this study. A priori to conducting the factorial ANOVA, Leneve’s test for homogeneity of variance indicated a statistically significant coefficient, thus violating the assumption of data normality and rendering the ANOVA findings uninterpretable. An implication of this study is that transformational leadership is the most desired leadership style of the Full Range Model of Leadership for college academic advisors. If this is true, professional development activities for college academic advisors should focus on strengthening transformational leadership behaviors/techniques including with whom and when this leadership style should be employed compared to the other Full Range Model of Leadership styles digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc804934/
The Generational Shift: an Exploration of Leadership Behaviors of Senior Student Affairs Officers Through a Generational Lens
The purpose of this quantitative study was to identify and compare differences in leadership behaviors of senior student affairs officers (SSAOs) based on their generational cohort (Baby Boomer, Generation X, Millennial). The Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ) was used to measure nine leadership behaviors and three leadership outcomes. Surveys were administered electronically to 3,361 individuals identified as a chief student affairs officer or director of student affairs in the Higher Education Online Directory (2014). The 449 respondents included 246 Baby Boomers, 192 Generation Xers, and 11 Millennials. Due to an uneven sample size, the Millennial group was removed from the data analysis. The total respondents consisted of 215 male and 219 female SSAOs with 260 employed at four-year private institutions and 170 employed at four-year public institutions. A MANOVA was utilized to determine whether or not statistical differences existed between the nine dependent variables (leadership behaviors) and independent group variables (generational group). The findings showed that whereas Generation X SSAOs exhibited more transactional leadership behaviors, Baby Boomer SSAOs were more transformational. The results of this study have implications for the field of student affairs in that research and practice support the need for more transformational leaders in senior administrative positions in higher education. If Generation X SSAOs who represent the next generation of administrators are more transactional in their leadership, college presidents and professional associations may need to develop a new, more transformational generation of SSAOs to replace Baby Boomers as they retire. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc804938/
A Guide to Arranging Late Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth Century Harmoniemusik in an Historical Style
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The system of higher education in the United States of America has retained some of its original character yet it has also grown in many ways. Among the contemporary priorities of colleges and universities are undergraduate student learning outcomes and success along with a growing focus on diversity. As a result, there has been a growing focus on ways to achieve compositional diversity and a greater sense of inclusion with meaningful advances through better access and resources for individuals from non-dominant populations. The clearest result of these advances for sexual and gender diversity has been a normalization of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) identities through positive visibility and greater acceptance on campus. However, it appears that relatively few institutions have focused on improving academic diversity and students’ cognitive growth around LGBTQ issues. Through historical inquiry and a qualitative approach, this study explored the fundamental aspects of formal LGBTQ studies academic programs at some of the leading American research universities, including Cornell University, the University of Maryland, College Park, and the University of Texas at Austin – a purposeful sample chosen from the Association of American Universities (AAU) member institutions with organized curricula focused on the study of sexual and gender diversity. The analysis of primary and secondary sources, including documents and interviews, helped create historical narratives that revealed: a cultural shift was necessary to launch a formal academic program in LGBTQ studies; this formalization of LGBTQ studies programs has been part of the larger effort to improve the campus climate for sexual and gender diversity; and there has been a common pattern to the administration and operation of LGBTQ studies. Clearly, the research shows that LGBTQ studies, as a field of study and formal curriculum, has become institutionalized at the American research university. A key outcome of this research is the creation of a historiography of curricular development around sexual and gender diversity at a sample of premier research universities. This work also begins to fill the gap in the study of academic affairs at the postsecondary level of education related to LGBT and queer studies and the organization and administration of learning about diversity and inclusion. Ultimately, the results of this study can influence the continued advancement and maturity of this legitimate field of study as well as academic diversity and social transformation around sexual and gender diversity. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc804893/
Higher Education and Native Nation Building: Using a Human Capital Framework to Explore the Role of Postsecondary Education in Tribal Economic Development
Native American Nations have perpetually had the highest rates of poverty and unemployment and the lowest per capita income of any ethnic population in the United States. Additionally, American Indian students have the highest high school dropout rates and lowest academic performance rates as well as the lowest college admission and retention rates in the nation. As Native Nations try to reverse these trends through sustainable economic development, they must do so with a limited number of educated, skilled workers in their own communities and with a complicated relationship with higher education that obstructs their ability to create a viable work force. This qualitative study proposed to research American Indian postsecondary access within the context of Native nations’ sovereignty and their social and economic development. Utilizing a theoretical framework of human capital and its role in rebuilding Native American economies, interviews were conducted with 19 education informants representing federally-recognized tribes in the Southern Plains Region. Major themes included financial issues related to college going in Native populations, familial and community influences, academic readiness, curricular development and delivery, the role of higher education in preparing students for tribal employment, and tribal economic development. Increasing Native American college student success and preparation for tribal employment requires collaboration between the sovereign nations and postsecondary entities that serve their populations. Ultimately, tribes will benefit from developing, or continuing to develop, a culture of college going in their communities, educational institution partnerships that create support services for their students, and curriculum to support the training of future tribal leaders. This study reinforces the importance of human capital in economic development for tribes and highlights the critical role that higher education can play in preparing American Indian students to serve their tribes. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc149637/
The Historical Development of Tertiary Education in the Bahamas: The College of the Bahamas, Past, Present, and Future.
The purpose of this study was to provide a historical overview of the development of the College of the Bahamas, and to examine the development of the College of the Bahamas in light of the College of the Bahamas Act of 1974 and the subsequent Act of 1995. The research was qualitative in nature using historical analysis. The primary means of investigation were analyses of both primary and secondary documents and interviews with key individuals who were important to the development of the College of the Bahamas since the 1960s. The methods of triangulation of data and findings were complemented by member checks to affirm the basic findings of the study. The study was limited in scope to the College of the Bahamas to the exclusion of other tertiary institutions within the country. The College of the Bahamas has advanced greatly and has largely fulfilled the directives and goals of the Act of 1974 and is currently engaged in efforts to meet the goals of the Act of 1995. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc28409/
A Historical Study of the Paris Small Business Development Center in Paris, Texas: 1986-2006
This historical study chronicled events of the development and implementation of the Paris Small Business Development Center at Paris Junior College in Paris, Texas from 1986-2006. Data was collected from primary and secondary sources and oral histories through personal interviews. The analysis included a brief history of higher education and the service mission and situated the study in the broader context as an extension program in higher education. This study provided a brief history of the U.S. Small Business Administration and America’s Small Business Development Center Network as a background for the study. This study is significant to scholars in the field of higher education for a number of reasons. It provides a historical analysis of a service program that extends the college to the community and demonstrates higher education and its role in economic development. It adds to the current body of research by advancing an understanding of a past to contemporary knowledge. Finally, by integrating historical perspectives from multiple disciplines in higher education, what happened and the context in which it happened can be more fully appreciated. This study also contributes to practical knowledge as it deepens the understanding of significant events and processes that contributed to the success of an outreach program in higher education. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc699861/
The Influence of Classroom Community and Self-Directed Learning Readiness on Community College Student Successful Course Completion in Online Courses
The relationships between community college students’ sense of community, student self-directed learning readiness, and successful completion of online courses were investigated using a correlational research design. Rovai’s Classroom Community Scale was used to measure classroom community, and the Fisher Self-directed Learning Readiness Scale was used to measure self-directed learning readiness, including three subscales of self-management, desire for learning, and self-control. The study participants were 205 students (49 males, 156 females; 131 White, 39 Black, 15 Asian, 10 Latino, 10 Multi-racial, 1 Native American) taking online courses during a summer term at a Texas community college. The research hypotheses were tested using Pearson r correlation coefficients between each of the seven independent variables (student learning, connectedness, classroom community, self-management, desire for learning, self-control, and self-directed learning readiness) and student successful course completion data. Contrary to prior study results, no association was found between students’ sense of community in online courses and student successful course completion. Although statistically significant differences were found between successful course completion and self-management (r = .258), desire for learning (r = .162), and self-directed learning readiness (r = .184), effect sizes were small suggesting a lack of practical significance. Possible reasons for the outcome of this study differing from prior research include relatively shorter semester length (summer term) during which data were collected and relatively smaller sample size. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc84186/
Leadership Styles and Cultural Sensitivity of Department Chairs at Texas Public Universities
As the U.S. population diversifies, so do its higher education institutions. Leadership at these institutions should be prepared for this diversification of students, faculty, and staff. The purpose of this study was to gain greater knowledge about the leadership styles and cultural sensitivity of department chairs. Survey research was used to determine if department chairs’ leadership styles correlated with their cultural sensitivity. The target population was department chairs from public universities in the state of Texas. The survey was distributed to 406 randomly selected department chairs. The participants completed three measures: Leadership Behavior Description Questionnaire (LDBQ) for leadership style, the Intercultural Sensitivity Scale (ISS) for cultural sensitivity, and a demographic questionnaire (gender, age range, race/ethnicity, and years of service as department chair). The sample included 165 usable surveys (40% return rate). The department chairs were primarily male (72%), White (78%), and over 50 (71%) years of age. First, a statistically significant negative correlation (r = -.431, p < .0001) occurred between LBDQ overall scores and overall ISS scores: As chairs scored higher on leadership ability, they scored lower on intercultural sensitivity. Second, leadership style by demographic variable displayed mixed results. No significant difference was found for leadership style by age, gender, years of service, or region of service. For ethnicity, White participants scored significantly lower than Minority participants on the LBDQ scales of consideration (t [162] = -2.021, p = .045), structure (t [162] = -2.705, p = .008), and overall (t [162] = -2.864, p = .005). Minority participants might work more diligently to increase their leadership abilities based on their higher LDBQ scores. Third, findings on intercultural sensitivity by demographic variable were mixed. No statistical significance was observed between any of the ISS scales and age, gender, years of service, and region. For ethnicity, Minority participants’ scores showed significantly lower intercultural sensitivity than White participants scores on two of six ISS subscales: interaction enjoyment (t = -2.46, p = .015) and respect (t = 2.107, p = .037). It was concluded that the Minority and White department chairs’ leadership style and intercultural sensitivity differences could be due in part to differences in the chairs’ ethnic affiliations, associated cultural backgrounds, and views of dominant versus non-dominant cultures. Recommendations for study are included. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc499977/
Listening to the Freshman Voice: First-year Self-efficacy and College Expectations Based on High School Types
This quantitative study used Astin's I-E-O theory to explore the relationship between a college freshman's high school background and academic self-efficacy. The Beginning College Survey of Student Engagement was used to measure academic self-efficacy across four types of high schools. Student gender and precollege experiences (dual-credit and communication assertiveness) were used as control. A total of 15,400 first-year students were included in this study. An ANOVA was used to examine the differences between groups, and ordinary least-square analysis was used to study the factors that affect academic self-efficacy. Results showed statistically significant difference in academic self-efficacy between public and private religious high school graduates. Specifically, graduates of public high schools had statistically higher academic self-efficacy than graduates of private religious high schools (p < .001). Additionally, females and participants of dual-credit courses also tended to have higher academic self-efficacy. Finally, analysis revealed that a first-year student's communication confidence is highly correlated to their academic self-efficacy. Results confirm in-coming first-year students perceive higher education engagement differently based on traits attributed to their precollege experiences. Results point to criteria colleges may be able to use in identifying freshmen at risk for low academic self-efficacy and, therefore, for problems in retention and degree completion. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc271863/
Living-learning communities and ethnicity: A study on closing the achievement gap at Regional University
This quasi-experimental study examined the impact of living-learning communities on GPA and fall-to-fall retention rates for college freshmen at Regional University (RU). The specific focus of this study was the effect of these communities on students of different ethnic groups and on the potential of these communities to reduce the academic performance gap. RU was a small public university that offered both undergraduate and graduate degree programs. RU required all freshman students to live on campus in living-learning communities beginning with the 2007-2008 academic year. This study utilized the 343 student freshman cohort class of 2008 in the living-learning communities as the treatment group. This treatment group was compared against the 193 student freshman cohort class of 2008 living off campus and against the 643 student freshman cohort class of 2006 living on campus prior to the implementation of living-learning communities. In addition, the statistics were analyzed by ethnicity to examine the impact of these communities on White, Hispanic, African American, and Native American students and their ability to reduce the academic performance gap. The research revealed that the communities implemented at RU were not statistically significant at improving academic performance or at reducing the achievement gap. The results of this study were not consistent with the literature available on living-learning communities. Current research identifies six fundamental factors critical to the success of living-learning communities: positive working relationship between academic affairs and student affairs, involvement of faculty in the residence halls, appropriate funding, assessment strategies, university wide buy-in to implementing these communities, and commitment from institutional leadership. Examination of the inputs and processes on which these learning communities developed and operated indicated that the majority of these were not well developed to sustain these communities. The divergence of these findings from the literature may be attributed to key departures from the literature regarding the set-up and operation of these communities at RU. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc28393/
Marianismo and Community College Persistence: a Secondary Data Analysis of the Educational Longitudinal Study 2002
Hispanics represent the greatest U.S. population growth, yet Hispanic women are the least educated of all U.S. ethnic female groups and reflect the lowest college enrollment as a percent of their total population. Since nearly half of Hispanics enrolled in college are served by community colleges, this research sought to understand if marianismo, i.e., the cultural expectations that Hispanic women females must focus on caretaking and mothering while reflecting passivity, duty and honor, and self-sacrifice, might provide some explanation for the low levels of degree attainment among Hispanic female community college students compared to their female peers from all other ethnic groups. Marianismo was once a construct that limited the role of women to the home. However, today’s Hispanic female is expected to juggle home priorities along with other roles in which she may engage. These various role demands may influence Hispanic female college persistence and success. Using secondary data analysis of the national Educational Longitudinal Study 2002 (ELS), this study examined the relationship between marianismo and persistence (semester to semester enrollment) of Hispanic females (n = 368) enrolled in community colleges. To create a marianismo scale, 13 items were selected from the ELS and reviewed by individuals familiar with Hispanic culture and marianismo. Confirmatory factor analysis was then used to generate a reliable marianismo scale (Cronbach’s alpha = .82). Logistic regression revealed that of marianismo, socio-economic status, generational status, and high school GPA, only high school GPA was statistically significant for predicting persistence. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc700087/
Medical School Admissions Across Socioeconomic Groups: An Analysis Across Race Neutral and Race Sensitive Admissions Cycles
While the relationship between academic variables and admission into medical school has been well documented, the relationship between socioeconomic background and admission has not been extensively examined. In 2001, the Texas Legislature passed HB 1641, which allowed for the use of socioeconomic variables in the admission of graduate and professional school students. Additionally, the Grutter v. Bollinger decision in 2003 removed a prohibition on the use of race or ethnicity in the admission of students in the state of Texas. The study examined the role medical school admissions selectivity as it relates to the socioeconomic background during a race neutral admissions cycle in 2005 and a race sensitive admissions cycle in 2006. The results of data analysis found that in a race neutral admissions cycle socioeconomic background was a significant factor in the admission of applicants to medical school. However, it was not a significant factor for applicants from underrepresented minority groups. The analysis also found that socioeconomic background was a significant factor in the admission of applicants to medical school in a race sensitive admissions cycle as well. Finally, the study found that variances in selectivity led to differences in the socioeconomic makeup of entering students across different medical schools. From the data analyzed in this study, it can be argued admission to medical school is in agreement with the sociological literature in that parental socioeconomic status is positively related to academic opportunities for their offspring. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc28440/
Mentoring in Higher Education Music Study: Are Good Teachers Mentors?
This quantitative study examined the correlation between how college level music students rated their teachers on the Fowler/O'Gorman Mentor Functions Questionnaire and how they perceived two aspects of their private music lessons: 1) to what extent they perceived their relationship with their teachers as positive, and 2) to what extent they perceived their teachers as good. The respondents for this study were 295 undergraduate and graduate music majors studying at 5 private universities or music schools. Positive correlations were found between the scores on the Mentor Functions Questionnaire (MFQ) and good teachers and positive lesson experiences. No correlation was found between the existence of gender congruity or the lack of gender congruity and the mean score on the MFQ. Respondents reported differences among their teachers' behaviors (p < .05): Role Modeling and Coaching behavior were perceived at significantly higher levels than the other six mentoring behaviors, whereas Friendship and Advocacy behavior was found at significantly lower levels. The behaviors of Personal and Emotional Guidance, Career Development Facilitation, Strategies and Systems Advice, and Learning Facilitation were found at levels closer to the mean. When role modeling and coaching behavior are present, students perceive teachers as good and lessons as positive. It is not necessary to be friends with a student in order to provide a positive lesson experience. Fowler and O'Gorman's mentoring behaviors have implications for improving the mentoring of collegiate music students. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc30491/
Mentors' Perceptions of Online-Educated Principal Interns
This qualitative study centered on perceptions of the quality and effectiveness of online-educated principal interns from the viewpoint of principal mentors. Six current principals who have served as mentors to both online and traditionally educated principal interns were asked to name characteristics of successful interns, to discuss to what degree those characteristics have been observed in online-educated principal interns and to share their perceptions of the quality and effectiveness of online-educated interns. The individual interview responses were analyzed and interpreted using thematic analysis. Three overarching themes emerged through data analysis: (1) the importance of certain characteristics in predicting internship success; (2) the impact of program delivery method on principal intern effectiveness; and (3) the influence of perception and bias in hiring decisions. This study may provide a better understanding of the characteristics of successful interns to universities and colleges offering principal preparation programs, which may result in a better understanding of the elements of successful interns and productive internship experiences. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc849773/
A Mixed Method Analysis of Undergraduate Student-run Public Relations Firms on U.S. College Campuses
Student-run public relations firms are part of collegiate public relations pedagogy, and this study used a mixed-method approach to analyze such firms on U.S. campuses. A listing of campuses with student-run firms was created as part of this study. Through an online survey questionnaire, advisers from 55 of the 119 student-run firms provided data about firm characteristics and observations about student learning and career development. Multiple correspondence analyses was used to see if the firms grouped into clusters and somewhat aligned with previous research by Lee Bush in 2009. Firms clustered into four groups, with the fourth group representing a mix of the other three. One additional finding was that firm characteristics are more similar than dissimilar even when comparing firms of varying years in operation. Analysis of variance to compare characteristics between different types of firms revealed that one type of firm tended to employ students at a higher average number of hours per week (F = 6.61, eta squared=0.16) and one was more likely to be accredited by the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications (F = 3.71, eta squared=0.13). Advisers reported mostly positive reflections on observed transformations they see in their student workers and the value of the firm experience including how it helps students in post-graduation job attainment. Responses to a graduate questionnaire is included but, because of low response rate (N = 6), provided only cursory information. digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc30486/
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