Productivity analysis of adult basic education programs : an analytic model Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/b8515s269

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  • The central purpose of this study was to develop a model for the examination of productivity in Adult Basic Education. To that end, an instrument developed for use in the field of business was adapted for use with an educational audience. It examined the relationship of adult education staff decision making, job satisfaction, background and training, and codification of rules to program productivity within seven Adult Basic Education programs in the western United States. The productivity measure utilized in the study was represented by the grade level growth achieved by the individual students as reported in the Adult Education Annual Performance Report. The sample of this study was selected from Adult Basic Education staff members employed by seven programs within four western states: Oregon, Washington, Idaho, California. A total of 199 subjects responded. Both partial correlation and multiple regression were used to test the following four hypotheses. 1. There is a positive relationship between centralization and production. 2. There is a positive relationship between formalization and production. 3. There is a negative relationship between complexity and production. 4. There is a neaative relationship between job satisfaction and production. Statistical tests administered to the data revealed the following results. Job satisfaction proved to be the only positive predictor of productivity. Centralization (decision making) negatively influenced productivity through the intervening variable of job satisfaction. Formalization (codification of rules) also was found to influence productivity negatively through the intervening variable of job satisfaction. Both centralization and formalization were shown to be positively correlated with each other. Complexity (level of staff training) was shown to be related positively to formalization and negatively related to centralization. As a consequence of these statistical findings, all the research hypotheses were rejected. The original hypotheses which proposed the existence of positive relationships between productivity, centralization, and formalization, and negative relationships beween productivity, complexity, and job satisfaction were not supported by the findings in this study. Job satisfactton proved to be the only independent predictor of productivity, and that relationship was shown to be a positive one rather than the negative one originally proposed. Based upon the findings of this study, the following conclusions were drawn: 1. Centralization and Production. Increased productivity rates will occur when personnel are allowed to share in decision making regarding program and personnel matters. 2. Formalization and Production. In this study higher productivity rates occurred when adult education personnel perceived formalization to be at a minimum, and innovation and creativity were not restrained by standardized procedures but rather encouraged by the absence of them. 3. Complexity and Production. According to the data generated by this study, it was shown that complexity was not related to productivity. 4. Job Satisfaction and Production. In matters pertaining to working conditions and supervision, a satisfied staff is a more productive one.
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