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Appendix A Review of R&D in Major Priority Areas The members and staff of the Committee on Vocational Education Re- search and Development reviewed literature on nine major research top ~cs: Career development and guidance Students with special needs Characteristics of students Teacher education Instructional techniques Curriculum development Labor market supply and demand information Administration of vocational education Evaluation of vocational education programs Sources included 15 papers commissioned by the Committee (see Appen- dix By on various aspects of vocational education R&D; the review and synthesis monograph series published by the Ohio State University Cen- ter for Vocational Education; and numerous reports recommended by members of the Committee and others working in vocational education. These resources did not provide a complete review of vocational edu- cation R&D over the last ten years. The Ohio State monograph series, which is intended to review and synthesize the literature in several cate- gories within vocational education, is necessarily selective in the findings reported and the topics reviewed. Further, the less recent monographs of 83
84 Appendix A the series, written between 1966 and 1970, do not contain current in- formation. Unfortunately for this Committee as well as for the progress of vocational education R&D, the monograph series was largely discon- tinued after 1972 when funding was withdrawn. As noted in Chapter 4, the Committee was unable to review projects funded only under the 1963 Act and the 1968 Amendments because many project reports do not exist and because it was impossible in many cases to identify a project's funding source. Therefore, this review covers R&D projects pertinent to vocational education, whether or not they were funded under the vocational education R&D legislation. CAREER DEVELOPMENT AND GUIDANCE One line of research in career development dates back to Super's longitu- dinal Career Pattern Study of the late 1950s, which became the founda- tion for the self-concept approach to career decision making (Herr 1975~. Super's self-concept theory suggests that people choose careers in which they can implement their self-concepts. Students' self-concepts are hy- pothesized to be similar to their descriptions of people in the occupations they feel they will eventually enter. Hypotheses derived from Super's theory have been tested by numer- ous educational and other researchers. For example, Ziegler gathered data from 428 male college students on self-descriptions, preferred occu- pations, and probable occupations (Mitchell et al. 1975~. Study results indicate that students saw themselves as being more like people in ca- reers they wanted to enter than like people in jobs they disliked, a finding that supports Super's self-concept theory. However, the precise events and experiences that create various self-concepts have not been specified. Like Super, many theorists have been concerned with occupational selection as an expression of personality. For example, Holland's model of vocational choice behavior includes a six-category typology of person- ality and predicts that individuals will choose occupations in categories consistent with their personality types (Mitchell et al. 1975~. Empirical studies exploring this theory have yielded inconclusive results, partly due to the difficulty of assigning students to personality types. What causes people to prefer occupations in one or more of these six categories re- mains to be discovered. Krumboltz (1975) has advanced a social learning theory approach specifying factors that influence educational or occupational preferences. Mitchell's review confirms several propositions of the theory, showing that educational or occupational preferences are related to (1) positive reinforcement (such as successful performance in a course), (2) reinforce
Appendix A 85 ment by a valued person (such as a parent or a favorite teacher) who advocates entry into a course or occupation, or (3) exposure to "positive words and images associated with the course, occupation, or field of work" (Mitchell 1975, p. 42~. Other studies confirm that an individual is more likely to enroll in a course or seek employment in an occupation if he or she has recently expressed a preference for that course or occupa- tion, if opportunities exist for participation or employment, or if he or she has learned skills that match the occupational requirement (Mitchell et al. 1975~. Still other studies, reviewed by Homer, Buterbaugh, and Carefoot (Mitchell et al. 1975), show that occupational choice is influenced by the occupation of the father, attitudes of parents toward education, and the education of parents. They note that on-thejob experience influences decision making; rural students are more concerned with learning a specific vocation than are urban students; and farming as an occupation is more often transmitted from father to son than are other occupations. Many theories of occupational decision making have one common impli- cation for vocational guidance: guidance should not merely react to a problem or concern an immediate choice, but should teach decision- making skills appropriate to vocational choices. However, evidence that teaching such skills results in better decisions does not exist. Although a large body of empirical data exists on certain aspects of vocational deci- sion making, knowledge is sketchy and the studies cannot be compared easily with one another (Mitchell et al. 1975~. With the growth of career development theory, the elements and ob- jectives of vocational guidance have received more attention. For exam- ple, Martin developed a conceptual model for the design of guidance materials for non-college-bound and culturally disadvantaged young people (Tennyson 1968~. Krumboltz and his colleagues evaluated the success of specific guidance techniques in effecting desired changes in vocational behavior. They found that "verbal reinforcement of informa- tion seeking responses during the (counseling) interview resulted in greater exploration of relevant occupational and educational informa- tion outside of the counseling situation" (p. 360~. Other research has attempted to identify elective guidance techniques, such as counseling skills required to accomplish specific goals. Counsel- ing skills identified by researchers at Michigan State and Stanford Uni- versities are related to contact, postural position, reflection of feeling, and summarization of feeling (Herr 1975~. The trend toward creating behavioral objectives for those receiving vocational guidance has accel- erated since the career education movement began in 1971. Researchers at the Center for Vocational Education in Ohio created a ten-phase mod
86 Appendix A el for vocational guidance programming that includes the translation of goals into student behavioral objectives (Herr 1975~. Measurement devices have been developed to gauge success in attain- ing the specific behavioral goals of career development. For example, Crites developed the Career Maturity Inventory, composed of an atti- tude scale and a competence test intended to measure work orientation, independence in decision making, self-appraisal, and occupational in- formation (Herr 1975~. Several computer-based guidance systems have been developed, such as the Pennsylvania State University Computer-Assisted Career Explora- tion System. These systems attempt to provide accurate and complete occupational information for rational decision making by students. In- formation is provided in multimedia forms, such as slides and computer printouts. Some systems even provide students with training in decision making (Herr 1975~. Many of these programmatic approaches to vocational guidance focus on preparing students to deal with the process of career decision making rather than with the actual career choice (Herr 19754. Vocational educa- tion needs more knowledge of how and why people choose and change careers. STUDENTS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS In accordance with the legislative intent that R&D be directed toward the problems of the disadvantaged and the handicapped, researchers have investigated the characteristics and problems of groups with special needs, and programs have been developed to serve those groups. Also, recent legal and social pressures have prompted R&D to study women in vocational education. Women An Ohio State research synthesis monograph on women in the world of work describes studies that have assessed the training needs of women, patterns of expected growth in job openings for women, and influences on the vocational choices of women. One study identified the attitudes of women toward careers and marriage by analyzing data on a career histo- ry sheet and a set of attitudinal scales for a sample of 1,237 girls and women. Attitudes affecting life-style included: "~1) a woman's impres- sion of male's reaction to the use of her intelligence; (2) struggle over the possible position of dominance of men at work and the place of women
Appendix A 87 at home; and (3) conflict between family and work demands upon the time of wife and mother" (Kievit 1972, p. 63~. Although there are some studies on women in vocational education, Roby (1975) notes that there has been relatively little vocational educa- tion R&D funding devoted to the needs of women, particularly since more than half the students in vocational education programs are women. For example, in fiscal 1974 only one out of 93 federally funded and adminis- tered Part C projects pertained directly to women. In the same year, no projects specifically on women were funded under Part I or Part D. Furthermore, in 1975 only three of the 50 state departments of education were sponsoring research on the needs of girls and women. The Disadvantaged R&D concerned with problems of the disadvantaged became a USOE priority in fiscal 1971, although legislation first emphasized the problems of the disadvantaged in 1963. Many studies concern the assessment of needs, identification of special problems, or development of programs to meet special needs. The Ohio State monograph synthesizing research on the urban disadvantaged acknowledges that research has lacked exten- siveness and quality. Topics needing more attention include public school vocational education programs, national surveys, teacher prepa- ration, student follow-up studies, and structured evaluation (Lockette and Davenport 1971~. In addition, "among the studies related to voca- tional education which exist, there is considerable duplication of data" (p. 34). However, some significant findings on the disadvantaged have emerged. For example, it has been shown that the involvement of the community in vocational education programs for the disadvantaged in- creases the completion and placement rates of both in-school and out-of- school trainees (Lockette and Davenport 19711. Also, research on out-of- school vocational education programs for the urban disadvantaged has shown them to be more successful than in-school programs in placing graduates in jobs. Some research has been done to determine the vocational education needs and characteristics of young people in rural areas and to compare these with the needs and characteristics of urban youths. For example, Boykin's findings support the generalization that the educational and occupational aspirations of urban youths are higher than those of young people in rural areas (Griessman and Densley 1969~. It has also been shown that most rural students ultimately look for urban jobs. This sug
88 Appendix A gests that local occupational surveys cannot accurately determine what occupations should be taught in each school. Adults Research related to adult students has been directed towards identifying elective techniques for teaching adults. For example, one study reports that programmed learning was more successful than the lecture-discus- sion method in terms of total knowledge gained in adult vocational agri- culture departments in five Northeastern states (Adams 1972, p. 38~. Ethnic Minorities Phyllis Hamilton's report (1975) on vocational education R&D on the needs of ethnic minorities states that little research has been aimed to- ward minority student needs, in part because administrators of vocation- al education R&D apparently hope that special needs could be met through general research on vocational education. From fiscal 1964 to fiscal 1969, about eight percent of Section 4(c) funding was devoted to ethnic minority needs, and about five percent each year of Part C fund- ing was concerned with the problems of minority students. A few studies focusing on the needs of ethnic minorities have received much attention. For example, a study by Wilford Wilms shows that nei- ther public nor vocational education has been successful in helping mi- nority students overcome barriers of class and income (Hamilton 1975~. However, whether or not vocational education can reasonably be expect- ed to overcome these barriers has received little attention. Hamilton draws several conclusions on the basis of her review of R&D conducted under the 1963 and 1968 legislation (pp. 40~9~: 1. The small amount of vocational education research that has been conducted for ethnic minority student needs has been underutilized in program development. 2. The negative image of vocational education held by minority groups has been reinforced by its use of labels such as "disadvantaged." 3. Much of vocational education research has been based on stereo- types of the "culturally disadvantaged." Few have tried to identify posi- tive attributes. 4. Specific skill training has been a major emphasis of vocational edu- cation research for ethnic minorities although remedial basic academic training was a minor emphasis.
Appendix A 89 5. Part D exemplary projects and fiscal 1974 projects show increased emphasis on more relevant career guidance for minority students. 6. A negative self-concept was seen as the biggest block to motivation for ethnic minorities; use of peer counselors was found to raise self-im- age. 7. Staff attitudes, expectations, and behaviors are critical variables in providing elective vocational training for minority students. 8. No research on recruitment was conducted, but use of classroom pare-professionals was a major theme of training activities. 9. Little research on ethnic minorities has concentrated on improving external linkages with business and industry. 10. There is an emerging bicultural emphasis research activity on ethnic minority needs. CHARACTERISTICS OF STUDENTS in vocational education Several research efforts describe the personal and social characteristics of vocational education students. Although a 1970 USOE study (Lecht 1972) rat that vocational students resemble the general student population, most studies indicate that vocational students have lower socioeconomic status and less academic ability than other students. The USOE report, although fairly recent and involving 29,000 secondary school students, contains data inconsistencies noted by Lecht, and its conclusions are therefore questionable. Other national studies Project TALENT and Somer's 1966 national survey of 1,500 students indicate that the heads of families of vocation- al students have had less education than family heads of high school students in the academic curriculum (Lecht 1972~. Project TALENT data also indicate that vocational students have less academic ability than other students, as measured by tests of verbal knowledge, verbal reason- ing, mathematical aptitude, general knowledge, and similar indices. In addition, vocational students differ on the average from the general stu- dent population in their socioeconomic background as measured by oc- cupation, income, or education of family heads (Evans and Galloway 1973~. The degree to which these differences are due to student choice or to assignment by the school (tracking) has not been determined (Bowen 1975). A 1969 USOE survey and a University of Wisconsin national survey in 1966 collected data on the racial composition of vocational education programs. The USOE survey found that 20 percent of secondary school vocational students were from minority groups, while the earlier Wiscon- sin study indicated that eight percent were from minority groups; this
9o Appendix A suggests that vocational education may have served more minority stu- dents in 1969 than in 1966 (Lecht 1972~. Official reports indicate that the proportion of "disadvantaged" students in vocational education pro- grams has increased since 1966, but the data are not conclusive, and the extent to which "disadvantaged" students are from minority groups is not clear. Changes in definition and classification and lack of informa- tion on students' backgrounds collected by local school districts have limited the collection of national Acts On r~rio1 And ,`th^' ~h^~+A~~:~ of students. A, ^ ~ All ~l~1 Ally ULll~1 ~11~r~leIlSllCS In addition to national surveys, state research projects have attempted to obtain information on the age, sex, socioeconomic background, and academic ability of vocational education students. Lecht (19741 cites examples of findings from such projects: ~^ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ A W1 L~O "More women of moderate ability enter occupational curricula whereas occupational men tend to be concentrated at lower ability lev- els," according to a review of several studies (p. 1 18~. 2. A survey of 50 junior colleges shows that "vocational-technical col- lege students do not differ greatly in self-reported high school grades from junior college students in general, but females tend to be superior to males"(p.119). 3. A sample of students enrolled in Washington State high schools, who plan to attend post-secondary business or vocational schools, re- ported lower grades, less interest in school work, and more dissatisfac- tion with school than a sample planning to attend college (p. 131~. 4. In the same sample, it was found that students' educational aspira- tions were influenced by their parents' educational attainments (p. 131~. 5. A survey of freshmen at a community college in Michigan shows that those enrolled in an academic curriculum evaluated their career potentials higher than did students enrolled in an occupational curricu- lum (pp. 140-141~. TEACHER EDUCATION The goal of teacher education, as described by Evans and Terry (1971), is to devise ways in which teachers can be prepared to teach accurately, effectively, and broadly so that their students will have maximum oppor- tunities to control their own future environments. Research in teacher education has not had a high priority in the vocational education R&D program funded under the 1963 and 1968 legislation. Consequently, as observed by Hamilton (1973), many researchers have concluded that
Appendix A /91 little is known about achieving teacher effectiveness or about the rela- tionship between teacher behavior and student growth. There have been some more recent developments in teacher education, but it cannot be demonstrated that they have been incorporated into existing vocational teacher education. Kievit (1975) reports that teacher education programs are most often determined by tradition or personal experience. She states that "the extent to which R&D has had an impact on teacher behavior through pre-service and in-service education is still largely speculative" (p. 32~. Another reviewer of research in teacher education, Douglas Sjogren (1971a), notes that evaluations of teacher education programs are rare. Many are either accreditation reviews by regional agencies or by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education. Others are one-time-only evaluations of specific projects that have little or no im- pact on future projects and have little utility for making decisions about programs while they are operating; this type of evaluation is appropriate only when limited resources preclude more extensive study, according to Sjogren. Sjogren states that there have been no rigorous, objective, em- pirical, process-oriented evaluations. However, Schill and Allen (1974) did a follow-up study of 692 full-time teachers who had completed their education during the preceding five-year period; the study indicates that teachers in the teacher education program in California had learned to perform most of the tasks encountered in instruction. Another review of vocational teacher education (Swanson 1974) stress- es the inadequacy of the data base for reviewing and improving the preparation of teachers. First, there are few data on programs not spon- sored by the states, such as on-thejob training in business and industry. Second, data on students are usually only enrollment data; data on insti- tution, program, occupational area, and duration of enrollment are not usually collected. Therefore, it is hard to assess even current demand for vocational teachers. Third, there are insufficient data on the current and future supply of teachers. Fourth, not enough is known about vocational teacher programs, for example, who conducts them, how the programs compare with one another, and how good their graduating teachers are. Despite limitations in knowledge available on teacher education, some progress has been made by R&D in finding more effective ways to alter teacher behavior. The identification of teacher competencies and re- search on pre-service and in-service education have been major subjects of exploration. An Ohio State research synthesis monograph by Peterson (1973) reports several studies that determined the competencies required of vocational teachers. For example, Peterson cites three studies in agri- culture by Nattress, Kruskap, and Mitschele that examined competen
92 Appendix A cies needed by vocational agriculture teachers in crops and soil science, farm management, and animal science. Peterson (1973) also reports on an evaluation of competency-based teacher education (CBTE) programs in Nebraska and Minnesota that show evidence of improved beginning teacher performance and highly improved student and teacher satisfaction. Using the CBTE approach, teacher competencies are specified and prospective teachers are held ac- countable for acquiring them. Hamilton (1973, p. 5) states that CBTE iS "primarily an outgrowth of the accountability movement in education," which is viewed as a radical innovation in education, but is not really different from earlier efforts. Hamilton states that CBTE iS based upon an inadequate research foundation (p. 21~. She cites a report by Heath and Nielsen based on a review of 42 studies of CBTE concluding that an em- pirical basis for CBTE simply does not exist (p. 20~. Hamilton cautions that CBTE iS "being oversold by USOE and creating unrealistic expecta- tions for widespread educational reform that could prematurely destroy the movement's potential" (p. vii). However, advocates of CBTE believe that teacher education will be emphasized in the future and that CBTE programs will be developed on the basis of Mint knnw1PAn~ nP Its_ ing. - r ~^- ~ ~ ~ ~, ~1 ~w w it, w1 anal 11 A considerable number of research projects have been conducted in pre-service education, which is directed toward teaching novices the nec- essa~y competencies for effective teaching. Moss (1971) reviewed re- search designed to test some of the assumptions underlying pre-service programs and found that the best predictor of teacher electiveness ap- pears to be academic achievement in teacher education programs. Moss cited several studies indicating that the number of years of teachers' experience in the occupation being taught is not correlated with student gains in verbal and manual skills (p. 459. Teachers' technical skills are important to student learning, but years of occupational experience do not necessarily ensure high levels of technical skills. Moss states that acquisition of technical skills by teachers via work experience usually takes longer than necessary; skills are too highly specialized to be maxi- mally useful; and by the time workers become teachers, the probability of pursuing further education has been reduced and their "worker value orientation may be too rigid" (p. 47). Also, a study by Cappiello reported by Moss indicates that student teaching has some benefits but that "it is frequently too little and too late" (p. 59~. Research funds for pre-service and in-service teacher education have supported numerous workshops, conferences, and institutes as means of disseminating information to teachers (Kievit 1975). Relatively few stud- ies have assessed the influence of workshops and institutes on teacher
Appendix A 93 behavior, but there are some. Miller studied a ten-week summer appren- ticeship program for prospective teachers and found that it changed atti- tudes that improved teacher preparation (Peterson 1973~. Techniques for micro-teaching, which deals with the division of instructional material into small or micro units, have been developed and evaluated for pre- service teacher education. Peterson cites one study by Bell that found micro-teaching superior to traditional forms of teacher preparation. In-service teacher education is directed toward continuing the im- provement and development of experienced teachers. Research on in- service teacher education has compared the merits of various education- al feedback techniques for improving teacher skill performance (Peterson 1973~. Peterson reports that the use of video-taping techniques in supply- ing both pre-service and in-service teachers with feedback relating to their teaching performance has attracted much attention. Hoerner et al. conclude that the use of video-feedback was a beneficial technique in pre-service trade and industrial education workshops (Peterson 19739. Kelley et al. (1971), in a study of the feasibility of remote supervision of ~ . . . . . . ,~ . .. . . . . . . home economics student teachers, touno that teachers and supervising teachers expressed greater satisfaction with face-to-face and video-phone techniques as opposed to audio-phone techniques. Harrington and Doty (1971) found that video-feedback of micro-teaching techniques was effective and feasible for improving selected teaching skills of technical teachers. It appears that R&D in vocational teacher education has had little actu- al influence to date upon improving teacher effectiveness, although some gains have been reported. Few, if any, national priorities or state plans have included research and development in vocational teacher educa- t~on. INSTRUCTIONAL TECHNIQUES Although a recent, comprehensive summary or synthesis of research on instructional methods in vocational education is not available, several instructional techniques are reported in the Ohio State review and syn- thesis monographs on vocational education content, industrial arts, com- munity colleges, adult education, education of the rural disadvantaged, and individualized instruction. Many instructional methods described in the reviews attempt to give vocational instruction or guidance with substantially reduced interaction between student and teacher or counselor. Such methods include pro- grammed instruction (usually printed material), television, computer-as- sisted guidance, teaching machines, multimedia packages, and a variety
94 Appendix A of methods of self-instruction. These methods often are very costly to develop, requiring specialized professional talent and training to design and implement as well as much field testing before they can be used with confidence. None of the methods is unique to vocational education and only a small fraction of the research on those methods has been conduct- ed using vocational education content, students, or settings. Vocational education research on these methods has used defective and weak meth- odology. As a result, many conclusions are tentative and only limited guidance can be given for the designation of methods for specific learn . . . sing situations. A second group of instructional methods in vocational education is characterized by settings for learning outside the classroom. Such set- tings are considered important in relating occupational preparation to learning appropriate interpersonal behavior and attitudes (Law 1971~. Included in this category are cooperative education methods, clinical practice, on-thejob training, vocational exploration, and a variety of special-purpose techniques such as those devised to assist the rural disad- vantaged: family-centered educational planning, pre-school preparation, vocational exploration and mobile training facilities. Much of the re- search on these extra-classroom instructional methods has been descrip- tive, developmental, or comparative. There has been only limited use of experimentation, and research methodology has often been defective. Like the previous group of methods, these methods seem to affect learn- ing, but on the basis of limited evidence it is difficult to demonstrate their superiority over other methods or prescribe them differentially for partic- ular learning problems. Cooperative education programs train students by combining school- work with job experience. The planning and supervision of these pro- grams is done by both the school and the employers so that each contrib- utes to the students' education and to their employability. An assessment of research in cooperative vocational education methods (Wallace 1970) includes observations that apply to all extra-classroom instructional methods. Wallace notes (1) the lack of a theoretical framework to guide the research and the applications of research findings; (2) the need for improved research technology for evaluation of such complex instruc- tion; (3) the need for attention to many student and teacher variables and their interactions in complex learning environments; and (4) the need for attention to changes in students related to higher-level intellec- tual skills, social skills, attitudes, and self-identity. However, a recent study (Walsh and Breglio 1976) in large cities indi- cates that at the post-secondary level, cooperative education markedly increases the entry-level earnings of minority group members. Moreover,
Appendix A 95 jobs for students in training were readily available except in one city in which the unemployment rate was nearly 15 percent. The effectiveness of job training in industry has been explored, and some of the benefits and drawbacks of job training at the work site have been identified. Little research has been done on this beyond the docu- mentation of trends in the location of training (Wen~g and Wolansky 19729. Very little is known about which tasks are taught most effectively on the job or in school. A third group of instructional methods in vocational education, used in enrichment programs in schools for occupational learning, include the simulations of occupational experience, team teaching, and individual- ized instruction. The job simulation methods offer the means of acquir- ing and practicing job skills in a controlled situation having instructional intervention, pacing for effective learning, minimum real penalties for error, and substantially reduced training costs compared with on-thejob learning. The effectiveness of simulation seems critically dependent upon the aspects of the performance setting being simulated, and the fidelity with which those aspects are simulated (Fitzpatrick and Mornson 1971~. Although most of the research on simulation has been done outside vo- cational education, notably in military and business settings, the evi- dence (for example, McClelland 1970) seems to be that simulation can be effective in vocational instruction. Individualized instruction allows each student to progress in a pro- gram at his or her own pace. Research on individualized instruction in vocational and technical education has demonstrated that some individ- ualized instructional techniques have been effective for specific student groups under specific conditions. However. results are tvoicallv neither ~. ~air ~~--: ~^ conclusive nor general~zable. Esbensen's report (lmpellitteri and Finch 1971) of experiences in Duluth, Minnesota, states, "It is difficult to state with assurance that individualized instruction is indisputably superior to traditional forms of schooling" (p. 21~. Although much of the research concerned with individualized instruc- tion is inconclusive, many vocational education programs are using tuto- rial laboratories to individualize instruction. For example, in Charlotte, North Carolina, an occupational mix program in ten high schools sup- plements the regular vocational courses in business education. Teachers proficient in individualized instruction manage laboratories containing autotutorial materials. Regional occupational centers and programs in the western states have also used individualized instructional laborato- ries to assist students with learning difficulties to attain the learning achievement necessary for entering the regular vocational education programs.
96 Appendix A One kind of instructional approach that is difficult to classify is the residential school that often combines aspects of all three types of in- struction identified above. Warmbrod (1970) describes a dozen residen- tial programs as well as some Job Corps programs. Relatively little re- search has been conducted on these programs, but there is some favor- able evidence concerning graduations, job placements, and other program objectives. Most residential programs did not survive beyond the initial short-term federal funding period. A special case is the Mountain-Plains project at Glasgow Air Force Base, Montana, which has been supported by federal funds since fiscal 1971. The Mountain-Plains project is described by the program's di- rector, Bruce C. Perryman (1975) as a family-oriented, residential pro- gram designed to economically rehabilitate disadvantaged rural families from a six-state region. Programs and services provided for participating families include career guidance; a career development program encom- passing the development of work attitudes and occupational prepara- tion; limited medical, dental, and optical services; a family core curricu- lum that teaches home management, health, consumer education, parent responsibility, and recreation skills; and community and job placement services. Over 900 families have entered the program, including 22.6 per- cent representing minority groups. Project analysts predict the program will be cost-beneficial to society, but some researchers question large expenditures for residential projects when R&D funds are limited. CURRICULUM DEVELOPMENT Curriculum development, demonstration, and research have been listed frequently among federal priorities for vocational education R&D since the passage of the Vocational Education Act of 1963. The federal re- sources made available for curriculum work, augmented by substantial investments by state and local agencies, have resulted in a large number of highly diverse curriculum projects. The development of new curricula does not always result in usable curriculum materials. When contractors or grant recipients have little or no functional relationship to the agencies involved in instruction or teacher preparation, they may develop inappropriate curricula. The test- ing of curriculum materials has sometimes occurred under highly con- trived conditions involving special incentives or preferential treatment for the testing sites but not for the operating programs. Evaluations have rarely assessed the capacity of the curricula to continue as part of a nonexperimental instructional program. Much of the curriculum development in vocational education has
Appendix A 97 been directed toward a small proportion of studerits and instructors in- volved in new occupations because they are said to need special program assistance. However, the result is that the programs with large enroll- ments for example, home economics, business and office education, agriculture, and auto mechanics are not supported by adequate curric- ulum development. Curriculum Content Several studies of vocational students and graduates in the 1 960s indicate little relationship between the pattern of program enrollments and the distribution of job opportunities in the community and found that rela- tively small proportions of vocational graduates obtained jobs directly related to their training. However, since those studies were completed, some progress has been made toward improving both the methods for selecting curriculum content and the relevance of curricula for real job opportunities. Studies to determine the content of curricula to be developed have used both primary and secondary sources. Primary sources noted by Larson (1969) include mail surveys and interviews with teachers, em- ployers, and students; secondary sources include manuals, articles, and textbooks. In addition, Phipps and Evans (1968) note that subject matter is often determined by the opinions of experts. They state that develop- ment "is questionable when no validation studies are conducted to confirm the wisdom and biases of the 'experts'" (p. 372~. The use of expert opinion in the development of curricula is noted by Carpenter and Rodgers (1970) as one of the primary sources for the development of agriculture education curricula. They state (p. 24~: In practice, the typical cumculum builder in agricultural education considers results of a competency study of his own or of another investigator, seeks out expert opinion by formal or informal surveys, and uses experienced teachers to assist in developing a cumculum outline and related teaching materials . . . Some studies relying heavily on primary sources to determine the con- tent of curricula are reported in the Ohio State review and synthesis series. Crawford (Ashmum and Larson 1970) interviewed workers and supervisors to determine critical tasks to be learned by students in dis- tributive (sales occupations) education programs. Crawford's work served as a basis for the development of courses of study and materials for individual use by students. For office occupations, Bangs and Hille- stad analyzed interview responses from data processing managers, em- ployers, teachers, and executives and developed data processing curricu
98 Appendix A la and course outlines (Price and Hopkins 1970~. Similarly, Carter sur- veyed several hundred local office supervisors to identify which tasks should receive more or less emphasis in business occupations curricula (Price and Hopkins 19703. Another approach to improving the correspondence between voca- tional curricula and jobs has been the development of task analysis. Task analysis is a method of examining the various tasks required in a job and identifying their characteristics and the skills required for them. Methods for constructing and analyzing job task inventories, developed by the U.S. Air Force (Christal 1974), have been adapted for application to civilian occupations (for example, Melching and Borcher 1973~. Innova- tive methods have been devised for identifying the technical concepts required for elective perfo~ance of various occupations (Moss et al. 1970~. Computer programs have been developed to perform the data processing required by the new methods (for example, Mead 1972, Sta- cey 1974~. In order to improve the relevance of curricula to the job market, cur- ricula have been developed for new occupations, such as biomedical equipment technician, electro-mechanical technician, laser and electro- optical technician, a variety of allied health occupations, and computer science occupations (Simpson 1975~. Traditional programs have also been revised to correspond more closely with current employment op- portunities. For example, the NOBELS project (Lanham et al. 1972) was designed to develop and keep current a new secondary school curricu- lum in business and office occupations. Data were gathered on the per- formance requirements of new office occupations (Hu~man and Gust 1970) as well as on current jobs; a comprehensive set of educational objectives was prepared for which efficient learning conditions could be devised. Student Needs Ten years ago, the vocational education programs in most schools were limited in variety, and entrance standards were sometimes as severe as for academic programs. Recent reviews of vocational education curricula (Maxwell et al. 1973, Oakleif 1971, Lockette and Davenport 1971, Simp- son 1975) suggest that more curricula now offer a broader range of edu- cational and vocational choices and will accommodate the needs of many more students. Phipps and Evans (1968) list curricula that have been developed for dropout-prone students and for disadvantaged rural youth. Morrison (1970) cites programs to prepare disadvantaged students for health, food,
Appendix A 99 education, and service occupations. Simpson (1975), reporting a trend toward paying more attention to students' characteristics and needs, cites among other curricula a source book developed to assist in devising programs for inmates of correctional institutions, career education mate- rials for Spanish-speaking children, and business management curricula for minorities and disadvantaged learners. Stutz and Merrell (1967) de- scribe the development of a vocational program designed for students in small, isolated, rural schools. The Center for Vocational Education (1975) developed curricula for deaf students and continues to prepare career education materials for them. Curricula also have been completed to prepare Indian students to be advanced electro-mechanical techni- cians (Terry et al. 1975~. In another attempt to meet students' varying needs, individualized curricula have been developed to enable any student to enter a program at a level determined by his or her own capabilities. Each student can then acquire vocational training in an individual sequence that provides preparation for occupations at successively higher levels. Such a program can accept virtually all students and provide each with vocational com- petence at whatever level is permitted by the student's interests, abilities, motivation, and time. Several programs have been undertaken to implement individualized curricula. The pre-engineering technology program, or Richmond Plan (Asbell 1967), employed the basic concept but limited entrance to stu- dents of at least average ability who were underachieving. Project FEAST (Batmale 1966), which adapted the Richmond Plan to food, education, and service technology, accommodated students at all levels of ability and provided a graduated sequence of occupational goals. An attempt was made to use this strategy comprehensively in Project ABLE of the American Institutes for Research and the Quincy, Massachusetts, Public Schools (1964~: individualized curricula were developed in 11 broad vo- cational areas involving over 200 occupations organized into more than 30 sequences. Occupational Adaptability Because individuals can expect to shift occupations several times during their working lives, it is important to design vocational curricula that provide a useful basis for occupational versatility. Phipps and Evans (1968) identify and illustrate several strategies that have been used to determine such curriculum content. The transferability approach at- tempts to identify content with high transfer value (generalizability) for many types and levels of jobs. The competency pattern approach at
100 Appendix A tempts to identify patterns of competencies or skills needed in occupa- tional areas as contrasted with studies of single job titles. The functions of industry approach analyzes those functions from which the education- al needs of workers are deduced. By far, the most commonly used strategy has been the cluster ap- proach, in which learners are prepared for a group or cluster of occupa- tions. The strategy identifies requirements common to several current occupations and includes preparation for these shared requirements in the curriculum (Sjogren and Sahl 1966~. The cluster approach has been used to develop curricula for technicians (Schill and Arnold 1965), office workers (Perkins et al. 1968), building trades workers (Bakamis et al. 1966), construction workers (Frantz 1967), and agricultural and metal workers (Sjogren et al. 1967~. Simpson (1975) reports the development of curricula in each of the 15 occupational clusters identified by USOE. A clustering system having curriculum implications for the comprehensive career education model is reported by Taylor et al. (1972~. Significant methodological and theoretical problems are faced by re- searchers attempting to identify common requirements in existing jobs or to provide preparation for a variety of job opportunities. Sjogren (1971) notes that jobs have most commonly been clustered by using an arbi- trary definition of similarity; this method, although subjective, is none- theless quite reliable (repeatable). Sjogren reports the frequent use of statistical techniques such as factor analysis to define clusters by analyz- ing ratings or other quantified judgments of job or task characteristics. Sjogren (1969) notes that no matter what kinds of measurement and analysis techniques are used, clusters are determined in large part before the analysis, when certain jobs are selected for study and others are not. Any job or set of tasks would probably sort into different clusters de- pending upon the mix of jobs studied. Further, since any job is an arbi- trary collection of tasks that varies from instance to instance, each job would probably sort differently depending on the particular job sites studied. Clusters have not often been studied across skill levels within job hierarchies, although such studies would identify curriculum content important for career progression. Curriculum Integration Gagne (1965) states that the goals of education include satisfaction with work or vocation, responsible citizenship, and participation in a variety of aesthetic experiences. Vocational educators have recognized the need to prepare students for more than just the job skills required for a partic- ular occupation, and they have begun to emphasize the need to integrate
Appendix A 101 vocational and other curriculum elements. Attempts to provide more comprehensive, integrated programs have not usually included the exten- sive analysis and development that seems required for a new curriculum. Three projects illustrate such attempts to produce comprehensive inte- grated curricula. Project ABLE American Institutes for Research and Quincy Public Schools 1964) attempted to develop a full secondary school curriculum to accommodate all students who were not preparing to enter a four-year college program. The project strove to prepare stu- dents for vocational competence, responsible citizenship, and self-fulfill- ment (Morrison and Lecznar 1966~. Numerous difficulties were encoun- tered (Morrison 1968) and the resulting curriculum was neither as com- plete nor as well integrated as was intended. The second project, called Educational System for the 70's or ES '70 (Bushnell 1967, Bushnell and Rubel 1968, E. F. Shelley & Co. 1968), was a larger and more ambitious undertaking by an organization of 17 school systems across the country in cooperation with the U.S. Office of Educa- tion. The goal was to develop a secondary school curriculum from which graduates could choose to enter a four-year college, a junior or commu- nity college, advanced vocational programs, or gainful employment. Ob- jectives for the curriculum, stated as performance skills to be acquired by students, were to be assembled from a variety of sources, including voca- tional and academic education, and consolidated to define the major structure of the trial curriculum. This large, expensive project was dis- continued (during an administrative reorganization of USOE) before work on a substantial portion of its objectives could be initiated. Finally, the career education model programs (Goldhammer and Tay- lor 1972) were attempts to use various settings (home, school, communi- ty, work place, special residence) to integrate and give wider meaning to the elements of an educational program. Different integration strategies were used: infusing career awareness, career exploration, or career prep- aration into existing curricula; and using a life situation (such as a work task) as the vehicle for learning related skills (such as calculation). The models varied in their structure and methods, but each attempted to develop adaptable systems for the integrated learning of important skills. None of these models was permitted to develop as originally planned, and all terminated short of their original objectives (after an administra- tive reorganization in HEW). Even though some of the products and re- sults have been disseminated, no integrated career education curricula are ready to be installed in schools. None of these massive programs has successfully constructed an inte- grated curriculum that has been adopted by others. The failure may be due to the financial costs of such development, to the size and complexi
102 Appendix A ty of the task, to the time required for development, or to practitioners' suspicions of centrally developed curricula. However, curriculum inte- gration is still viewed as a desirable goal. Medium-sized curricula that have been tested on students and revised, and for which teachers have been trained, have been adopted widely. Curriculum Evaluation' A ~_1:~ 4_ ~ _ _ _ /. ~,~ . ~u~g ~o Carson Am, designing curricula involves the setting of training objectives. Pilot tests and evaluations to determine whether ob- jectives are being met have been incorporated into several large-scale curriculum projects. Householder (1972) describes the American Indus- try Project, which developed an instructional program to help students understand basic concepts of industry and which was extensively field tested, evaluated, and revised. Evaluation studies found that students enrolled in this program had more positive attitudes towards its courses than towards others, acquired knowledge of job opportunities in indus- try, and showed greater interest in seeking industrial employment than they had shown prior to exposure to the program. The Industrial Arts Curriculum Project, also described by Household- er (1972), included components of field testing and in-service teacher education as well as curriculum development. Two courses were devel- oped by the project the World of Construction and World of Manufac- turing. Developed materials were field tested throughout the country over a four-year period, evaluated, and revised. Subsequently, the project "attained a new milestone" (p. 20) by making commercially available an instructional system for industrial arts. Householder also cited an evaluation of a project that provided indus- trial education experiences at the secondary, community college, and university level and emphasized the interrelationships between industry and other social institutions. The evaluation showed that students en- rolled in courses in the project improved their attitudes toward school and had better attendance after participation. Despite the positive results of the evaluative research noted in industri- al arts education, Householder notes that "the body of knowledge upon which industrial arts courses is based has not yet been fully defined, categorized, and communicated" (p. 43~. Similar conclusions have been drawn by reviewers of research studies in health occupations, technical education, agricultural education, and home economics education (Hol- loway and Kerr 1969, Phillips and Briggs 1969, Carpenter and Rogers 1970, and Nelson 1970~. Nevertheless, in the Committee's hearings and in interviews, respondents mentioned curriculum projects more consist
Appendix A 103 entry than any other type of vocational education R&D as having had impact on practitioners. LABOR MARKET SUPPLY AND DEMAND INFORMATION Projected labor market supply and demand information in specific occu- pations, particularly at the state and regional levels, can be quite useful in determining the types and amounts of vocational and technical educa- tion required for the future. Kelley et al. (1975) identified more than 300 projection studies over the period 1965-73 that have been based on local, state, and national data. The two general types of demand forecasting techniques are employer surveys and analytic projections, such as trend extrapolation. Kelley et al. state that in the studies they reviewed, 51.4 percent used employer surveys and 48.6 percent used analytic projec- tions (p. 128~. The major problem associated with both methods is that they cannot foresee all the elements that would cause trends to change, create demands in new occupations, or cause old occupations to become obsolete. Two techniques of labor market supply analysis-multitrack and sin- gle-track research-have been discussed by Young et al. (1972~. Multi- track research attempts to evaluate alternative training methods or devel- op data systems for evaluation. For example, Foster studied sources of trained personnel in the construction industry and found that vocational education is not supplying a "significant" number of skilled workers relative to other types of training (Young et al. 1972~. He also reports that on-thejob training was judged by workers to be better than class- room training in helping people acquire skills. Similarly, Horowitz and Hermstadt analyzed workers in the tool- and die-making trade and found that many accomplished craftsmen were high-school dropouts (Young et al. 1972, p. 38~. However, they also found that vocational high school combined with apprenticeship seemed to be highly effective in training workers. Single-track research analyzes a particular type of vocational training, such as apprenticeship, on-thejob training, or military service training. Young et al. (1972) report that a national survey shows that construction, machinist, and tool- and die-skilled workers believe apprenticeship is a helpful way to learn their trades. Several studies indicate that on-thejob training is highly valued by both industry and employees (Young et alp. Studies of labor mobility also help to determine future labor supply. These studies report fairly consistently that a high proportion of second- ary school graduates find and keep jobs in or near the community in which they have attended school. For example, Eninger reports that ap
104 Appendix A proximately 80 percent of a national sample of 1953, 1958, and 1962 trade and industrial graduates had not moved to another city for em- ployment purposes (Young et al. 1972~. Labor market forecasts are most frequently done at state and local levels. Kelley et al. (1975) found that 12.1 percent of the studies are national in scope, 46.3 percent are state forecasts, and 41.6 percent are local. They also report that national fore- casts across all occupations are recent, limited, concerned more with demand than supply, and dominated by the projections program of the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Most other national forecasts reported are related to specific occupations. Kelley et al. conclude their review of labor market forecasting by stat- ing that there are serious limitations in the studies they reviewed. In addition, Kaufman and Brown note that it is almost impossible to pre- dict future supply or demand because of the many external influences on the labor market; many projections have proven to be inaccurate (Price and Hopkins 1970~. The Ohio State monograph ~-~s ~-ev~ew~ng o`;cupa~ona~ research re- ports labor market research in nearly every area of vocational training. In agricultural education, for example, Heady and others have made estimates of labor requirements in farming occupations to 1980 (Carpen- ter and Rodgers 1970~. Studies of farming opportunities, which are pri- marily local in scope, are appropriate because farmers tend to live within 25 miles of the schools they attended. General conclusions drawn from these studies are that aggregate farm employment, perhaps much of it of a marginal type on less productive land, has been declining, as has mar- ginal employment in other sectors of the economy. On the other hand, the work force in nonfarm agricultural occupations is increasing. Many studies conclude that there is also an inadequate supply of off-farm agri- cultural workers (Carpenter and Rodgers 19709. Price and Hopkins (1970) report that studies indicate that the occupa- tional opportunities for business education graduates will continue to grow. Like the research on farming opportunities, local research is most useful to vocational educators since business graduates tend to work close to the schools from which they graduated. Ohio State reviewers also report many local studies in home econom- ics, health, trade and industrial, sales, and technical occupations. In gen- eral, growth is expected in sales occupations, public services, human services, such as social work, and environmental occupations, such as sanitation. Studies of labor market demand for vocational education personnel are of special concern to vocational education. In 1971, Somers reported uncertainties in projections and disagreements about the likelihood of a . . . ..
Appendix A 105 shortage of vocational education teachers in 1975. In the past, forecasters failed to estimate correctly the flexibility and adaptability of the sources supplying instructional personnel. Although reasonably accurate local projections have been made, Somers is critical of the few national projec- tions of teacher supply and demand. He blames the lack of data and inaccurate projection techniques for the fact that various national studies have produced varying estimates of the size of predicted teacher short- ages. Both the quantity and quality of labor market supply data in vocation- al education have improved in the last few years. Many people are trying to improve demand information, which is much more difficult to predict accurately than supply information. Several states have developed and instituted management information systems containing labor market supply and demand data for use in planning vocational education pro- grams. ADMINISTRATION OF VOCATIONAL EDUCATION Studies of the administration of vocational education have been re- viewed by Ralph C. Wenrich (1970) for the Ohio Center for Vocational Education. In federal, state, and local administration, topics of interest include policy making, administrative structures, and program and facili- ty planning, financing, and staffing. Studies of federal policy making have identified changes in past policies and recommended improvements based on the judgments of the researchers. The role of state departments of education in vocational education policy has also been studied. For example, Swanson studied state-level vocational education administra- tion and found that "the primary emphasis was . . . on compliance (checking and regulating) and the secondary consideration was change and leadership" (Wenrich 1970~. Other studies in state policy making, such as Frigiola's study in New Jersey, have provided the basis for rec- ommendations for improving a state's vocational education services and programs Enrich 1970~. There have been few studies of the federal administration of the voca- tional education R&D program. Some state-level studies have attempted to describe the structure and function of area vocational schools or other state vocational programs, but few have analyzed the role of research coordinating units or state departments of education with respect to R&D or vocational education programs. Studies of program planning at the state and local levels are usually preceded by studies of labor market demands. Researchers often attempt to match existing programs with projected labor market needs. For ex
106 . , .. . .~ . Appendix A ample, Hendr~x designed a data collection instrument to determine the labor market needs of the community, the goals of the people, space and equipment ava~iab~ty, and special instructional needs (Wenrich 1970). Recent understaffing at vocational schools has been a problem, and some researchers have attempted to identify new sources of teachers. In Michigan, Messerschmidt studied recruitment and hiring practices and determined that the "primary source of part-time instructors was local business and industry, and attempts to use retired industrial and military personnel were not successful" (Wenrich 1970, p. 35~. Wenrich notes that a high proportion of the projects on administration are surveys involving the use of mail questionnaires. Attempts to generate inflation about administration are improving, but generally lack sophistication. He states (p. 56~: We need controlled experiments, some of which would, of necessity, extend over a period of years and would involve data based upon observation rather than mere opinion. Many researchers, developers, administrators, and practitioners cite the development of management information systems (MISS) as one of the most significant accomplishments of the past ten years of vocational education R&D. John Evans defined educational MISS as systems that "convert data into information of use to managers at different levels, places and times in the decision making process" (Hale 1971, p. 69~. MISS have been developed by several state, regional, and even national organi- zations. For example, the "System for State Evaluation of Vocational Education" (Hale 1971) developed by the Center for Vocational Educa- tion contains data on pupil characteristics, program characteristics, and employment rates. Management reports produced by the MIS can show information such as the ethnic distribution of students by programs. Status reports on students can also be produced, enabling researchers to periodically follow-up students who graduate from or drop out of voca- tional education programs. Generating state-level data about vocational education students and programs is a major task of the RCUS. Some RCUS have developed MISS with federal R&D funds. For example, the Tennessee RCU developed an MIS containing follow-up data and an occuational information system containing descriptions of jobs and vocational or career programs for all grade levels. The Tennessee MIS, developed for reporting purposes, is used to respond to requests for data analyses. This information, along with the RCU'S supply and demand projections, is used in program plan- ning. Researchers have developed state-level vocational guidance sys
Appendix A 107 tems, containing data on job openings obtained through employer sur- veys, and designed to match young people with jobs. Regional management information systems are often more efficient than state-level systems since costs and benefits can be shared by many school districts. Hale (1971) describes the Midwestern States Education- al Information Project, which developed a system for collecting data on facilities, financing, instructional programs, personnel, and students that are comparable among local school districts and among cooperating states. In addition to MISS, other techniques have been developed to facilitate management; for example, trend analysis is used to forecast student en- rollment data. However, adequate data bases and relatively static condi- tions are necessary for trend analysis to be accurate. Hale (1971) states that often expert opinion is more valuable in planning vocational educa- tion programs than trend analysis because experts have experience that enables them to deal with a number of factors that are not formally used in trend analysis. EVALUATION OF VOCATIONAL EDUCATION PROGRAMS The literature describing the evaluation of vocational education pro- grams is discouraging; it yields little useful information for vocational educators. The research designs have used analytic procedures requiring simple quantitative input and have failed to encompass many important educational issues. Evaluations have used research methods that are in- compatible with the complexity of the learning, teaching, and adminis- trative situations. Brief reviews of what are considered to be some of the best evaluations of vocational education in the last ten years are presented in this section. The specific criterion variables studied are vocational graduates' knowl- edge about occupations, their job readiness, job satisfaction, and earn- ~ngs. Occupational Information The amount of occupational information possessed by people entering the labor force may be an important determinant of future success. Decker Associates (1967) found that, compared with students in academ- ic or general curricula, vocational graduates know slightly less about occupations and are more likely to name skilled trades as the best jobs known to them. Other students cite professional, technical, and manage- rial jobs as best. However, since Decker failed to control for socioeco
108 Appendix A nomic factors, the observed differences may be due to the differing back- grounds of the students rather than to the curricula in which they were enrolled. Using data on male high school graduates who did not attend college, Grasso (1972) found no evidence to indicate that students from vocational, general, and academic curricula differ in their knowledge about occupations. Since Grasso controlled for variables such as apti- tude, family background, grades, and work experience, his conclusions are probably more valid than Decker's. Although career education emphasizes knowledge about occupations, some vocational educators doubt that it is a valid measure of program success, since it may not be directly related to the quality or aporonriate- ness of curricula. Job Readiness of Vocational Graduates ~A ~A Some researchers expect that a vocational graduate will be ready for the responsibilities of a particular job without further training, so that a program can be considered successful if its graduates infrequently desire immediate further training. Grasso (1972) found that approximately 85 percent of all high school graduates who have not attended college express a desire for additional training. Among whites but not blacks, nonvocational graduates are more likely than vocational graduates to feel a lack of education or train- ing. It is not surprising that academic students most prefer to attend college. However, for both blacks and whites, there is almost no differ- ence in the desired type of additional training between the general and the vocational graduates. Thus, one might question the view that voca- tional education graduates regard themselves as better prepared for em- ployment. Grasso found little variation among whites from different high school programs in the kind of training they seek (which included business col- lege, company school, apprenticeship, military service, and others). How- ever, the types of post-secondary training actually received by the differ- ent graduates does vary; academic graduates report twice as much pro- fessional or technical training as graduates of the other programs, where- as commercial students report greater managerial training, and vocation- al students more skilled manual training. It appears that blacks partici- pate in additional training to a lesser extent than whites. Kaufman and Lewis (1968) found that almost 90 percent of the voca- tional graduates said their programs had made a "real effort" to prepare them for employment. This figure appears less impressive when one con- siders that almost 60 percent of the academic students said the same
Appendix A 109 about their programs, which put less emphasis on preparing students for immediate employment. It must be noted that job readiness may have validity only as a short- term goal. All too often specific training for a job immediately after graduation becomes less valuable when jobs change or a student's or worker's interests change. Job Satisfaction Kaufman et al. (1967) found no significant differences in job satisfaction reported by graduates of vocational, academic, and general high school programs in the Northeast. Eninger (1965, 1968) found that trade and industry graduates have greater job satisfaction than do those from non- vocational curricula. Job satisfaction tends to be greater among those whose jobs relate to their training. Garbin et al. (1970) found no difference between vocational and non- vocational programs in the degree to which their graduates report being hired at anticipated levels, achieving expected income, or"coping" with jobs. Grasso found that both black and white academic graduates and white commercial graduates hold more favorable career positions than do others, and that vocational graduates do not differ from general cur- riculum graduates. White academic and commercial graduates are found to have higher overall job satisfaction than graduates of the general cur- riculum, while the latter group is not significantly different from voca- tional graduates. However, for blacks, job satisfaction, which is much lower than for whites, does not vaIy significantly with their curricula. E. arnlngs Much of the research on the elects of vocational education programs compares the earnings of vocational education graduates with either gen- eral or academic curricula graduates. Differences in starting pay and in the progression of pay with increased experience are often investigated. However, since many of the studies do not control for variables related to both the choice of high school curricula and measures of labor market success, their conclusions are suspect. In a national study of the graduating classes of 1953, 1958, and 1962, Eninger (1965, 1968) found different results at different points in time. For example, he reported that the extent to which training is related to a graduate's job seems to affect wage rates in some samples but not in others. Eninger's conclusions are further confounded because he failed to use available control variables.
110 Appendix A Persons et al. (1968) performed a cost-benefit study of a farm business management program conducted by public schools in Minnesota to im- prove both technical and entrepreneurial skills of farm operators. Criteri- on variables, which were the farm operator's labor earnings, returns to capital and family labor, and total farm sales, were adjusted for yearly fluctuations in annual farm income. Persons et al. found that benefits to both the individual participating farmers and the community outweighed direct and indirect costs. The study resulted in considerable growth of the farm business management program and in state legislation for pro- gram support. Two recent studies of vocational education graduates featured special attempts to assess the effects of education on future earnings. Stromsdor- fer (1972) analyzed the National Longitudinal Survey data for both 1966 and 1968. All male, out-of-school youths with widely varying amounts of formal education-were treated as a single group. He chose to indi- cate annual income by multiplying earnings of the survey week by 52, thus reflecting differently from other researchers the influences of over- time, job change, multiple jobs, and time not worked. Stromsdorfer found no significant differences across curricula in the 1966 data, but in 1968 he found that former vocational students were earning about $400 more per year than academic graduates and approximately $275 per year more than the general curriculum graduates. Grasso (1972) investigated the effects of curricula on the hourly rate of pay. For black males, he found no significant curricular differences; even work experience and post-secondary school training did not help to ex- plain differing wage rates among blacks. For white males, curricular di- fferences were not found to be related to the starting wage rates, but white male vocational graduates apparently benefited more from addi- tional training than did graduates from other curricula. Follow-Up Studies At least two basic kinds of information to serve two different purposes can be collected in student follow-up studies: students' opinions about their programs can be used directly to alter the programs, and data on the students' performance (employment information) can be used to evaluate the success of the programs. Allen (1975) collected both types of data in his three-year follow-up study of 364 California vocational grad- uates. Allen overcame a common problem of follow-ups, locating the students, by using addresses supplied by the Department of Motor Vehi- cles, thereby maintaining contact with 97 percent of the study group. At the end of the 1973-75 period, Allen found that 75 percent of the respon
Appendix A 111 dents were working, and 72 percent had jobs related to their high school vocational training. Seventy percent said the high school vocational training was helpful in their present jobs, and 88 percent would recom- mend vocational training to other students. Fifty percent had enrolled in advanced training, and 49 percent had had additional training on the job. When respondents were asked about what changes they would re- commend in the program, 71 percent of the respondents recommended more applied practice; 66 percent, more job-related information, and 67 percent, better help in job placement. Most seemed satisfied with their teachers. Allen concludes (p. 25~: "There is no doubt that follow-up studies can provide schools with data and information necessary for in- structional modification and improvement."