Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Kortegast, Carrie A.

Degree Name

Ed.D. (Doctor of Education)

Legacy Department

Department of Counseling and Higher Education (CAHE)


Health Information Technology (HIT) is an in-demand occupation across Illinois and as such community colleges offer related preparation programs in the form of one-two semester Career and Technical Education (CTE) Certificates and Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) degrees. Community college applied programs aim to meet the needs of local employers and the interest of students to obtain employment within their communities. Research suggests that employability as perceived by employers goes beyond the technical skill requirements of the job. This dissertation project aimed to better understand employer’s hiring perspectives on community college health information technology (HIT) program graduates and ultimately whether applicants having a degree influenced those hiring practices. Key findings included 1) employers’ perception that soft skills are as important as technical skills to be a successful employee; 2) employers’ perception that new community college-educated HIT hires, particularly those with a degree, were well prepared to be successful employees; 3) employers’ perception that having a community college education, particularly an HIT degree, was a benefit in hiring and to the organization overall; and 4) hiring practices for HIT positions were consistent across the State and size of employer.


93 pages




Northern Illinois University

Rights Statement

In Copyright

Rights Statement 2

NIU theses are protected by copyright. They may be viewed from Huskie Commons for any purpose, but reproduction or distribution in any format is prohibited without the written permission of the authors.

Media Type