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 Department: Department of Counseling and Higher Education
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.
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.
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.
Development of the Knowledge and Attitudes Toward Near-death Experiences Scale
The purpose of this study was to develop an instrument to measure healthcare professionals’ knowledge and attitudes about near-death experiences (NDEs) that would demonstrate acceptable psychometric properties. In consultation with a focus group of six NDE experts, I developed the 50-item Knowledge and Attitudes toward Near-Death Experiences Scale (KANDES), including the 24-item KANDES–Attitude subscale (KANDES-A) and the 26-item KANDES–Knowledge subscale (KANDES-K). Including a pilot administration in which feedback indicated no need for revision, a total of 256 professional and student counselors completed the KANDES. Separate reliability and validity analyses were conducted for each subscale. For the KANDES–A, Cronbach’s alpha was .909, and Pearson’s r for test-retest was .748, both indicating acceptable reliability. An exploratory factor analysis indicated four factors to retain and yielded a factor solution that explained 54.87% of the variance, an acceptable amount of variance to substantiate construct validity. For the KANDES–K, Cronbach’s alpha was .816, indicating acceptable reliability. For each of the scale’s three domains, Cronbach’s alpha was .816 for Domain 1: NDE Content, .817 for Domain 2: NDE Aftereffects, and .631 for Domain 3: Experiencer Characteristics, indicating acceptable reliability. Pearson’s r for test-retest on the total KANDES–K was .812, further demonstrating acceptable reliability.
The Transition Experience of Second Career Respiratory Faculty: a Phenomenological Study
This phenomenological study investigated the transition experiences of clinical respiratory therapists who pursued second careers as respiratory faculty. Situated Learning Theory and Workplace Learning Theory were the frameworks for interviews with 11 second career respiratory faculty who had taught fewer than five years in baccalaureate degree programs. The goal of this study was to identify the major themes of their experiences. Thematic analysis revealed five common experiences: under-preparation, challenges, overwhelmed feelings, personal responsibilities, and rewards. The common theoretical framework for all participants was the critical need to understand their communities of practice within their organizations. From this study, respiratory department chairs and administrators may better understand the challenges and needs of clinical therapists as they transition into faculty positions. Positive experiences such as improved orientations and continued effective faculty support may promote a more rewarding and long-term practice.
Doctoral Level Counseling Students’ Experiences and Perceptions of Learning in a Cohort Environment
Learning community literature supports the use of student cohorts to enhance learning through increased peer interaction and common course work. Researchers employed the qualitative method of phenomenography to identify various ways doctoral counseling students conceptualize and experience learning in a cohort over the course of a single academic year. Participants were all 10 members of a single southwestern U.S. university counseling program doctoral cohort of full-time students between 20 and 59 years of age with 5 members 20-29, 4 members 30-39, 1 member 50-59; 8 female, 2 male; 9 White non-Hispanic, 1 African-American. Data were transcripts from 30 one-hour interviews, three for each participant over the course of their first year of study. The research team that analyzed the data consisted of three advanced counseling program doctoral students, each with research methods coursework. Results revealed nine dynamic structural aspects of learning: dialogue, diversity, knowledge, motivation, support, shared experience, relationship development, interpersonal awareness, and conflict. Findings support the use of learning communities in doctoral level counselor education programs. Cohort members demonstrated increasing awareness of the potential learning benefits of cohort interaction and developed more in depth strategies over time to utilize the cohort to enhance learning. Future counselor educators may now with greater confidence design learning communities and curriculum to facilitate doctoral cohort development for optimal student interaction.
Effects and Mediation of Child-centered Play Therapy on Young Children Who Are Anxious
Anxiety is one of the most pervasive childhood disorders, with a poor prognosis if left untreated. Traditional methods of treating anxiety have been less effective with young children. Based on theoretical assumptions regarding the potential effectiveness of child-centered play therapy (CCPT) as a treatment approach, I sought to explore the effects and mediating factors of CCPT on young children with symptoms of anxiety. Fifty-three participants between the ages of 6 to 8 years old were recruited from four elementary schools, including 36 males and 17 females. Of participants, 11 were African American, 24 were Caucasian, 10 were Hispanic/Latino, one was Asian, and seven were biracial. Twenty-five participants were randomly assigned to an experimental group receiving a mean of 15 sessions of individual CCPT, and 28 participants were assigned to an 8-session active control group. Five factorial analyses of variance (ANOVA) were conducted applying an alpha level of .05 for interpretation of statistical significance and Cohen’s d to assess practical significance. ANOVA results indicated a statistically significant interaction with a large effect size on Total Anxiety score of the Revised Children’s Manifest Anxiety Scale-2nd edition (p = .013, d = .715). Subscale ANOVA results indicated a statistically significant interaction effect with large effect size on the Worry subscale (p = .006, d = .795), no statistically significant interaction on the Defensiveness subscale (p = .710, d = .110), no statistically significant interaction but moderate effect size on the Physiological subscale (p = .076, d = .506), and no statistically significant interaction but moderate effect size on the Social Anxiety subscale (p = .162, d = .398). Statistically significant differences with large practical effects were found in total anxiety and worry, suggesting that children who received CCPT decreased their overall levels of anxiety and worry whereas children who were in the active control group increased their levels of anxiety and worry. When examining differences in relationships between groups, the CCPT group relationship scores were significantly higher than the control group relationship scores, as reported by counselors. Although the groups were different in their relationships, the relationship was not considered a statistical mediator of anxiety due to the lack of correlation between relationship scores and outcome. Overall, children seemed to benefit from CCPT, and it may be considered a viable treatment for children who are anxious. Due to the lack of mediation of relationship found in this study, further research is encouraged to consider other mediating and/or moderating effects when attempting to investigate the therapeutic relationship as a mediator.
Congruence, Unconditional Positive Regard, and Empathic Understanding in Child-centered Play Therapy
The purpose of this study was to explore how the therapist-provided conditions of congruence, unconditional positive regard, and empathic understanding were experienced and conveyed in child-centered play therapy (CCPT). Although the therapist-provided conditions are considered essential to the therapeutic process in CCPT, a gap exists between child-centered theory and empirical exploration of the process and dynamics of these relational variables in CCPT. Due to the limited research in this area, a grounded theory approach was utilized to explore how the three variables emerge in CCPT. Participants included four advanced doctoral students, all Caucasian females with extensive training in CCPT, and 12 children ranging from 4 to 8 years of age receiving weekly, individual CCPT. One individual CCPT session was observed and video-recorded for each therapist-child dyad (n = 12). Following each observation, play therapists were interviewed regarding the observed play session (n = 12). During each interview, the researcher and therapist watched the recorded play session in its entirety and discussed noteworthy interactions between the child and therapist. The video-recorded play therapy sessions and therapist interviews were analyzed using a multiphasic, constant comparative method. Results of the analysis included a process-model of the therapist-provided conditions in CCPT, examples of play therapists’ internal experiences and external behaviors associated with the presence and absence of the therapist-provided conditions, and a model of the process play therapists utilize to respond to breaks and barriers to congruence, unconditional positive regard, empathic understanding, and unconditional positive self-regard in CCPT. Implications for clinical practice, training, supervision, and research are discussed.
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.
Si Se Puede: an Investigation of Factors Fostering Allied Health Graduate Degree Completion for Latinos/as
This study uncovers the experiences of Latinos/as in allied health graduate programs and provides vital information which may help increase the number of Latino/a healthcare providers. It focuses on the testimonios (life narratives) of 9 Latinos/as who graduated from allied health graduate programs. Academic resilience and community cultural wealth theories framed the study while testimonio methodology guided data collection. Alumni were interviewed about the personal experiences and educational journeys that led them to successfully complete graduate allied health degrees. Participants’ family background, educational history, personal and environmental factors were considered. Participants described learning about the value of education early in their lives in home and school settings. The interviews also revealed the importance of participants’ personal drive and desire to excel academically and professionally. Participants noted that the academic rigor and adjustment required to succeed in graduate allied health programs, combined with feelings of social isolation, made their transition to the graduate program challenging. Family and social networks were noted as the most supportive in regards to participants’ retention and success. Research implications include the use of methodologies and theoretical frameworks which focus on the voices and experiences of underrepresented students in the allied health professions. Implications for allied health schools include intentional recruitment of underrepresented student populations, the establishment of social support systems, student affairs offices, and the inclusion of social class, ethnicity, and cultural diversity as standards by which allied health schools are rated for accreditation and re-accreditation purposes.
The Effects of Adlerian Play Therapy on Maladaptive Perfectionism and Anxiety and in Children
I used singlecase A-B-A experimental design to examine the effectiveness of Adlerian play therapy (AdPT) for children identified with clinical levels of perfectionism on the Conners Parent Rating Scale-Revised and Conners Teacher Rating Scale-Revised. Participants were 2 children, a 10 year-old Hispanic male and a 7 year-old Caucasian female. To examine the effect of AdPT on maladaptive perfectionism and anxiety, the Child-Adolescent Perfectionism Scale and the Revised Children’s Manifest Anxiety Scale were administered to the children twice weekly over 3 phases of the study: baseline (6 administrations), intervention (12-16 administrations), and maintenance (6 administrations) for a total of 24 to 29 data points. Additionally, parents and teachers completed the Conners Rating Scales-Revised5 times: (1) prior to study, (2) following baseline/prior to treatment, (3) midpoint of treatment, (4) following treatment, and (5) following maintenance phase.During the intervention phase, the male and female participants attended 21 and 16 play therapy sessions, their mothers attended 6 and 5 parent consultations, and their teachers attended 6 and 3 teacher consultations, respectively. Analysis of the child self-report assessments indicated mixed and inconclusive results regarding the effects of AdPT on target behaviors. However, results of the parent and teacher reports indicated clinically significant reductionsin maladaptive perfectionism and anxiety over the five points of measurement for both participants. The participants’ maladaptive perfectionism moved from the clinical to the normal range. Implications for practice and future research are indicated.
Confirming the Constructs of the Child Interpersonal Relationship and Attitudes Assessment
The purpose of this study was to confirm the four-factor model of the Child Interpersonal Relationship and Attitudes Assessment (CIRAA) in order to establish the instrument’s factor/structure validity using a sample different than that used in instrument development. The CIRAA was the first parent-report instrument based on child-centered theory and designed to measure play therapy outcomes. Its four factors are Self-Regulation (formerly Self-Control), Interpersonal Relationships, Coping Skills, and Internal Locus of Evaluation. For this study, the CIRAA was administered to 206 parents; their children were 75 females and 131 males aged 3 to 10 years old. The distributions of children’s genders and ages in this study were similar to the distributions of the sample used to develop the CIRAA. Based on confirmatory factor analysis results of overall goodness-of-fit indices; localized areas of strain; and interpretability, size, and statistical significance (p < .001) of the model's parameter estimate, the four-factor model of the CIRAA was confirmed with both theoretical and empirical support. Internal consistency reliability for the subscales and total score were acceptable, with an overall reliability coefficient of .928. A medium negative correlation (r = -.417, n = 47, p < .01) was found between the CIRAA total scores and Child Behavior Checklist Total Problems scores, a result in the expected direction. All subscales and total scores, except the Internal Locus of Evaluation score, distinguished differences between non-clinical and clinical samples. Altogether, results indicated that the CIRAA is appropriate for making clinical decisions about individuals. Limitations, additional implications, and future research are discussed.
The Relationship of Counselor Education Program Applicants’ Cognitive Complexity to Other Admission Criteria
Counselor cognitive complexity is a counselor’s ability to recognize and organize multiple characteristics that might affect client needs. I examined whether various admissions criteria–Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Verbal, Quantitative, and Analytical Writing scores; previous coursework grade point averages; and faculty co-leaders’ admissions group interview ratings–for 182 applicants to a southwestern U.S. CACREP-accredited master’s counseling program predicted cognitive complexity scores on a modified Counselor Cognitions Questionnaire (CCQ). Participants were predominantly ages 20 to 30 years (91.8%), female (91.8%), and White (81.3%). Multiple regression analyses showed statistical significance with small effect sizes: the admissions criteria together significantly predicted cognitive complexity differentiation (p = .033), accounting for 6.6% of variance, and cognitive complexity integration (p = .003), accounting for 9.8% of variance. The small effect sizes and low variance percentages support the idea that cognitive complexity measured by the modified CCQ is a substantially different phenomenon from commonly-assessed academic aptitude and personality characteristics. If future researchers confirm these findings with additional samples, subsequent researchers could determine whether one or both domains of cognitive complexity, either alone or in combination with one or more of the commonly used admissions criteria, could help counselor educators better predict which applicants will be successful in master’s programs and the counseling field.
The Success Factors of African American Males in Master of Arts Teaching Programs
The problem of not enough African American males enrolling in masters level teaching programs was addressed in this study. This phenomenological study examined the experiences of African American males in master of arts teaching (MAT) programs to understand why they enrolled and what factors led to persistence throughout their program enrollment. Six African American males currently enrolled in MAT programs in the southern, southwestern, and western regions of the United States participated. Data gathered for each participant included an individual, semi-structured interview and a demographic survey. Audio-recordings were used to capture the fullness of the interviews, and transcription software was used to code, analyze, and sort the data to help identify themes. This study looked through the lens of Strayhorn’s graduate student persistence and Albert Bandura’s self-efficacy theories. Factors that influenced African American males to enroll into a program were (a) education as a necessary credential, (b) desire to give back to society, (c) minority scholarship support, (d) making a connection to passion, and (e) desire to enhance teaching skills. External and internal factors were identified as assisting the males to persist within their programs. Academic institutions and policy makers may find the results useful for understanding the unseen educational barriers likely to limit African American males from enrolling in MAT programs, the issues likely to occur during the process of obtaining the degree, and the factors likely to be assistive to them for achieving program completion.
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.
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.
Transfer Capital and Academic Planning: Facilitating Successful Two- to Four-year Transfer in North Texas
The study of transfer has been historically important and now approaches critical proportions. Current and historical patterns of enrollment and attainment in American higher education combined with the economic, demographic, political, and social realities of the 21st century drive the need for increased research and more effective practice for successful transfer of students from two- to four-year higher education institutions. An emerging theory for framing transfer success is transfer capital, which recommends academic planning, financial aid, and admissions advising as primary interventions to increase the rate and success of transfer. This mixed-methods study examined the academic planning portion of transfer capital to assess the effect of academic planning on the number of hours transferred, number of leveling courses needed, excess hours, and grade point average (GPA). Quantitative assessment measured differences among new transfer students enrolling between Spring 2012 and Fall 2013. Qualitative assessment was conducted with advisors and leadership that were part of the transfer advising program examined in this study. ANOVA indicated significant findings at the .05 level for each variable except GPA. Qualitative findings provided context and primary themes of institutional context, academic planning, financial aid knowledge, and institutional partnerships. Findings provide direction for practice as well as further research.
Confirming the Constructs of the Adlerian Personality Priority Assessment (Appa)
The primary purpose of this study was to confirm the four-factor structure of the 30-item Adlerian Personality Priority Assessment (APPA) using a split-sample cross-validation confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). The APPA is an assessment, grounded in Adlerian theory, used to conceptualize clients based on the four personality priorities most commonly used in the Adlerian literature: superiority, pleasing, control, and comfort. The secondary purpose of this study was to provide evidence for discriminant validity, examine predictive qualities of demographics, and explore the prevalence of the four priorities across demographics. For the cross validation CFA, I randomly divided the sample, 1210 undergraduates, at a large public research university (53% Caucasian, 13.1% Hispanic/Latino(a), 21.4% African American, 5.4% American Indian, and 5.8% biracial; mean age =19.8; 58.9% females), into two equal subsamples. I used Subsample 1 (n = 605) to conduct the initial CFA. I held out Subsample 2 (n = 605) to test any possible model changes resulting from Subsample 1 results and to provide further confirmation of the APPA's construct validity. Findings from the split-sample cross-validation CFA confirmed the four-factor structure of the APPA and provided support for the factorial/structure validity of the APPA's scores. Results also present initial evidence of discriminant validity and support the applicability of the instrument across demographics. Overall, these findings suggest Adlerian counselors can confidently use the APPA as a tool to conceptualize clients.
Student Experiences and Expectations Related to the Vertical Transfer Process From Two Feeder Community Colleges of a Senior Institution
The purpose of this study was to understand the experiences and expectations of community college students attending Temple College and Central Texas College regarding what they may expect as part of the vertical transfer process in order to improve the likelihood of their persistence to graduation at Texas A&M University-Central Texas (TAMUCT). The target population was approximately 700 students enrolled in two feeder Texas community colleges who had expressed intent to transfer to TAMUCT. The response rate was 19%, and 136 useable surveys were used for analysis. The sample was 74% female, 45% White with the majority minority. To assess the relationships between community college experiences and transfer expectation variables, correlations and logistic regression were used. No linear relationships were found regarding gender, age, ethnicity, highest level of parents' education, the aspirational variables of highest academic degree intend to obtain at any college or university and at TAMUCT, and the feeder community college attended and the two scales. A statistically significant relationship was found between parental income level and reported community college experiences (F(4, 79) = 2.612, p = .042) and vertical transfer expectations (F(4, 52) = 3.318, p = .017). Community college students from lower socioeconomic backgrounds may utilize the community college to upper-level institution vertical transfer pathway as a way to obtain an affordable baccalaureate degree. Community colleges and university administrators need to continue working together to establish unique and creative ways to create seamless transitions for vertical transfer students utilizing the community college to upper-level institution pathway to degree completion.
Resilience Among Middle School Students
Resilience is the ability to survive and persevere during difficult times. Resilient people also thrive after overcoming adversity. Adolescents have many developmental tasks to overcome in their quest to becoming adults. Difficulty with these tasks can lead to academic and personal failures. Adolescents with low resilience often struggle with low self-esteem. If students are identified early as having lower levels of resilience, professional school counselors have an opportunity to provide resilience-enhancing activities. Prior to middle school, students are assigned all of their classes. During middle school, students begin to select their elective courses which may be representative of their interests and current emotional status. By looking at students' elective courses, I looked for patterns of resilience that may help professional school counselors proactively identify students in need of additional guidance in order to be academically successful. This study utilized a convenience sample of middle school students enrolled in the 8th grade (N = 190) of a large suburban school district located in the southwest United States to measure levels of resilience and elective course enrollment. Gender of the participants was 107 females and 83 males. The students reported their ethnicity as 5.8% African American/Black, 11.1% Asian, 12.6% Hispanic, 1.1% Native American, 1.6% Pacific Islander, 59.5% Caucasian/White, and 8.4% multiracial. I measured resilience in this study using the Resilience Scale and comparisons based on elective course. Data analyses include descriptive statistics and ANOVAs. Based on a statistical significance criterion of p < .05, students enrolled in athletics scored significantly higher in resilience than did non-athletics students enrolled in physical education/outdoor education (p = .035). Additionally, Caucasian females were significantly less resilient than Caucasian males (p = .031). Limitations of the study, implications of the results for practice, and recommendations for future research are presented.
Adventure Based Counseling: Exploring the Impact of Abc on Adaptive Functioning in High School Males
The purpose of this study was to examine the impact of ABC on adaptive functioning in high school males. Specifically, a pretest/posttest, experimental design (N = 46; Caucasian = 26, Hispanic = 20) was used to examine the changes in adaptive and maladaptive functioning in ABC participants (n = 21) compared to those in a control/waitlist group (n = 25) as measured by the Behavior Assessment System for Children, second edition (BASC-2). Participants randomly assigned to the treatment group engaged in 10 ABC sessions. In order to better understand group process in ABC, I had experimental group participants complete the Group Climate Question Short form (GCQ-S) three times during the intervention. A mixed between/within subjects ANOVA of the BASC-2 scores revealed a statistically significant increase in adaptive functioning for both groups, F(1, 33) = 8.58, p < .01, with a partial eta squared of .21 indicating a large effect. There was no statistically significant difference between the experimental and control/waitlist groups, F(1, 33) = .064, p = .80, and a very small effect size (partial eta squared < .01). A repeated measures ANOVA of the GCQ-S scores revealed a statistically significant increase in engagement, F(2, 38) = 4.067, p = .025, with an eta squared of .21, indicating a large effect. Limitations of the study, implications of the results for practice, and recommendations for future research are presented.
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.
Motivating Factors for Philanthropy at a Ministry Preparation Graduate Institution
A qualitative case study was conducted to determine whether major donors to an institution of higher education that existed to prepare ministers and missionaries were perceived by the institution's leaders as motivated by organizational effectiveness, financial efficiency, or evaluations by donor watchdog agencies. The case study was conducted with the Graduate Institute of Applied Linguistics. The interview process was utilized to gain information individually from the president, a development consultant, an academic dean, and a former development director. Each participant was asked a series of 19 questions during the interview process. The results indicated that the leaders perceived that organizational effectiveness was a philanthropic motivator for major donors and measured it by the accomplishments of those who were trained at the institution. The results also indicated that the ministry preparation institution's leaders perceived financial efficiency to provide philanthropic motivation to major donors, though to a lesser degree than organizational effectiveness, and measured it by stewardship of funds. The results further indicated that the ministry preparation institution's leaders perceived that donor watchdog agency evaluations, specifically those of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability and Guidestar, provided philanthropic motivation for major donors. Additional research recommendations included studying how to report about organizational effectiveness in a manner meeting the needs of major donors and what motivates major donors of other education and nonprofit organizations, organizational effectiveness and/or financial efficiency.
Student Engagement As a Predictor of Intent to Persist Among Latino Students at Community Colleges in Texas
The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship of student-faculty interactions, student-staff interactions, and student-peer interactions of Latino students to their intent to persist toward graduation in community colleges in Texas. Parental educational level (for both mother and father), first generation status, gender, and English as a second language served as additional predictor variables. The existing data used for this investigation were collected by the Center for Community College Student Engagement and included longitudinal data from the years 2012, 2011, and 2010. Data from 12,488 randomly selected Latino students enrolled in Texas community colleges were obtained and used for the study. The research design method was non-experimental using extant data. To assess the relationships between student engagement variables and Latino student intent to persist, correlations and logistic regression were used. Though no relationship was found between intent to persist and student-faculty interactions (r = -.017, p = .066, n= 11,824) or student peer interactions, (r = -.012, p = .208, n = 11,766), a positive relationship was found between intent to persist and student-staff interaction (r = .048, p = .000, n = 10,794) with an extremely small effect size (r2 = .002). Among the variables of parental level of education, first generation college student status, gender, and English as a second language status, only mother's educational level emerged as a significant predictor for intent to persist, R2 = .048, ?2 (8, N = 7,862) = 62.606, p < .0001. The findings suggest the possibility that staff availability and accessibility is important for Latino student persistence. In order to retain Latino community college students, knowledgeable staff able to facilitate students' successful navigation of the educational system is recommended to be a part of the community college's student success strategies. In addition the findings regarding parental education indicate that community colleges would be well advised to offer programs that engage and include parents as students proceed toward achieving their academic goals.
Pilot of a Learning Management System to Enhance Counselors' Relational Qualities Through Mindfulness-based Practices
Mindfulness-based practices are associated with increased attentional qualities, improved self-focus styles, enhanced empathic understanding, and strengthened self-compassion, making these practices a viable addition to counselor training programs. However, current mindfulness training models are primarily designed for relief of psychological distress, stress reduction, and increased well-being rather than focused on enhancing therapeutic skills and require intensive time commitments that may present logistical difficulties for overburdened curricula and graduate students. This study piloted an on-line, eight-week mindfulness-based practices learning management system for counselors (MBLMS-C) with a specific focus on the cultivation of qualities associated with successful therapeutic relationships. Ten of forty-six recruited counseling master's students enrolled in their first basic skills course at a sample of accredited universities across the United States completed the exit survey. Data were analyzed using multivariate repeated measures analyses comparing pre- post- counselor relational qualities of mindfulness traits, empathy, self-focus style, and self-compassion. Results indicated no statistically significant difference with a partial ?2 = .73. What-if analyses (N = 30) indicated statistical significance may have been obtained given a larger sample. Variance was explained by increased self-compassion (partial ?2 = .34) and mindfulness traits (partial ?2 = .31) and decreased self-focus style rumination (partial ?2 = .23) and empathic personal distress (partial ?2 = .12). Changes were observed in the desired direction for self-focus style reflection and empathic perspective taking/empathic concern. Discussion includes a review of the findings including examination of participant feedback regarding training experience. Study limitations and implications for counselor education, professional enhancement, and suggestions for future research are also offered.
The Preparation of Academic Library Administrators
The purpose of this quantitative study was to determine the preparation methods experienced by academic library deans and which methods they perceived to be most valuable. Rosser, Johnsrud, and Heck (2000, 2003) defined the theoretical constructs of effective academic leadership upon which this study is based. The instrument—a modified version of Greicar's (2009) Professional Preparation of Academic Deans Questionnaire—was administered online. The population was the chief administrators of academic libraries in the United States; there were 749 usable responses for a 30.4% response rate. Respondents were primarily female (61.7%), White non-Hispanic (90.0%), and born in the United States (95.7%), with a mean age of 56.4 (5.9% < 40, 11.0% > 65). The largest minority group was Black, non-Hispanic (3.9%). Many respondents held multiple advanced degrees; 90.0% held an MLS, 45.8% held a subject master's, and 18.8% held a doctorate. The instrument measured academic library deans' perceived value of various preparatory methods (formal and informal mentoring, on the job training, conferences or seminars, advanced degrees beyond the MLS, and training programs). The methods were tested for perceived effectiveness with Rosser, Johnsrud, and Heck's (2000, 2003) theoretical constructs of academic leadership. Each preparation method was measured using eight item-level variables and summed to create a scale. Parametric analyses were used to examine scale-level variables and nonparametric analyses to evaluate item-level variables. On the job training was both the most commonly-experienced method (86.6%) and the most highly-valued (M = 24.97). Mentoring was a particularly important preparation method for female and minority deans. Female deans perceived informal mentoring to be significantly more valuable than did males, t(447) = -2.12, p < .05. Minorities rated formal and informal mentoring significantly higher than did non-minorities, t(114) = 2.73, p < .05; t(441) = 3.05, p < .05. Practical implications and future research are discussed.
Shifting Paradigms, Changing Fortunes: Fundraising at Makerere University
Fundraising for higher education is a recent phenomenon in Uganda where the government has supported education for decades. Recent structural adjustment and liberalization policies mandated by the World Bank and the IMF and internal financial exigencies have necessitated funding diversification in higher education in Uganda and increased the need for private financial support. In developed countries like the United States, Canada, and increasingly, the United Kingdom, private support from alumni, individuals, corporations, and other stakeholders is a key component of higher education funding. This study used qualitative methodology and a holistic case study research design to explore the fundraising function at Makerere University. Tierney's organizational culture conceptual framework was used and data were collected through semi-structured interviews, an alumni questionnaire, document analysis, and observations. The findings include a governance and management structure that does not adequately support the fundraising function, strategies that are adapted to suit the Ugandan cultural context, perceptions of corruption and lack of transparency; and internal conflicts that limit communication and damage the image of the institution. The findings show that Makerere University is not strategically capitalizing on its position as the oldest and largest public university in Uganda and the region to mobilize private support. Reforms addressing the issues and seeking to enhance student and alumni experiences are contributing to fundraising success in various units. The reform efforts include transitioning to a collegiate system, procuring enterprise- wide financial and student services systems, faculty and staff sensitization, outreach and community engagement. The focus on the vision, mission and operationalizing the strategic plan presents an opportunity to dialogue with stakeholders and resonates with potential donors. The findings highlight a renewed spirit of resourcefulness that leverages old paradigms to integrate economic, cultural and social contexts to proffer innovative models of funding diversification.
Effects of a Self-care Intervention for Counselors on Compassion Fatigue and Compassion Satisfaction
This study investigated the impact of a psychoeducational and experiential structured counselor self-care curriculum, developed by Drs. Charles and Kathleen Figley, on compassion fatigue and the prevention of professional impairment as measured by the Professional Quality of Life (ProQOL), Version 5. Volunteer licensed professional counselors, supervisors, and interns from four children's advocacy centers in Texas were assigned to treatment group (n = 21; 20 females, 1 male; mean age 34.4 years) or waitlist control group (n = 21; 19 females, 2 males; mean age 34.6 years). Participating counselors identified themselves ethnically as 64% Caucasian, 26% Hispanic, 7% African-American, and 2% Native-American. Employing a quasi-experimental design, three reliability-corrected analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) were utilized to analyze the data with an alpha level of .05 to assess statistical significance and partial eta squared to assess effect size. With pre-test scores as the covariate, results revealed in the experimental group a statistically significant reduction with large treatment effect for burnout (p = .01; partial ?2 = .15), a statistically nonsignificant reduction with a medium effect for secondary traumatic stress (p = .18; partial ?2 = .05), and a statistically nonsignificant increase with a medium effect for compassion satisfaction (p = .06; partial ?2= .09). Findings supported the use of this curriculum to train counselors on self-care as required of professional counselors by the American Counseling Association code of ethics and listed as a necessary skill in the standards of the Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs.
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.
Latino Students’ School Counseling Needs: an Exploratory Needs Assessment
The purpose of this study was to examine Latino/a student preferences for school counselor activities. The primary focus of research was to determine what school counseling activities Latino/a students perceived as important and which school counseling activities Latino/a high school students perceived as satisfying. The researcher pursued this purpose through administration of a survey instrument developed by the researcher. The instrument consisted of 14 demographic items and 42 5-point Likert scale items based on the domains described in the ASCA’s national model and current literature on experiences of Latino/a adolescents. The sample was comprised of 210 Latino/a high school students from five high schools in three school districts in the suburbs of a large Southwestern U.S. metroplex. The study population consisted of 94 female and 115 male participants ranging in age from 14 to 20 years old with the median age of 17.54 years. Overall, students preferred school counseling activities focusing on college and career readiness. According to the results of this study, students indicated that although they believed college and career activities to be important, they were not satisfied with how their school counselors provided those activities. Multiple regression analyses were utilized to determine which demographic variables were significant predictors of respondents’ perceptions of importance. Results indicated student perceptions of importance did not vary across grades, economic levels, genders, or cultural differences. The results, limitations, and suggestions for school counseling programs were provided within the report.
Transfer Rates of Texas Hispanic Community College Students to 4-Year Institutions: Selected Institutional Factors
The purpose of this non-experimental, quantitative study was to determine how well selected institutional characteristics explain the variance in Hispanic community college students’ transfer rates to 4-year institutions. Due to the rapidly growing Texas Hispanic population, understanding challenges to their educational attainment has become critical. Hispanic community college enrollment in Texas continues to rise, yet these students are not transferring to 4-year institutions at the same rate as other groups. This study analyzed data from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board of 50 Texas community colleges to determine how well the independent variables (Hispanic population of each community college campus locale, Hispanic community college student college readiness as indicated by Texas Success Indicator scores, and the percent of Hispanic faculty at each community college) accounted for the variance on the dependent variable (Hispanic community college student transfer rate). Multiple regression was used to determine the magnitude of the relationships between the dependent variable and the combination of all the independent variables. Commonality analysis was then utilized to identify proportions of variance in the dependent variable from combinations of the independent variables. The independent variables together generated a statistically significant regression model on the dependent variable, F(4, 64) = 3.067, p = .023. The R2 coefficient between the independent variables on the dependent variable presented a positive relationship with 17.2% variance. The percent of Hispanic community college faculty was the largest contributor to the variance (62.09%), the strongest factor in accounting for the transfer rates of Hispanic community college students to 4-year universities. Hispanic population of each community college campus locale had the least effect on the dependent variable with a 1.47% variance. The findings of this study support the recent report by the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board in favor of research and resources for Hispanic educator preparation programs.
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.
Licensed Professional Counselors’ Attitudes Toward People with Schizophrenia: Predictors of Interest in Providing Interventions
For individuals with schizophrenia and their caregivers, psychosocial interventions have been shown to significantly improve recovery and reduce relapse rates. Although this population is underserved and stigmatized, counselors have been excluded from most research into attitudes toward and interventions for these families. Using a stratified random sample survey design, researchers explored the relationships between participating U.S. Licensed Professional Counselors’ attitudes towards, recovery beliefs regarding, familiarity with, desire for social distance from, and interest in providing services to individuals with schizophrenia and their caregivers. Most of the 111 participants (11.1% response rate) identified themselves as female (83.8%) and Caucasian (86.5%). A few participants described themselves as Hispanic (6.3%) or Black or African-American (5.4%). Respondents ranged in age in years from 20’s to 60’s with the largest group in their 40’s. Descriptive statistics indicated that the majority of LPC participants reported low to moderate stigmatizing attitudes, strong beliefs in recovery, and moderate to high interest in providing interventions for people with schizophrenia and their caregivers. Furthermore, almost half of participating LPCs reported already working with individuals with schizophrenia. Bivariate correlations and hierarchical regressions indicated that high interest in providing interventions for this population was significantly correlated (p < .01) with high frequency of already working with the population (large effect), low desire for social distance (medium effect), high desire to help socially (medium effect), and strong beliefs in recovery (small effect). The results support including LPCs in all areas pertaining to interventions, research, and recovery for people with schizophrenia and their caregivers.
The Perceived Value Among Employers of College Study Abroad for Engineers
Engineering graduates of the twenty-first century must be worldly and understand how to work with professionals from many cultures on projects that cross international boundaries. Increasingly, employers are finding that prospective employees who have studied abroad make better, more rounded candidates than those who have no life experience outside of their home region. The objective of this study was to determine whether engineering students who participate in a major-specific, study abroad experience are more desirable as candidates for employment than those who only study at their home institution. This descriptive study surveyed the membership of the combined Industrial Advisory Boards of the University of North Texas College of Engineering (n=90) which is a focused group of skilled managers and directors that represent various businesses, industries and organizations. The survey yielded a 58% response rate. The evaluation was validated by a survey that searched for a perceptual trend among representatives from business and industry who are in a hiring capacity for engineering graduates, evaluating a major-specific study abroad experience as part of a graduate’s employability and career growth. Statistical Analysis was made on Companies whose scope of business is domestic and international comparing the perceived value of study abroad as a characteristic for hiring new engineers, as well as comparing the perceived value of foreign study or work experience on the career development of engineers. These tests indicated that at the 0.05 level there was no statistical significance in the findings. Additional analysis was made on groups of employees that either had foreign experience (work or study) and those that did not. These tests indicated that there was no statistical significance in the findings. Analysis of the data indicates that although having a major specific study abroad experience may not be important at the entry level, it becomes more important as an engineer progresses into mid-career. It could also indicate change in the business climate and a growing need for global awareness. Additional observations show that other co-curricular activities, such as internships and grades weigh more in the hiring of a new engineering graduate.
Child Teacher Relationship Training (Ctrt) with Children Exhibiting Disruptive Behavior: Effects on Teachers’ Ability to Provide Emotional and Relational Support to Students and on Student-teacher Relationship Stress
This study investigated the impact of child teacher relationship training (CTRT) on teachers’ ability to provide emotional support in the classroom, teachers’ use of relationship-building skills, and teachers’ level of stress related to the student-child relationship. Teachers and aides from one Head Start school were randomly assigned to the experimental group CTRT (n = 11) or an active control Conscious Discipline group (CD; n = 12). Overall, 21 females, 11 (CTRT) and 11 (CD), and one male (CD) participated in the study. Participating teachers and aides identified themselves as the following: 13 Hispanic/Latino, 5 Black American, and 5 European American. Teachers and aides identified children with clinical levels of disruptive behavior problems for the purpose of selecting children of focus for the study. The children’s mean age was 3.63 for CTRT group and 3.36 for CD group. Overall, 9 females, 2 (CTRT) and 7 (CD), and 10 males, 6 (CTRT) and 4 (CD) participated in the study. Teachers reported children’s ethnicity: 13 Hispanic/Latino, 5 African American, and 1 other. A two-factor (Treatment x Group) repeated measures split plot ANOVA was utilized to analyze the data with an alpha level of .05. According to objective raters blinded to the study using the Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS) and the Child Teacher Relationship Skills Checklist (CTRT-SC) and teacher reports using Index of Teaching Stress (ITS), results revealed a statistically significant interaction effect for the experimental teachers’ use of child-teacher relationship skills (CTRT-SC: p = .036), a non-statistically significant interaction effect for the experimental teachers’ ability to provide emotional support (CLASS: p = .50), and a non-statistically significant interaction effect on teacher stress (ITS: p = .997). Partial eta squared effect sizes were calculated to determine the practical significance of the findings. Compared to the active control, CTRT demonstrated large treatment effects over time on the CTRT-SC (?p2 = .19) and the CLASS (?p2 = .16). Study findings provide support for CTRT as an effective intervention for increasing Head Start teachers’ ability to provide emotional and relational support to at-risk students.
The Emotional Needs of Mothers of Multiple Birth Children
The purpose of this study was to assess the emotional support needs of mothers of multiple birth children based on administration of a survey the researcher developed. The survey consisted of 25 demographic items, six 6-point Likert scale items, and three open-ended questions. Likert scale items were based on amount of perceived emotional support mothers received in their environments at the time of survey administration. Open-ended questions addressed negative and positive aspects of parenting multiples and emotional support needs. The sample consisted of 171 mothers of multiple birth children from 23 states in the United States. Participants ranged in age from 20-50 years old with 38% not reporting age. Participants were 95.3% Caucasian, 0% African-American, 1.8% Asian, 0% Native American and 1.2% other; of these, 5.8% were Hispanic. We used demographic statistics and constant comparison to determine basic demographic characteristics of this sample and to identify emotional support needs of mothers of multiple birth children. We used Pearson product moment correlation to determine potential relationships between variables. Results indicated a statistically significant positive correlation between overall life satisfaction and partner satisfaction (r = .420, n = 170, p < 0.01). Therefore, mothers of multiples experience increased satisfaction with their lives when they receive greater support from partners. Also, results indicated a statistically significant positive correlation between partner satisfaction and partner caretaking responsibilities (r = .305, n = 169, p < 0.01). As partners of mothers of multiples increase contribution to caretaking of children, mothers demonstrate greater relationship fulfillment. Implications for mental health professionals working with mothers of multiple birth children are discussed.
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.
Child Teacher Relationship Training As a Head Start Early Mental Health Intervention for Children Exhibiting Disruptive Behavior: an Exploratory Study
This exploratory study examined the effectiveness of child teacher relationship training (CTRT) with at-risk preschool children exhibiting disruptive behavior. The participants included a total of 23 Head Start teachers and their aides, and children identified by their teachers as exhibiting clinical or borderline levels of externalizing behavior problems. Teacher participants included 22 females and 1 male; demographics were reported as 56% Hispanic ethnicity, 17% Black American, and 22% European American. Child participants included 15 males and 5 females; demographics were reported as 60% Hispanic, 30% Black American, and 10% European American. A 2 by 3 (Group x Repeated Measures) split plot ANOVA was used to analyze the data. According to teacher reports using the Teacher Report Form (C-TRF) and blinded raters’ reports using the Direct Observation Form (DOF) to assess disruptive behaviors, children whose teachers received the CTRT intervention demonstrated statistically significant decreases (p < .05) in externalizing behaviors on the C-TRF and total problems on the DOF from pre- to mid- to post-test, compared to children whose teachers participated in the active control group. The CTRT intervention demonstrated large treatment effects on both measures (C-TRF: ?p2 =.173; DOF: ?p2=.164) when compared to CD, revealing the practical significance of the findings on reducing disruptive behaviors. According to independent raters on the DOF, 90% of children receiving the CTRT intervention moved from clinical levels of behavioral concern to more normative levels of functioning following treatment, establishing the clinical significance of CTRT as an early mental health intervention for preschool children in Head start exhibiting disruptive behavior.
Understanding the Motivation of Vietnamese International Students and Their Higher Education Experiences in the United States
This research describes what motivates Vietnamese students to come to the U.S. to study for a degree, what outcomes they expect, and what they experience academically and culturally while studying in the U.S. Currently the surge of international students from Vietnam has reached an all time high of 13,112 students to the U.S. This moves the relatively small South East Asian nation to the ranking of ninth among all nations for the number of international students sent to the U.S. in depth interviews were conducted fall semester 2011 with 11 students enrolled in two large public universities in the Dallas-Fort Worth-Denton Metro area. the participants were students from Vietnam holding J-1 or F-1 visas who were in their sophomore year or beyond. Interviews were conducted with these undergraduate and graduate students on the campus where each was enrolled. Interview transcripts were provided to participants for their review and comments. Ethnograph qualitative research software was used to analyze and code the data. These students reported that the increased number of students coming to study in the U.S. is because of the reputation of higher education in the U.S., relatives living in the U.S. who create a support system, and economic growth in Vietnam which has made education abroad more accessible. More students are coming to the U.S. for study because of the respect that these students families and friends have for the educational system and potential of opportunity that a U.S. degree brings. Meaningful relationships with other students provide a better and broader educational experience for Vietnamese international students. Vietnamese international students desire not only gainful employment from their degree but also a balanced growth experience that includes friendships, immersion in the culture, and being responsible members of the host society. These students made strategic use of the community college to enhance their higher education experience. the findings indicate that universities and colleges interested in attracting students from Vietnam should forge partnerships between community colleges and universities and with local Vietnamese communities to promote recruitment, affordability, retention, and graduation.
Theological Higher Education in Liberia: a Case Study of the Liberia Baptist Theological Seminary
The Liberia Baptist Theological Seminary (LBTS), opened on March 4, 1976, exists to train men and women for Christian ministry. It offers four-year degree programs leading to bachelor of arts in theology, bachelor of arts in religious education, and bachelor of divinity. Three major periods characterized its growth and development. the first, from 1976 to 1989, was a period of growth and prosperity. the second, from 1990-2003, was a time of immense challenge for the seminary because of the Liberian Civil War. the final period, from 2003 to the present, shows the seminary attempting to re-position itself for the future as a premier Christian higher education institution in Liberia. One of the challenges remaining, however, is the lack of historical documentation on factors impacting the growth of the seminary. This historical case study research sought to provide a comprehensive overview of the LBTS within the context of theological higher education in Liberia and the Liberian Civil War. the four major purposes guiding this research were: 1. Historical—to document and evaluate the rise, survival, developments and achievements of LBTS; 2. Institutional—to gain insight into how the seminary operates; 3. to document the effects of the 13-year civil war on the seminary; and 4. to identify the perceived challenges and needs of the seminary. Study participants included administrators, faculty, staff, students, graduates, and trustees, both past and present. Data were gathered through semi-structured interviews and document analysis. with thorough analysis of all data, seven major themes surfaced: 1.The lack of funding and qualified national faculty; 2.The relationship between missionaries and nationals; 3. the need for partnership development nationally and internationally; 4. the strong impact of the civil war on the seminary; 5. Realignment of seminary mission; and 6. the need for Bible training center and seminary perseverance during the war. As the seminary positions itself for the future, it continues to experience need in the areas of financial and educational resources, Internet technology, and the acquisition of qualified national faculty.
Personalities and Pipelines: Exploring the Role of Personality in Student Self-selection Into Stem Majors
Despite all the national efforts to increase STEM enrollment in the United States, the gap between the U.S. and other developed countries in terms of STEM graduates has widened over the last 20 years. Researchers have studied factors such as gender, race, high school GPA, and the student’s socioeconomic status for their impact on STEM enrollment. This study offers another possible explanation of why students might choose, or not choose, to enroll in STEM majors by examining the relationship between personality and STEM enrollment. the sample included 2,745 respondents to the 2008 Cooperative Institutional Research Program freshman survey at a large research university in the southwestern United States. Factor analysis was used to create four personality scales, based on John Holland’s theory of personality types, with items selected from the survey. Logistic regression was utilized to answer three research questions: Are students classified as a strong investigative personality type more likely to enroll in STEM majors than students classified as a weak investigative personality type? Are there differences in their likelihood to enroll in STEM majors among students of investigative-social, investigative-artistic, and investigative-enterprising personality types? What effect does personality have on students’ self-selection into a biological versus a physical STEM major? Results suggested that students with a combined investigative and social personality were more likely to enroll in STEM majors whereas students with a combined investigative and artistic personality were less likely to do so. Additionally, STEM students with an enterprising personality were more likely to choose a biological STEM major than a physical STEM major. These results should benefit educators and policy makers who seek to strengthen the pipeline into STEM fields.
Filial Therapy and the Family: Examining the Impact of Child Parent Relationship Therapy (Cprt) on Family Functioning
Research has indicated that filial therapy, an approach in which parents conduct play sessions with their young children, has strong effects on the participating parents and children. As a result, some have speculated that filial therapy improves the family system; however, minimal research exists to support this claim. Using a single-case, time-series design, I examined the impact of child parent relationship therapy (CPRT), a filial therapy approach, on the functioning of 8 diverse families (two-parent, biological children = 4; two-parent, adopted children = 3; single-parent, biological children = 1). 15 parents and 17 children (male = 15, female = 17) participated in the study. All but 1 parent was Caucasian. The children were more ethnically diverse (Caucasian = 5, Hispanic/Caucasian = 5, Hispanic = 3, Asian = 2). Parents’ ages ranged from 29 to 49 and children’s from 2 to 13. Results from simulation modeling analyses (SMA) indicated that 6 of 7 families experienced a statistically significant improvement in their targeted areas of family functioning, and the average effect size was moderate. Results from self-reported measures indicated that 7 families experienced notable improvements in family satisfaction, 4 in cohesion, 3 in communication, and 1 in flexibility. Data from an observational measure rated by independent assessors also indicated improvements pre- to post-intervention: 5 families in flexibility, 4 families in cohesion, and 4 families in communication. All families reported improved functioning in post-intervention interviews. The results support that the benefits of filial therapy may indeed extend to the family system.
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.
Perceived Effects of a Mid-length Study Abroad Program
The focus of the study was the University of Dallas’ Rome Program, a mid-length study abroad program on the university’s campus in Rome, Italy. The program is designed to provide participants with the opportunity to encounter firsthand Western tradition by integrating the core curriculum through classroom teachings and class excursions, thus solidifying the foundation of the participants’ undergraduate education. Beyond this purpose, the Rome Program does not operate from established goals and objectives for student experience. I consulted relevant research literature to construct a schema of domains of development appropriate to this qualitative study. These domains were intellectual development, global perspective, career development, and spiritual development. I interviewed 20 University of Dallas seniors who participated in the mid-length study abroad program between fall 2009 and spring 2011, using an extended, semi-structured interview protocol. The participants included 11 females and 9 males; 19 White and 1 Hispanic. The findings were supported by subsequent review by 4 of the interviewed students. I found generally strong but inconsistent support for student development in each of the domains. A number of sub-themes are reported. Through the interviews, an additional theme of personal development emerged and is reported. Although the findings generally support the conclusion that the Rome Program is successful, good education practice leads to a recommendation of more explicit setting of goals by higher education program planners and administrators. Such goal setting provides rationale for program construction, provides students with their own goal framework, and establishes a tangible framework for ongoing program evaluation.
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.
Relationships of Approaches to Studying, Metacognition, and Intellectual Development of General Chemistry Students
This study investigated approaches to studying, intellectual developments, and metacognitive skills of general chemistry students enrolled for the spring 2011 semester at a single campus of a multi-campus community college. the three instruments used were the Approaches and Study Skills Inventory for Students (ASSIST), the Learning Environment Preferences (LEP), and the Executive Process Questionnaire (EPQ). the subjects were 138 students enrolled in either general chemistry 1 or 2. the results revealed that the preferred approach to study was the strategic approach. the intellectual development of the students was predominantly Perry’s position 2 (dualist) in transition to position 3 (multiplicity). Correlation statistics revealed that deep approach to studying is related to effective employment of metacognitive skills. Students with a deep approach to studying were likely to utilize effective metacognitive skills. Students with a surface approach to studying used no metacognitive skills or ineffective metacognitive skills. Multiple logistic regression analysis was conducted to ascertain which of the three variables, namely approaches to studying, ability to metacognate, or level of intellectual development, was the most salient in predicting the success of general chemistry students. No single variable was found to predict students’ success in general chemistry classes; however, a surface approach to studying predisposes general chemistry students to fail. the implication of this study is that students’ study approaches, intellectual developments, and metacognitive skills are requisite information to enable instructional remediation early in the semester.
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.
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.
South Asian Women’s Experiences In Counseling: An Exploration Of Working Alliance, Multicultural Competence, Acculturation, And Cultural Value Conflicts
The purpose of this study was to examine predictors of client-counselor working alliance by understanding the effects of acculturation, perceived multicultural competence in counselors, and cultural value conflicts among South Asian women. The study was based on a nonrandom sample of women ages 18 to 39 years living in the United States who had completed at least three counseling sessions with a mental health professional in the last 5 years. Forty participants completed the online survey. Participants were recruited through personal contacts, social networking Internet websites, businesses, agencies, and places of worship. The majority of participants were highly educated, second-generation women descending from India or Pakistan. The full survey included an eligibility screening questionnaire, demographic questionnaire, the Working Alliance Inventory-Short Revised with an average mean of 4.82, Cross-Cultural Counseling Inventory-Revised with an average mean of 4.17 and reliability of excellent internal consistency reliability at ? = .92, Asian Values Scale-Revised with an average mean score of 2.44, and Cultural Value Conflicts Scale for South Asian Women with a mean score of 3.33. Participants reported experiencing working alliance often within the therapeutic relationship and experienced middle levels of Asian value adherence, falling in the integration level. The results indicated that participants experienced neutral to agreeable cultural value conflicts. Bivariate correlations indicated a statistically significant, moderate relationship between participants’ perceptions of counselors’ multicultural competence and their reports of working alliance in the therapeutic relationship. All other correlations reflected small to moderate effect sizes; however, these correlations were not statistically significant. Similarly, bivariate regression indicated that perceptions of multicultural counselor competence predicted the client-counselor working alliance to a moderate degree. From the results of hierarchical linear regression, acculturation and cultural value conflicts did not predict client-counselor working alliance even after accounting for perceived multicultural competence in counselors. The strongest predictor of client-counselor working alliance was the perceived multicultural competence of counselors. Probable reasons for the results of this study were discussed, limitations were identified, and suggestions for counseling practice were provided. Implications for the profession of counseling were made, and recommendations for future research were provided.
A Quantitative Study of the Presidential Search Process and Position Longevity in Community Colleges
A great deal of time, money, and effort can be expended on hiring community college presidents without any assurance that they will remain in their new positions a substantial amount of time. Building on decades of literature reporting the continuing decrease of presidential longevity, this study examined the methods most successful in selecting presidents with relatively greater longevity and what relationship exists between the type of presidential search used and the length of tenure. An original 18-question survey was e-mailed to 904 community college and two-year institution presidents to capture information about both current and previous presidencies. Participants returned 224 valid responses for a response rate of 24.8%. Results of a generalized linear model (GLM) yielded a statistically significant result showing a positive relationship between the variable Q7STDT1(type of presidential searches in current position) and length of tenure of selected candidates (F = 3.41, p = .006).No significant relationship was found between the selection process used in the immediately previous presidential positions and selected candidates’ longevity in those positions. Information from this study can be used to decide what types of selection process should be used and to indicate further topics of inquiry in this area.