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An Investigation of Factors Deterring Participation in Continuing Professional Education

Description: This study was conceived as an attempt to determine .and analyze factors deterring participation in continuing professional education among social workers in environments where continuing education for relicensure is mandatory and voluntary. The specific research design implemented to complete this study was the ex-post facto descriptive design. The sample included 106 social workers randomly selected in the state of Texas where continuing education is mandatory and 94 social workers in the state of Louisiana where continuing education is voluntary. The instrument used was the Deterrent to Participation Scale developed by Scanlan (1983) and a demographic inventory. Scanlan (1983) earlier identified six factors deterring participation in continuing professional education: Disengagement, Lack of Quality, Family Constraints, Cost, Lack of Benefit, and Work Constraints. The study concluded that social workers in both states considered work constraint as a major factor deterring participation in continuing professional education. Also the factors of cost and lack of quality were also considered as crucial barriers in their efforts to participate in continuing professional education. The Wilks' multivariate test of significance of the means and univariate F tests at alpha level p < .05 revealed differences in the combined mean scores of social workers in both states when the variables of age, marital status, and position held were tested. In comparing the ranking of the six factors deterring participation in continuing professional education, a Spearman rank correlation coefficient revealed respondents in both states rank the six factors in the same order. The findings were congruent with earlier studies of barriers to participation in continuing education among professionals. The researcher recommended a study which would include a larger number of social workers and a longitudinal study to measure changes in barriers to participation in continuing professional education.
Date: December 1985
Creator: Akintade, Aribigbola