This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Assessing the Needs of Middle School Agricultural Education Teachers in Georgia


Like their students, middle school agriculture teachers are a unique group with special needs and concerns. And like their students, the needs of middle school teachers and their programs are often misunderstood and overlooked in the professional world when compared to secondary teachers and programs. As middle school programs are still fairly new to the world of agriculture education and are expected to continue to grow across the country, little focus has been placed on the needs of these programs and their teachers (Frick, 1993). In order to ensure success of teachers and to guarantee the longevity of quality middle school agriculture programs, it is necessary to identify areas in which teachers perceive to need assistance in order to improve themselves, their students and their program. This study focused on Georgia middle school agriculture teachers’ perceived levels of need in various competency areas. A needs assessment was used to gather data from current Georgia middle school agriculture teachers. The findings of this study indicate that Georgia middle school agriculture teachers’ greatest overall needs for in-service training were in community and FFA competency areas. More specifically, teachers indicated to need help writing grants, utilizing the Ag Career Network, completing Secretary, Reporter and Treasurer books, motivating students to learn and recruiting business partners. Determining the needs of this group of teachers will help provide adequate training to ensure that middle school teachers have ample opportunities to be successful both inside and outside of the classroom. Successful teachers will lead successful programs which will directly impact high school agriculture education programs that feed off of these middle school programs.