The effects of trainee ability and motivation on the transfer process

Nunes, Charne (Stellenbosch : University of Stellenbosch, 2003-04)

Thesis

ENGLISH ABSTRACT: Training represents an expensive investment organisations make in their human resources. For this reason, it is imperative that the knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviours gained in training be transferred into visible on-the-job performance and results. Unfortunately, despite the increasing amounts of time, effort and money being spent on organisational training, the so-called “transfer problem” remains a threat. Continued low transfer puts a major portion of the training investment at risk, thus justifying practical efforts to leverage greater transfer of training. This study is one such effort. The primary goal of this study was to develop and test an empirical model of the transfer process so as to establish the effects of trainee ability and motivation on this process. More specifically, it aimed to establish the relationships between the constructs trainee ability to learn, motivation to learn, intention to learn, learning and retention, motivation to transfer, intention to transfer and consequently, transfer. A comprehensive study of the transfer of training literature was conducted so as to gain a better understanding of the issues relevant to the purpose of the study. The sample used for this study consisted of 116 trainees attending an assessor training course provided by the Wholesale and Retail Sector Education and Training Authorities (W&RSETA) in South Africa. Five questionnaires were administered during the course of the study, of which two were developed especially for the purposes of the study. The Motivation to Learn Questionnaire consisted of three sections. Section A was designed to give an indication of the demographic data of the trainees. Section B measured Motivation to Learn and Section C measured Intention to Learn by means of a Likert-type scale. The Motivation to Transfer Questionnaire also consisted of three sections, with Section A providing demographic data, Section B measuring Motivation to Transfer, and Section C measuring Intention to Transfer via a Liker-type scale. A Mental Alertness Scale, giving an indication of ability to learn (i.e. general cognitive ability), as well as a pre- and post Knowledge Test, measuring learning and retention, also had to be administered during the study. These measures were distributed to the various training facilitators for administration according to specified instructions at their respective training sessions. The data was subsequently analysed using SPSS. Unfortunately, not all hypotheses could be corroborated in this study, yet useful insights were nonetheless gained. It was discovered that ability to learn significantly affects the amount of learning and retention that occurs during training. Ability to learn was also positively correlated with motivation to learn the training material. Motivation to learn produced significant relationships with three variables, namely intention to learn, intention to transfer, as well as motivation to transfer learning into on-the-job performance. Intention to learn was also found to positively correlate with intention to transfer. Finally, motivation to transfer indicated a significant correlation with intention to transfer. Consequently, conclusions were derived from the results obtained and recommendations for future research made.

AFRIKAANSE OPSOMMING: Opleiding is ‘n duur belegging wat organisasies in hul menslike hulpbronne maak en daarom is dit uiters belangrik dat die kennis, vaardighede, houdings en gedrag wat tydens opleiding aangeleer word, oorgedra word tot sigbare werksprestasie en resultate. Ongelukkig bly die oordrag van aangeleerde kennis en vaardighede ‘n probleem, ten spyte van die toenemende besteding van tyd, inspanning en fondse aan organisatoriese opleiding. ‘n Groot deel van die belegging in organisatoriese opleiding word op die spel geplaas deur voortdurende lae vlakke van oordrag. Om die rede, regverdig dit praktiese pogings om hoër oordragsvlakke te bewerkstellig. Hierdie studie poog om ‘n bydrae te maak in hierdie verband. Die primêre doel van die studie is om ‘n empiriese model van die oordragsproses te ontwikkel en te toets, en sodoende die effek van leerders se vermoëns en motivering op hierdie proses vas te stel. Meer spesifiek, poog dit om die verband tussen die konstrukte van leervermoë, motivering om te leer, intensie om te leer, leer en retensie, motivering om oor te dra, intensie om oor te dra, en oordrag, vas te stel. ‘n Omvattende literatuurstudie van die oordrag van leer is uitgevoer om sodoende ‘n beter begrip te kry van die konstrukte ter sake. ‘n Steekproef van 116 leerders is in die studie gebruik. Die leerders het ‘n assessoropleidingsprogram bygewoon wat deur die W&R SETA verskaf is. Vyf vraelyste is gedurende die studie toegepas, waarvan twee vir die doeleindes van die studie ontwikkel is. Die motivering-om-te-leer vraelys bestaan uit drie afdelings. Afdeling A verteenwoordig demografiese items, en Afdeling B en Afdeling C meet onderskeidelik motivering om te leer en intensie om te leer met behulp van ‘n 7-punt Likert-tipe skaal. Die oordragmotiveringsvraelys bestaan ook uit drie afdelings, waar Afdeling A weer op demografiese informasie fokus. Afdeling B en C meet onderskeidelik oordragmotivering en oordragintensie met behulp van ‘n 7-punt Likerttipe skaal. ‘n Verstandelikehelderheidsskaal (wat leervermoë gemeet het), sowel as ‘n voor- en na-kennistoets (wat leer en retensie meet) is ook toegepas gedurende die studie. Hierdie vraelyste is aan die verskillende opleiers versprei sodat hulle dit volgens die instruksies in hulle onderskeidelike opleidingssessies kon toepas. Die data is geanaliseer deur die gebruik van die rekenaarpakket SPSS. Al die hipoteses kon nie bevestig word nie, maar nuttige insigte is nogtans ingewin. Resultate toon dat leervermoë ‘n beduidende effek het op die hoeveelheid leer en retensie wat gedurende opleiding plaasvind. Leervermoë het ook ‘n positiewe verband met leermotivering getoon. Leermotivering het beduidende korrelasies met drie veranderlikes getoon, naamlik leerintensie, oordragintensie en oordragmotivering. Leerintensie het ook ‘n positiewe korrelasie met oordragintensie getoon. Laastens is ‘n beduidende korrelasie tussen oordragmotivering en oordragintensie bevind. Gevolgtrekkings en aanbevelings vir toekomstige navorsing is gemaak.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10019.1/16408
This item appears in the following collections: