Masters Theses

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Agricultural Extension

Major Professor

Robert S. Dotson

Committee Members

Cecil E. Carter Jr., Oliver F. Cook, Chris C. Blake


The purpose of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness of the 1975 Tennessee 4-H Communications Leadership Conference in terms of Delegates' and Conference Assistants' opinions according to sex and grade level. A total of 186 Delegates and 18 Conference Assistants attending the Conference completed the evaluation form. Delegates also were contacted at three- and six-month periods following the Conference to determine what had been done as a result of participation. A total of 122 Delegates responded to either the three-month and/or the six-month survey. Ninety-four responded to both, and eight responded only to the second. Major findings included the following: 1. The average ratings by the total for Delegates and Conference Assistants together for the time allocated for the Conference as a whole and for its various parts and items were in the "not enough time" category. 2. While the average rating by the Delegate and Conference Assistant total for each subject as a whole was "very adequate," average ratings for the various study groups ranged from "fairly adequate" on "Radio" to "very adequate" on "Group Communications." 3. While the average rating by the total of Delegates and Conference Assistants for the time allocated to each subject as a whole was "not enough" time, averages for the various study groups ranged from "about right" for "Music" to "not enough" time for all other groups. 4. Nearly three-fourths of all Delegates and Conference Assistants indicated their need for additional training to chair promotion committees and more than one-half also felt need for training if they were to most successfully lead project groups. 5. Items liked most by participants included "Meeting People and Making Friends," "Television Study," "Whole Conference," "Radio Study" and "Total Study Groups." 6. "Breakfast Cookouts," "Vespers" and "Lack of Time" were the three things disliked the most by the Conference participants. 7. "Study Groups," "Radio," "Housing," and "Television" were the four strengths most frequently mentioned by all the participants. 8. Of 29 weaknesses, "Breakfast Cookouts," "Vespers" and "Lack of Time" were most frequently mentioned. 9. Percentages of Delegates and Conference Assistants desiring additional training in preparation to chair county 4-H promotion committees ranged from approximately two-thirds each for ninth graders and twelfth graders to three-fourths of eleventh graders. Those desiring additional training to lead project groups ranged from only one-third twelfth graders to 58 percent of eleventh graders. 10. With regard to project and special interest groups, Delegates most frequently mentioned working with "Public Speaking," "Newspaper," "Photography," "Arts and Crafts," "Radio" and "Music" in that order at both three- and six-month periods following the Conference. 11. With regard to promotional work done by Delegates following the Conference, most frequently mentioned items in descending order included "Writing of News Articles," "Taking of Leadership in Promotions Committee," "Planning of Radio Programs and Exhibits," and "Promotion by Word of Mouth." This was true in both time periods. 12. Other things reportedly done following the Conference included "Leading Group Singing," "Developing a Program," "Helping Train Officers," "Working on Newsletters or Newspapers," "Writing and Giving Speeches," and "Assuming a Leadership Role." This was true in both time periods. In terms of specific evaluation, it was found that: 1. The informal nature and freedom of all sessions allowed participants to express themselves. 2. There was a feeling of friendliness and trust which pervaded the Conference atmosphere. 3. Based on findings of this study of the Conference, it is implied that the Conference was successful, that people did grow and that such Conferences are useful. Recommendations for application of findings and further study were listed.

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