Dissertation Abstract

Predictors of teaching styles and the adult education philosophies of instructors of radiologic technology programs

Publication Number:  AAT3241987
Author:  Willson, Angela.
School:  Touro University International
Date:  2006
Pages:   162
Subject:  Health education, Radiology

Instructors of Radiologic Technology teach student who will become an integral part of the health care team that diagnosis and treats illness and disease. The awareness of instructional practices and beliefs can motivate an instructor to seek consistency between the two and to seek improvement. This analytical research was conducted to investigate prevalent teaching styles and personal educational philosophies employed by instructors of Radiologic Technology Programs and to understand which variables influence both. Teaching style was evaluated by use of the Principles of Adult Learning Scale (PALS) that evaluates adult learning principles, which are congruent with collaborative teaching methods referred to as student-centered compared with the traditional method of teaching, referred to as teacher-centered. Personal educational philosophy was determined by use of The Philosophy of Adult Education Inventory (PAEI) which identifies five philosophies that describe an instructor as being: liberal (expert), behavioral (manager), progressive (organizer), humanistic (facilitator), radical (coordinator) or a combination. Gender, full-time/part-time instruction, number of years teaching, professional development and type of teaching institution were evaluated as predictors.

Two hundred and twenty-two instructors responded to this study. Results of the PAEI showed a preference for the Progressive philosophy followed by the Behaviorist philosophy which demonstrates a preference for a student-centered approach to teaching. Scores on PALS showed a strong preference for a teacher-centered style of instruction. In several areas there were significant differences found within the demographic variables on the PALS, but none so strong as to clearly state one is overall more student-centered than another. Analysis revealed no relationship to the demographic variables and the preferred educational philosophy. There was no correlation between preferred teaching style and educational philosophy.

This study concluded the instructors who responded have a student-centered educational philosophy preference which is consistent with literature; however, overall teaching style indicates they prefer a teacher-centered approach. There is a lack of congruency between the instructor's educational beliefs and teaching methods. Respondents with professional development in teaching and learning methodologies tended to be less teacher-centered than those with no formal training. It was recommended that instructors of radiologic technology become more aware of the needs of the adult student and for The Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology to include course work in teaching and learning methodologies as a requirement for didactic instructors.

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