Date of Award

1980

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)

Abstract

The purpose of the study was to develop a curriculum for inservice training of Extension agents involved in animal science work. Selected aspects of curriculum and learning theory furnished the basis for a curriculum model applicable to the work area of animal science. The curriculum was derived from inputs obtained from Extension specialists in animal science, Extension agents doing livestock work and selected animal science disciplines. Curriculum disciplines included: (1) livestock management, (2) nutrition, (3) marketing, (4) breeding and physiology, and (5) meat technology. An analysis of agent cognitive ability established the agent's educational requirements. Thirty-two concepts in the animal science disciplines were identified and rated by specialists according to their relevance to animal science work. Agents rated the same concepts in terms of clientele need and desirabilty for self-improvement. All concepts were highly rated and included in the curriculum. The present cognitive ability of Extension agents doing animal science work was measured as mean percentage scores attained on test items associated with each discipline concept. The average overall score was 48.1 percent. The highest score was achieved in the discipline of breeding and physiology and the lowest in meat technology. The nutrition, livestock management, and marketing mean scores were equal and fell into an intermediate level between breeding and physiology and meat technology. Agent cognitive ability was measured at the knowledge level and at a higher-than-knowledge level. Mean scores were generally higher for the knowledge level of cognition, as anticipated. Analysis of variance of cognitive ability of agents by discipline, cognitive level, and educational background revealed significant mean score differences within these variables. There was also a highly significant discipline and cognitive level interaction which implied that mean score differences occurred between cognitive levels within disciplines. Extension specialists estimated the level of cognitive ability expected of agents doing animal science work. The discrepancy between expected and present agent cognitive ability emphasized educational needs and suggested discipline and concept priorities in the curriculum. The curriculum reported in the study is extensive and comprehensive of the major animal science content areas. It represents a source of educational objectives, discipline concepts, learning experiences and evalution procedures for devising and implementing an in-service training program for Extension agents doing animal science work.

Pages

157

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