Use Of The Council For The Advancement Of Standards In Higher Education (Cas) By Career Services Directors At Two-Year Public Community Colleges

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Community College Leadership Program


Doctor of Education

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The purpose of this study was to determine how professional standards are being used at two-year public community colleges by career services directors. In addition, by determining if the characteristics of career services directors and their institutions are associated with the use of the Council for the Advancement of Standards in Higher Education (CAS) at two-year public community colleges, this study addressed the problem related to the lack of research regarding the impact of professional standards on assessing program and professional accountability. One hundred seventy career services directors at two-year community colleges in the 50 states and the District of Columbia, who were listed by the American Association of Community Colleges (AACC) as being among the publicly funded colleges, were surveyed to determine their awareness of CAS standards, the barriers to using CAS standards, and their use of and satisfaction with CAS standards. The results of the career services director's survey responses were analyzed using Statistical Package for the Social Sciences Software (SPSS) to examine the opinions, and behaviors of career services directors at two-year public community colleges based upon the independent and dependent variables. Multivariate Analysis of Variance was the primary statistical procedures used to analyze the data and test the null hypotheses. The results of the analysis revealed that there are operational barriers, which potentially impact the awareness and use of CAS standards by career services directors at two-year public community colleges. The findings also revealed that directors of career services programs, who use the CAS standards, are mostly using them as a reference guide and to evaluate, review, and strategically plan. Thus, those directors who are using CAS standards (rules in use), as theorized in this study, are using the standards to reveal accountability for performance. A reflective review of the study's results produced recommendations for practices, policy, and future research.