High school counselors have a significant role in guiding students during their college decision making process, yet they are typically not an intended audience of community college marketing efforts and little is known about their perceptions of community colleges or how those perceptions influence their guidance regarding pathways to higher education. The purpose of this qualitative case study was to examine high school counselors' perceptions of community colleges through the lens of Perception theory and to discover the factors that contribute to those perceptions and the role perceptions play on their advisement practices.
This study contributes to the existing literature regarding perceptions of community colleges. Through case study research, 3 themes emerged: (1) personal experiences with community colleges, (2) the perceived quality of education and marketing materials, and (3) the perceptions of community college as a primary pathway to higher education. These themes were explored in terms of their influence on the perceptions held by high school counselors and the findings indicate that personal experiences and interactions with community colleges do help to create perceptions and that perceptions are ever-evolving based upon these experiences. Implications for policy and practice and recommendations for researching ways to create positive personal interactions with the community college are offered.
Community college educators and high school counselors work toward a similar goal of providing opportunities to students through education. Creating a culture of positive personal interactions for students, potential students and influencers of the college choice process should be a deliberate and integrated part of marketing and outreach efforts by the college.
|Advisor:||Vega, William M.|
|School:||California State University, Long Beach|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||DAI-A 73/02, Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Community college education, Educational evaluation, School counseling, Higher education|
|Keywords:||College choice, Community college, Marketing materials, School counselor|
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