This study was to identify the factors in students attitudes to their technical education and to determine if their work experience affects these attitudes. The population studied were students of the Pathology, Biology and Geoscience Certificate courses in A.C.T. TAFE colleges. Students comments previously observed, were used as a basis for developing a semantic differential using twenty bipolar adjectives and this was subjected to factor analysis to determine the nature of the students’ attitudes. The results were interpreted as indicating that students’ attitudes contained two factors. The first factor was how difficult students found aspects of the course and the second factor was how relevant students found aspects of the course. Students’ attitudes to five aspects of the course were measured using these two scales of difficulty and relevance. These scales were subjected to t-test and analysis of variance to make comparisons between dichotomous groups of the population which could have developed different attitudes as a result of different work experience. The general conclusions from the study were that students believe their technician education is less relevant the more work experience they accumulate. The attitude change is related to the amount of work experience, but not to the type of work experience. This is generally true no matter how the students are divided on the basis of work experience. The difficulty factor indicated that students with technician work experience found the courses easier than students without technician work experience.
|Date of Award||1981|