Foster, D. D., Rice, L. L. S., Foster, M. J., & Barrick, R. K. (2014). Preparing agricultural educators for the world: Describing global competency in agricultural teacher candidates. Journal of Agricultural Education, 55(1), 51-64. doi: 10.5032/jae.2014.01051
Colleges of agriculture in the US have been challenged to produce candidates prepared with the knowledge, skills, and disposition to engage in a global agricultural industry. Studies show that one of the most influential factors in secondary student perceptions and outlook is their secondary teachers. The adult learning theory of transformative learning by Mezirow indicates a process of making a new or revised interpretation of the meaning of an experience, which guides subsequent understanding, appreciation, and action that is anchored in life experience. To have the most impact, experiences should be grounded in a context that students can relate. Nineteen teacher candidates participated in a course with a short term study abroad component that was grounded in global school-based agricultural education. Students were administered a researcher-developed instrument measuring knowledge, skills and dispositions of global competency three times: round I -prior to the course, round II -after the course prior to the travel experience, and round III after the travel experience. Findings indicated substantial, sustained change in the candidate knowledge, candidate perceptions of knowledge, candidate perceptions of skills, and candidate perceptions of dispositions related to global competency. Further research is recommended to measure impact on practice in the secondary agriscience classroom.