The effects of work experience programs on disadvantaged ninth grade students in Corvallis, Oregon Public Deposited

http://ir.library.oregonstate.edu/concern/graduate_thesis_or_dissertations/n296x297q

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  • Purpose of the Study The purpose of this study was to measure, by the analysis of statistical and subjective data, the effects of work experience programs on disadvantaged ninth grade students. The study involved one major hypothesis: the introduction of work experience, as part of the ninth grade curriculum, for selected students would result in improved self-image, improved outlook toward school, improved acceptance of and by others, and improved perception of work. Procedures Experimental classes in two junior high schools spent nine weeks in work experience. During this time they spent mornings in regular classes and afternoons in the special program. Included in this program were three weeks on three different jobs and once-a-week seminar-counseling sessions. A third junior high provided the control group which received no special treatment. The search for data fell into two main steps: 1. Statistical analysis of data in which comparisons were made between control and experimental groups as measured by instruments marked by students, parents, and teachers. 2. Subjective data collected from writings by students and from personal interviews conducted with teachers, parents, and employers. Findings Statistical data showed significant results in positive change of attitude toward self-image as observed by teachers. Subjective data supported all phases of the program. All participants saw the program to have positive value, although in varying degrees. Parents and employers saw all positive results, whereas students and teachers gave many favorable comments along with a few negative responses. Recommendations 1. Work experience programs be implemented as an integral part of the junior high school curriculum. 2. Lead-up activities begin no later than grade seven, and follow-up programs be planned at the senior high school level. 3. Encouragement and support should be provided for work experience programs and other studies which illustrate the humanization of the educational process.
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