A comparison of career technical education -- 16 career pathway high school participants with non-participants on academic achievement, school engagement, and development of technical skills

Edith Aimee Orozco, University of Texas at El Paso

Abstract

The objective of this research was to compare Career Technical Education-16 Career Pathway high school participants with non-participants on academic achievement, development of technical skills and school engagement. Academic achievement was measured by Exit Level Math and English Language Arts Texas Assessment of Knowledge and Skills (TAKS) 2008-2009 scale scores. Development of technical skills and school engagement was examined through a developed survey using the High School Survey of Student Engagement (HSSSE) as a reference. TAKS scale scores employed to measure academic achievement was obtained from secondary data and perceptions regarding development of skills and school engagement were obtained through students’ response of survey who attend high school institutions in a border city.^ A non-experimental quantitative design was used as the study did not administer any type of treatment (Slavin, 2007). Descriptive Statistics are presented to provide demographic information regarding the population and sample used in the research study. Analysis of Co Variance (ANCOVA) test was applied to compare mean scale Exit Level Math and ELA TAKS scores of students in Programs of Study (POS) and those not enrolled in Programs of Study (Non-POS). Survey response data was collected to analyze proportion differences of students in POS and Non-POS perceptions of school engagement and development of technical skills.^ Literature regarding educational movements from the 1800s to present, economic movements, career technical education’s role, and accounts of experiences with the 16 – Career Pathway Curriculum initiative was organized to provide a sequence of educational events that lead to the purpose, results, and conclusions of this research.^ In assessing the outcome of data, the ANCOVA test is suggestive that POS participants scored significantly higher than Non-POS students in the Exit Level Math and ELA TAKS while controlling for ethnicity, socio-economic, status, gender, and campus. Furthermore, high school seniors who voluntarily participated in this research survey instrument were composed of students enrolled in POS and those not enrolled. POS respondents perceive themselves more engaged in school than Non-POS respondents. In regards to technical skills, POS respondents perceive to have developed more technical skills and confidence in obtaining a job after high school.^ Results of analysis show positive outcomes for students enrolled in programs of study, but limitations do exist in this study. Secondary data obtained by school district did not include particular variables that may have an effect on student performance on standardized exams. Furthermore, the number of program of study survey respondents was substantial than non-programs of study respondents. Hence, this study does not make any inferences regarding causality between CTE – 16 Career Pathway Curriculum, academic achievement, school engagement, and development of skills. Regardless of the study’s limitations, results are motivating and merit further investigation.^

Subject Area

Education, Curriculum and Instruction|Education, Higher|Education, Vocational

Recommended Citation

Orozco, Edith Aimee, "A comparison of career technical education -- 16 career pathway high school participants with non-participants on academic achievement, school engagement, and development of technical skills" (2010). ETD Collection for University of Texas, El Paso. AAI3426850.
http://digitalcommons.utep.edu/dissertations/AAI3426850

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