Agricultural Leadership, Education & Communication Department



Harry L. Field

Date of this Version

Fall 8-1985


A DISSERTATION Presented to the Faculty of The Graduate College in the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements For the Degree of Doctor of Education Major: Interdepartmental Area of Administration, Curriculum and Instruction Under the Supervision of Professor James T. Horner


Mechanized Agriculture/Agricultural Mechanization programs have been in existence since the early 1900's, but no researcher has attempted to determine the human relations competencies that are important for the graduates of these programs to possess. This dissertation attempted to remedy this situation by determining the importance level graduates placed on a list of 80 human relations competencies. The level of importance for the competencies was determined by analyzing the results of a questionnaire sent to 120 graduates of the University of Nebraska's Mechanized Agriculture program. The questionnaire included two demographic questions, one on job category and one on graduation period, and 80 human relations competencies. The graduates were asked to rate the competencies on a scale of 1 (Not Important), 2 (Moderately Important), 3 (Important) or 4 (Very Important). The questionnaire was developed by reviewing literature for concepts that were within four themes of human relations: Understanding Yourself and Others, Motivation, Communication, and Conflict Resolution. These concepts were written as unique competencies, divided into four groups, based on the four themes, and evaluated and reduced to 80 through the use of a pretest. The analysis of data determined the statistical significance and statistical differences within the four competency groups, between the four competency groups, within the four competency group's by job category of the graduates, between the four competency groups by job category of the graduates, and between the four competency groups by graduation period of the graduates. The results indicated the graduates felt human relations competencies were essential for them to possess. The majority of the competencies were rated at or above the "important" level and statistical differences existed for all of the tests except the between group test done by job category.