Students' participation in the marketing education program :the relative effects of tangible versus symbolic factors
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The purpose of the present study was to find out which of the two types of attributes of the marketing education program (at the high school level), tangible or symbolic, have the greatest influence on student interest in enrolling in the program. The findings will help program planners to develop appealing and workable promotional campaigns. In addition, the results of this study will also assist in modifying existing aspects of the program that will facilitate in attracting and retaining appropriate students.
The methodology involved the usage of two models, the ideal social self-image congruence model and the Bass-Talarzyk attitude model. The first model was used to measure ideal social self-image (the symbolic attributes), where the second one measured the belief/importance variables (the tangible attributes).
The instrument used was a questionnaire which was mailed to equal numbers of marketing education students and non-marketing education students in Virginia. A preliminary study was also conducted in which two focus group interviews took place utilizing thirty high school students at two local high schools. The students were asked to respond to questions regarding the tangible and symbolic attributes of the marketing education program at their schools.
Multiple regression procedures were used to analyze the data. The findings showed that students are influenced more by the tangible attributes and to a lesser, but significant degree, by the symbolic attributes of the program in relation to their attitudes toward the marketing education program. The non-marketing students were influenced significantly by the symbolic attributes of the program, where as the marketing students were not.
It is recommended that an effective promotional campaign be designed which will emphasize the important tangible and symbolic attributes of the program that were found in this study. In addition, the "college-preparation" attribute of the program should be emphasized in the campaign. The promotional campaign should be aimed at the students, teachers, parents, and counselors. Also, the important program attributes found in the study should be used to redesign some aspects of the program, in order to achieve higher program quality.program quality.
- Doctoral Dissertations