A study of the formal preparation of academic teachers in community colleges with proposals for Oregon Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/3f462877v

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  • The primary purpose of this study was to investigate the formal preparation currently required and desired for teachers of lower-division collegiate courses in public community colleges in the western United States and to make recommendations for the preparation of such teachers in Oregon. The identification of the functions of institutions and agencies concerned with providing an appropriate educational program for the preparation of these teachers was also considered. The findings of this study were limited primarily to an analysis of the judgments and views concerning the formal preparation of such teachers as expressed in questionnaires received from community college administrators, state department of education officials, and regional accrediting representatives. Sixty-four administrators in 11 Western states were represented in the investigation. Officials from 13 State Departments of Education participated. Representatives of the three regional accrediting associations encompassing the 13 Western states also provided information. The data obtained from the questionnaire returns were recorded, analyzed, and interpreted. This included a comparison of the information received from the three groups represented in the study. When it seemed pertinent, the data compiled were compared with the findings of related studies. Summary: The present formal preparation requirements for community college teachers in the Western states was reported most frequently as a masters degree in the subject area to be taught. A substantial majority of the community colleges in the Western states establish their own minimum formal preparation requirements for teachers. Most of the respondents judged the present preparation of academic teachers satisfactory in the major and minor teaching areas. However, they did indicate a preference for teachers with more general education and broad-field preparation. The subject matter preparation required of academic teachers has increased in recent years and the trend is to require less professional education. Six professional education courses were considered to be valuable either as preservice or in-service instruction. Still there is a reluctance to require such courses. State teaching certificates are becoming increasingly unpopular with community college personnel. This issue is becoming more apparent as teachers are recruited from sources other than high school faculties. State department of education officials were more favorable toward certification than community college administrators. In general, the participants in this study favored a substantial number of proposed functions that might be performed by institutions and agencies concerned with the preparation of academic teachers. The endorsement of these functions could be indicative of a real need for special preparation programs. There has been no organized effort in Oregon to prepare academic teachers for community college teaching. The present statutes in Oregon would permit the development of an adequate program for the formal preparation of such teachers. The formal preparation required of academic teachers in Oregon compares favorably with that of other Western states. Recommendations: A concerted effort should be made by appropriate agencies and institutions to identify the need that apparently exists in Oregon for a special preparation program for academic teachers. These organizations should arrive at some consensus as to the desirable formal preparation for academic teachers and proceed to implement such a program.
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