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EXPLORING CURRICULUM AND INSTRUCTION PERCEPTIONS OF EDUCATIONAL LEADERSHIP STUDENTS AT PENN STATE
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Sigler, Christopher Matthew
Doctor of Philosophy
Date of Defense:
June 05, 2018
Dr. Edward Fuller, Dissertation Advisor
Dr. Edward Fuller, Committee Chair
Dr. Deborah Schussler, Committee Member
Dr. Laurence Boggess, Committee Member
Dr. Renata Engel, Outside Member
This study was driven by concerns regarding student and alumni perspectives of the curriculum and instruction of the Educational Leadership Department’s graduate programs at Penn State University. Of importance was understanding how other departments have explored these aspects through use of surveys; one in particular was Arthur Bangert’s (2006) Student Evaluation of Online Teaching Effectiveness (SEOTE) Survey. Transactional Distance Learning Theory was the theoretical framework that guided this research study. A mixed-methods study was designed to focus on exploring the perceptions of curriculum and instruction though a survey called the Perceptions of Instruction and Curriculum Quality Survey (PICQS). Respondents completed the survey first and volunteers participated in follow-up interviews. Three groups emerged from the survey; respondents that have taken residential instruction courses, respondents that have taken online instruction courses, and respondents that have taken both residential and online instruction courses. The study targeted current students and alumni from the Educational Leadership Department. Thirty-five respondents persisted through the survey which was voluntary. Respondent’s age, gender, cumulative grade point average and nationality were obtained since previous literature describes all mentioned characteristics as having effects on perceptions of curriculum and instruction. The means for each statement on the PICQS were calculated and compared across the three groups. Follow up interviews were transcribed, coded, and reviewed for emerging themes. The main contributions that this study generated were: a) provide statistical data regarding perceptions of curriculum and instruction of the Educational Leadership graduate programs; b) recognize that age and gender are factors that contribute to one’s perception of instructional mode; c) understand the viewpoints of students and alumni through interviews.
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