Date on Master's Thesis/Doctoral Dissertation


Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph. D.

Department (Legacy)

Department of Leadership, Foundations, and Human Resource Education

Committee Chair

Keedy, John L.

Author's Keywords

Technology; Assessment; Efficacy; College ready; Career ready; high-risk


Information technology--Study and teaching (Secondary); College preparation programs; Academic achievement


Career and Technical Education (CTE) has a long and rich history of achievement among diverse populations. Two recent events have added to the complexity of CTE. First, the accountability movement forces traditional programs to show growth and achievement with students. Accountability trends affect the content and delivery of almost all programs. Perhaps more significantly, measureable performance is increasingly becoming tied into program funding with CTE programs. Second, while CTE in general has enjoyed a long history in secondary education, an emerging subcomponent is gaining attention. Information Technology (IT) classes have been present in secondary institutions for over 30 years. Business, industry, and government organizations, however, have been actively searching for more standardized programs that deliver a full supply of highly skilled, IT capable individuals. Over 1000 IT certifications exist, many available at the secondary level (Randell & Zirkle, 2005). Traditionally, most IT training has occurred in technical and other post-secondary academic institutions. Recent pressures, however, are forcing certification requirements downward to secondary institutions. Career and college readiness standards, as well as national, state, and local accountability initiatives are influencing many aspects of high school certification programs. Little is known, however, about the short and long term effectiveness of these programs and with what populations. It is the purpose of this study to examine the primary and secondary effects of IT certification curricula on the self efficacy of a diverse sample of high school IT certification students. v