Graduation Year

2010

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Ed.D.

Degree Granting Department

Adult, Career, and Higher Education

Major Professor

Donald Dellow, Ed.D.

Co-Major Professor

Jim Eison, Ph.D.

Committee Member

Robert Sullins, Ed.D.

Committee Member

Cheryl Fante, Ed.D.

Keywords

community college baccalaureate, post-secondary education, Theory of Planned Behavior, faculty perceptions, Florida community colleges

Abstract

An increasing number of community colleges in the United States are becoming baccalaureate-granting institutions. Proponents of the community college baccalaureate (CCB) argue that the CCB provides students with access to higher education, while others argue the CCB will compromise the community college's core values.

The purpose of this study is to explore faculty members' intention to support the CCB transition. Ajzen's Theory of Planned Behavior provides the theoretical framework for the study. The theory assumes that changes in behavior are intentional and, therefore, can be planned. This theory posits that attitudes, subjective (social) norms, and perceived behavioral control predict intentions to support a behavior and, ultimately, to behave in a certain way.

Full-time faculty members from two community colleges in Florida were invited to participate in the Web-based survey; 95 of the 317 faculty members invited to participate in the study chose to complete the survey, representing a 30% response rate. Pearson product-moment correlations were calculated among the direct measures and their underlying beliefs indicate significant relationships among (a) attitude and behavioral beliefs (r = .46, p = .01) and (b) subjective norms and normative beliefs (r = .48, p = .01). Correlation analysis among the direct measures and behavioral intention indicate significant relationships among (a) attitude and behavioral beliefs (r = .82, p = .01), (b) subjective norms and normative beliefs (r = .22, p = .05), and (c) perceived behavioral control and behavioral intention (r = .34, p = .01).

The multiple linear regression analysis indicated the linear combination of attitude, subjective norms and perceived behavioral control account for 69% of the variability in faculty members' intention to support the CCB transition, with greatest the contribution from perceived behavioral control, (b = .87), followed by attitude (b = .22), and subjective norms contributing the least (b = .05). The findings from this study can be used to reflect upon CCB transitions that have already occurred or are in process. In addition, the findings can inform future efforts by community colleges to develop more effective and efficient processes for making the transition to CCB institutions. Lastly, the findings provide insight of the CCB transition from a faculty members' perspective, as well as to contribute to existing literature on the theory of planned behavior.

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