Dissertations and Theses @ UNI


Open Access Dissertation


Minorities--Education (Higher)--Iowa; Technical education--Iowa; Vocational education--Iowa;


A study involving minority students was undertaken to ascertain and validate pertinent variables that influenced their enrollment in the postsecondary vocational-technical education programs in the state of Iowa. The study was also used to determine: (a) whether there were significant differences in the perceptions of postsecondary vocational-technical education minority students and vocational-technical-minded minority high school seniors on the one hand, and college-minded, vocational-technical-minded, and non-college/non-vocational-technical-minded minority high school seniors on the other; (b) whether the identified variables had comparable influences on postsecondary minority students to what the students thought; (c) the sources from which minority students learned the most about the programs; and (d) whether the students had positive or negative opinions about the programs.

Two different populations of students were used: postsecondary vocational-technical education minority students and minority high school seniors. The samples, chosen on the basis of minority population availability, included all postsecondary minority students enrolled in vocational-technical education programs in seven Iowa community institutions, and minority high school seniors enrolled in the Waterloo, Iowa school system. The subjects were surveyed in the spring semester of 1989.

It was found that the following factors had great influence on minority student enrollment in vocational-technical education programs of study: role models, support groups, ethnic culture on the school's campus, program requirements, fear of failure, counseling services, and accessibility to an institution. The results also showed that postsecondary minority students and technical-minded minority high school seniors exhibited few significant differences in their perceptions regarding the programs, but the three groups of high school seniors perceived the programs similarly. The scores of postsecondary minority students on their opinions of what would be ideal influences on their enrollment were significantly higher than the actual influences. This suggested that the students would like to be influenced more by the factors. Most of the postsecondary students and high school seniors learned about the programs from high school counselors/teachers, friends, recruiters, parents, by visiting schools, and by reading college literature. The results also showed that an overwhelmingly large majority of the students were interested with the programs and had positive opinions about them.

Year of Submission


Degree Name

Doctor of Industrial Technology


Department of Industrial Technology

First Advisor

E. A. Dennis, Advisor

Second Advisor

Ronald D. Bro, Co-Advisor

Date Original


Object Description

1 PDF file (x, 206 pages)



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