An appraisal of the practicum experience in administration and supervision

Sharon W Walker, Tennessee State University

Abstract

The present study was undertaken to appraise practica in administration and supervision of departments of education for purposes of determining the value of these programs for participants as administrative and supervisory candidates, and for identifying potential areas for improvement. The Practicum in Administration and Supervision at Austin Peay State University, Clarksville, Tennessee, was selected as the specific program for study from which results might be generalized. The instrument used was a questionnaire entitled "An Appraisal of the Practicum Experience in Administration and Supervision at Austin Peay State University." The sample consisted of all ninety-six individuals who had completed the practicum since 1980 at either the M.A. or Ed.S. levels for endorsement as principal, supervisor, or superintendent.^ The study was designed to test a number of hypotheses pertaining to (1) readiness for administration, (2) the relationship between level of responsibility and perceived value of practicum activities, (3) the differences in perception between the subgroups male and female, and (4) a comparison of administrative readiness as shown by results of the 1987 practicum evaluation, with administrative readiness as shown by results of a 1980 evaluation.^ Conclusions based on findings indicated that the practicum experience had been established as an integral part of the university's preparation program. Readiness to assume an administrative position based on the practicum was rated from more than adequate to competent. This perception was significantly higher than that of readiness based on formal classroom training. This finding indicated that the practicum had become that significant factor in readiness maintained by much of the related literature.^ The mean levels of responsibility and consequently perceived value of the eight practicum activity areas were consistently well above the median of 3.0. High positive correlations were found between level of responsibility and perceived value of these activities.^ Significant differences were found between males and females on a number of items: (1) on perceived readiness to assume an administrative position based on both the practicum experience and formal classroom training; and (2) on perception of the practicum as a vehicle for promotion.^ In terms of suggestions for improvement of the program, 79.17 percent of practicum students felt that the program should remain essentially as it is, but with some consideration to more university seminars, more frequent contacts with the university supervisor, and a better method of assignment. These findings were all consistent with those in related literature. ^

Subject Area

Education, Administration

Recommended Citation

Sharon W Walker, "An appraisal of the practicum experience in administration and supervision" (1988). ETD Collection for Tennessee State University. Paper AAI9017214.
http://digitalscholarship.tnstate.edu/dissertations/AAI9017214

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