Date of Award

6-18-2011

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ded)

Department

Professional Studies in Education

First Advisor

Monte Tidwell, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

George Bieger, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Anne Creany, Ed.D.

Abstract

Nursing educators face the challenge of meeting the needs of a multi-generational classroom. The reality of having members from the Veteran and Baby Boomer generations in a classroom with Generation X and Y students provides an immediate need for faculty to examine students’ teaching method preferences as well as their own use of teaching methods. Most importantly, faculty must facilitate an effective multi-generational learning environment. Research has shown that the generation to which a person belongs is likely to affect the ways in which he/she learns (Hammill, 2005). Characterized by its own attitudes, behaviors, beliefs, and motivational needs, each generation also has distinct educational expectations. It is imperative, therefore, that nurse educators be aware of these differences and develop skills through which to communicate with the different generations, thereby reducing teaching/learning problems in the classroom. This is a quantitative, descriptive study that compared the teaching methods preferred by different generations of associate degree nursing students with the teaching methods that the instructors actually use. The research study included 289 participants; 244 nursing student participants and 45 nursing faculty participants from four nursing departments in colleges in Pennsylvania. Overall, the results of the study found many statistically significant findings. The results of the ANOVA test revealed eight statistically significant findings among Generation Y, Generation X and Baby boomers. The preferred teaching methods included: lecture, self-directed learning, web-based course with no class meetings, important for faculty to know my name, classroom structure, know why I am learning what I am learning, learning for the sake of learning and grade is all that matters. Lecture was found to be the most frequently used teaching method by faculty as well as the most preferred teaching methods by students. Overall, the support for a variety of teaching methods was also found in the analysis of the data.

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