The Effectiveness of Ten Years of Values Education: A Case Study of a Small, Private Comprehensive Institution
In 2002-2003, a small, private Master's I comprehensive institution located in western central Pennsylvania initiated a self-study process that focused on assessing the effectiveness of the three major components of its general education program: values, skills, and knowledge. This paper discusses the methodology and results of a study designed to assess the degree to which the "values" component of this program was perceived to have been assimilated after a ten-year period of implementation. The findings indicated that the degree to which "values" objectives and strategies are implemented is not necessarily related to their perceived importance. The results of this study have important practical implications for educational institutions embarking upon or engaged in values education. While these findings show that the "values" objectives and strategies of this university's general education program have been unevenly implemented over a period of time, they also imply that values infusion may require some time to achieve. In this case, the perceived degree of importance of the "values" strategies not fully implemented was quite high, indicating a strong alignment with institutional "core" values and implying that these strategies should not necessarily be abandoned, though additional strategies may be developed. Finally, as this study did not examine the factors that may have impeded the objectives and strategies that were not implemented satisfactorily, additional research is needed in this area.
Keywords: Values Education, Values Assimilation, General Education
Ms. Patricia B. Serotkin
Director of Library and Academic Information Services, Division of Academic Affairs Pasquerilla Library , Saint Francis University
Professor, Administration and Leadership Studies, College of Education, Indiana University of Pennsylvania