Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Adult learners' perceptions of their employers' leadership behaviors and their own readiness for self-directed learning
by Mayhew, Joyce A., Ed.D., Indiana Wesleyan University, 2008, 180; 3344706
Abstract (Summary)

This study employed a quantitative research design to gather and analyze data pertaining to adult learners’ perceptions of their employers’ transformational leadership behaviors and their own perceived readiness for self-directed learning. The participants in the study were working adult learners at a private midwest university. Leadership and adult learning theories formed the theoretical and conceptual foundation for this research study.

It was proposed that transformational leadership is related to self-directed learning readiness and knowledge of the results of this study will assist leaders with building learning organizations. The Multifactor Leadership Questionnaire (MLQ) was used to identify and measure adult learners’ perceptions of their employers’ transformational leadership behaviors. The Learning Preference Assessment (LPA) was used to identify and measure adult learners’ perceived readiness for self-directed learning.

The demographic survey was used to measure adult learner characteristics and continuing education support methods offered by the adult learners’ employers were used to identify and summarize the characteristics in this research study and the sample from the Institute of Professional Development (IPD) study to determine generalizability of the results from this study to other working adult learners.

A Pearson correlation coefficient set at an alpha value of .05 or confidence level of 95% was utilized to test the null hypothesis and indicated no statistically significant relationship existed between transformational leadership and self-directed learning readiness, thus the researcher did not reject the null hypothesis.

To further determine if self-directed learning readiness could result from other factors (e. g, degree type (level), field of study, barriers, the environment, and continuing education support); multiple simple linear regressions were applied and the results of the analyses indicated the removal of barriers and an environment conducive to learning (valances) were the only predictors of self-directed learning readiness as perceived by adult learners in this study.

The implications of this study indicated leaders must provide continuing education support and create an environment conducive to learning. To enhance or increase the creativity, innovativeness, and learning capacity of the workforce, leaders must remove barriers that interfere with learning and create the ability for organizations to become learning organizations.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Drury, Sharon
Commitee: Fowler, Dale, Tweedell, Cynthia
School: Indiana Wesleyan University
Department: Organizational Leadership
School Location: United States -- Indiana
Source: DAI-A 70/02, Dissertation Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Management, Adult education
Keywords: Adult learners, Perceptions, Private university, Quantitative research, Self-directed learning, Transformational leadership
Publication Number: 3344706
ISBN: 9781109033809
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