- State-level involvement in community college education is growing, yet community college leaders do not possess a research-based understanding of the process by which state policy is made. This study explored the political behavior of key participants in the process surrounding the enactment of legislation in six states during their 1983 legislative sessions. These states were selected on the basis of their political culture and level of urban/industrialization to determine the shaping effects of these characteristics on behavior in the policymaking process. Participants in each state completed a questionnaire on policy directions to determine the political culture of the policy subsystem for community college education. To assess political behavior in the process, participants were asked in telephone interviews to comment on the participation, involvement, and leadership exerted by themselves and others as well as coalition activity and the similarity of the process across issues., Of the 53 participants identified, 83.0 percent participated in the study. Relationships were tested according to the degree of association reached in the relationship. A moderate level of association (correlation ratio or Goodman and Kruskal's Tau at a value of 0.2 or higher) was defined as a threshold value for presentation of results. These results, along with observations made during the course of the study, provide some support for the hypotheses and suggest areas for further investigation. Among these are that (1) the state characteristics explored shape behavior in the policymaking process for community college education, and (2) there is a relationship between and among state political culture, urban/industrialization, and state administrative structure on the one hand, and measures of consensus in the policy subsystem on the other., and These findings suggest that community college leadership seeking to shape the policymaking process should become more aware of the key factors which shape the behavior of participants in that process. Furthermore, community college leaders would be well advised to determine the policy preferences of key actors and to nurture relationships with state-level executive branch actors who figure large in the process.
- Dissertation Note:
- Ph.D. The Pennsylvania State University 1987.
- Source: Dissertation Abstracts International, Volume: 49-04, Section: A, page: 7070. and Adviser: S. V. Martorana.
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