Karen Muñoz

Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Jeris, Laurel

Degree Name

Ed.D. (Doctor of Education)

Legacy Department

Department of Counseling, Adult and Higher Education


Allied health personnel--Education (Continuing education)--Middle West


Health care professionals are challenged to provide service and care in a changing environment. New information is available at increasingly rapid rates as research and technology impact health care delivery. Continuing professional education providers have a responsibility to identify effective mechanisms of continuing education that address performance improvement goals and positive health care outcomes. Studies suggest that traditional continuing professional education activities such as conference lectures are not effective in changing performance of health care providers. Research is needed that addresses both knowledge and skill acquisition as a result of continuing education. The current study investigated learning outcomes from two training methods, direct and indirect, delivered in a practice setting. The direct method involved interaction with a trainer and provided an opportunity to ask questions, see demonstrations, and receive feedback on skill performance. The indirect method involved independent learning with no interaction with a trainer for knowledge or skill development. Self-reported locus of control orientation was measured to explore relationships with learning outcomes. Forty preprofessionals and professionals participated in the study. Knowledge and skill acquisition were compared between training groups using an independent-samples t test. There was a statistically significant improvement in knowledge acquisition from pretest to posttest for both groups. No significant differences were identified between groups for knowledge or skill acquisition. Pearson’s correlation was not significant between knowledge and skill or between knowledge or skill and locus of control orientation for either group. Additionally, no significant interaction was identified using a multivariate general linear model for knowledge and skill and locus of control by group. The results of the study provided insight into the value of obtaining knowledge and skill outcomes for continuing professional education in a practicebased environment. Information gleaned from learning outcomes can be used as a mechanism to strategically structure ongoing educational support, a vital component in bringing about performance improvement and integration of new skills into the practice setting. Additionally, there are implications for continuing professional education policy as it relates to education that leads to practice improvement through integration of new skills into the workplace.


Includes bibliographical references (pages [95]-102).


v, 143 pages




Northern Illinois University

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