The problems of the re-entrant in the transfer of learning to public service organizations in Nigeria

Mmobuosi, Ifechukude B (1983) The problems of the re-entrant in the transfer of learning to public service organizations in Nigeria. PhD thesis, University of Glasgow.

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Abstract

The study sets off to explore why public service managers who return from management and related courses fail to transfer their learning to their work situation. The problem is assessed as important because of the considerable financial and human resources invested by governments in the training and development of staff who are expected to play a part in socio-economic development. The literature is surveyed for an appreciation of the state of knowledge about the problem as well as to obtain a hypothetical basis for the study. The survey helps the arrival at the decision that the problem be looked into phenomeno-logically from three dimensions - organizational climate or situation, learning situation, and personal characteristics of re-entrants. On the organizational dimension, the literature suggests that the problem of learning transfer may be associated with the attitudes of organizational members to learning-imported ideas and the re-entrant himself. Re-entrants' perceptions of the natures of organizational power and authority politics, leadership and bureaucratic complexity and structuralization may also affect learning transfer, positively or negatively. So also their perceptions of the internal management of the training function. As regards the learning situation, the information synthesized from the literature is that for learning transfer to be likely, the re-entrant must Have perceived that essentially the principles of relevance and motivation to learn must have been satisfied. Concerning the dimension of personal ciiaracteristics of re-entrants, the indication is that a training-recipient's perception of his own self- confidence, human relations effectiveness, motivation, and power and authority, beside belief in the idea of progress, could affect his disposition to engage in transfer behaviour. The learning transfer experiences of six re-entrants are examined with (phenomenology-based) protocol analysis method. It is then found that though learning activities and personal characteristics be learning transfer-conducive, organizational forces, in the re-entrant's perception, are too impeding for transfer to occur or succeed. These forces are pervasive coercive-alienative practices and leadership and co-worker unsupportiveness; overload; re-entrants' tendency to generalize that the failure of change effort elsewheire would be the fate of their own learning transfer behaviour; and the perception of general unawareness, among leaders and co-workers, of the need to utilize the ideas of trained manpower Existing models of change and learning transfer are evaluated in the light of these findings. Some of them are shown to be too 'laissez faire' or too addressed to experts and consultants to be entirely useful to a re-entrant, While leadership-based models are demonstrated as better suited to re-entrants, they are shown as having possible loopholes since democratically oriented subordinates may feel being imposed on by leaders or dominant coalitions. Another model is therefore suggested, involving the pre and post-course interactions of all who are expected to be affected by learning-imported ideas. The model is christened 'A mutual expectations (model of) learning transfer' MELT.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Qualification Level: Doctoral
Additional Information: Adviser: A A Hurzynaki
Keywords: Management, Organization theory
Date of Award: 1983
Depositing User: Enlighten Team
Unique ID: glathesis:1983-73771
Copyright: Copyright of this thesis is held by the author.
Date Deposited: 14 Jun 2019 08:56
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2019 08:56
URI: http://theses.gla.ac.uk/id/eprint/73771

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