ERIC Number: ED205105
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-May
Reference Count: 0
A Cluster Analytic Needs Assessment Model for Student Personnel Program Planning in Higher Education. AIR Forum 1981 Paper.
Lewis, Margaret; And Others
A systematic needs assessment model that may be useful to program planners in designing student personnel services is examined, and its implementation at East Central University in Ada, Oklahoma, during the 1979-80 academic year is described. The focus of the model is on identifying groups of students with similar service delivery needs through the use of a cluster analytic technique. In addition, service needs profiles are developed in relation to ratings of knowledge of service availability, projected use, and perceived need. The cluster analytic needs assessment model consists of four steps: identification of institutional goals; assessment of the current level of programming; assessment of the desired level of programming; and analysis of assessment data with accompanying suggestions for program changes or refinements. At East Central University, a questionnaire concerning student personnel services was administered to a random sample of students, and a three-stage strategy was used to analyze the resulting data. Fifty service items were factor analyzed to determine if students indicated a need for particular groups of services or would use those services, or had knowledge of those services. Factor scores generated from the service group factors were then analyzed using a hierarchical cluster analysis to group student respondents on the basis of their service profile. Cross-tabulations were employed to relate student background characteristics to service cluster membership to ascertain what patterns of background characteristics were connected to specific service clusters. This method facilitated assessment of each program or service within the context of the total student personnel program with respect to specific configurations of the total student body. A bibliography and lists of factor patterns are appended. (SW)
Descriptors: Cluster Analysis, College Role, College Students, Factor Analysis, Higher Education, Information Needs, Institutional Research, Models, Needs Assessment, Prediction, Program Development, Student Characteristics, Student College Relationship, Student Needs, Student Personnel Services, Use Studies
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: AIR Forum; East Central Oklahoma State University
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Forum of the Association for Institutional Research (21st, Minneapolis, MN, May 17-20, 1981).