Dissertation Abstract

Examining Stages in Curriculum Change: Implementation of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (Cam)

Publication Number:  AAT3142921
Author:  Verhovsek, Ester L.
School:  West Virginia University
Date:  2003
Pages:  197
Subject:  Higher Education, School Administration

The practice of medicine is changing radically and there is a substantial gap in the practice of medicine and the current curricular models used. As higher education faculty attempt major curriculum transformations, it is crucial to examine the various influences and their ability to progress from the initiation stage to adoption. The purpose of this study was to identify the external and internal influences that most affected the successful transition from the initiation to the adoption of a CAM curriculum change. These influences were examined within the context of complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) so administrators and faculty will have a stronger understanding of which influences that are most vital to address, in order to reach the adoption phase. Secondly, this study identified which incentives and which obstacles had a significantly greater effect on faculty's motivation to change to the CAM curriculum. Lastly, this study identified which diffusion channels led to significantly greater effects on the adoption of CAM. The population for this study consisted of administrators and faculty working at one of the six institutions that received the CAM Education Project Grant sponsored by the National Institutes of Health. A survey questionnaire was distributed to a nonrandom list of full-time and part-time, tenured and non-tenured faculty and administrators directly involved in the planning and implementation of this specific curricular change. A paired t-test was utilized to determine which influence had a greater effect on the initiation, screening, and adoption phases of curriculum change. An ANOVA and TUKEY HSD post hoc analysis was computed to determine which influences were significantly greater. Participants rated grant funding through NIH as a significantly greater external influence. An ANOVA and TUKEY HSD was computed to determine if any incentives and if any obstacles had a significantly greater influence on faculty motivation to change. This analysis revealed that faculty were more likely to participate in the curriculum change process if they were recognized and supported by their institution and the greatest obstacles were limited financial resources and release time.

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