Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - NSU Access Only

Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Center for the Advancement of Education


Northeast Wisconsin Vocational, Technical and Adult Education (NWVTAE) District employed 1200 part-time teachers of adults to teach adult and continuing education courses offered throughout the seven county district to neatly 90,000 participants during fiscal year 1981. The problem was a lack of organized in-service education for part-time teachers of adults throughout the District. The purpose of this study was to develop a model for an in-service education plan for part-time teachers to improve instructional quality. Surveys were conducted of part-time teachers and administrators of teachers of adults to gather data to reach the objectives of the study. The major objectives were to identify needs in preparation of part-time teachers of adults; identify attitudes and opinions of teachers and administrators about pre-service and in-service programs; identify staff development topics of interest; and to develop a plan for in-service education for part-time teachers. The survey instruments were initially developed with items selected based on a review of the literature. The content validity of both survey instruments was subjected to review by a panel of experts and a field test sample. The survey of teachers was completed by 95 percent (215) of the part-time teachers in the NWVTAE District teaching at one specific major starting time for adult and continuing education classes. Forty-three administrative staff completed the survey of administrators of teachers of adults. The data from the survey of part-time teachers were used to develop a profile of the characteristics of part-time teachers of adults; a summary of attitudes and opinions of teachers about in-service programs; a summary of staff development topics of interest to part-time teachers; and perception of the importance of staff development activities. The survey of administrators provided data regarding attitudes and opinions of administrators about pre-service and in-service programs for part-time teachers. In addition, a comparison of selected results from the survey of teachers and the survey of administrators was developed. It was concluded that there is a need for in-service education to contribute to the quality of adult education offerings in the NWVTAE District. The majority of teachers can be described as working outside the field of education full-time and teaching part-time. Almost 90 percent indicated they would be willing to participate in an in-service activity. Preferences were for in-service offerings in the fall of the year on week nights Monday through Thursday, and located in own educational institution or community facility. Staff development topics of interest indicated a high level of interest in the majority of topics listed in the survey forms. Overall results of surveys of teachers and administrators were supportive of each other. The major recommendation also constituted the plan for in-service education for part-time teachers, which was to implement a district-wide in-service education program according to the following guidelines based on a review of the literature and results of the surveys. The plan for in-service education should be implemented with the full support of the District Board, administrative staff, and an advisory committee. The program planned can be characterized as ongoing; involving participants in identifying needs and planning objectives; and instructed by competent teachers with similar responsibilities at the same teacher level ad the participants with skills in group facilitation. In addition, this model plan may be described as providing adult educators with experiential learning activities that can readily be integrated into teaching methodology; flexible to meet varied needs, interests and schedules of participating adult educators; focusing on self-directed learning; contributing to sensitivity of instructors to emotional states of adult learner; and including evaluation procedures which focus on objectives; involve all participants and are an integral part of the activity.

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