This study aims to investigate the role of social capital in Iranian agricultural students' acquisition of generic skills. For this purpose, the effect of various social…
This study aims to investigate the role of social capital in Iranian agricultural students' acquisition of generic skills. For this purpose, the effect of various social capital dimensions on students' generic skills development was examined.
A survey was conducted among 190 third- and fourth-year undergraduate students in one of the colleges of agriculture and natural resources in Iran. The partial least square method was used to examine the relationships among various social capital dimensions (i.e. social values, social trust, social networks, social cohesion, social participation, social communications and information sharing) with students' generic skills.
The findings showed that social networks and social participation are effective factors in the generic skills development of students. A model designed for the development of students' generic skills based on their social capital level predicted up to 33% of generic skills' variances. Furthermore, the multi-group analysis showed that males and females vary on how various social capital dimensions affect their generic skills. In this respect, the social participation dimension had a significantly greater impact on female students' generic skills, whereas the generic skills of male students were influenced more by the social cohesion dimension.
Developing generic skills through social capital can be considered as an effective strategy in countries that do not have formal programs for developing students' generic skills. Additionally, higher education policymakers should present a more supportive approach for developing generic skills of female students through social participation in the campuses.
So far, no study has examined the relationships among various social capital dimensions and students' generic skills in Iran. The picture is even more unclear when it comes to the differences between male and female students. The results of this study confirmed the importance of social networks and social participation in the universities to support students and to improve their generic skills and, consequently, their employability competencies. Furthermore, it could be inferred that male and female students have similarities and also differences in terms of the effect of social capital on developing generic skills that can provide a path for future studies.
– The purpose of this paper is to investigate the affecting factors on faculty members’ psychological empowerment of agricultural colleges in Iran.
The purpose of this paper is to investigate the affecting factors on faculty members’ psychological empowerment of agricultural colleges in Iran.
A sample of 404 faculty members from 12 agricultural colleges participated in this survey study. Based on the literature a conceptual model of factors affecting psychological empowerment of agricultural faculty members was proposed. Regression analysis was used to determine the effect of proposed affecting factors.
Results showed that professional skills, organizational culture and management-organizational factors, respectively, had the most positive significant effect on psychological empowerment of agricultural faculty members.
The measuring of professional skills, one of the effective factors on faculty members’ psychological empowerment, by asking their colleagues or students may lead to more accurate data while in this study was evaluated through self-assessment.
The relative weakness/strength of agricultural colleges in different dimensions of faculty members’ psychological empowerment and also factors affecting them can be used as a basis for planning for improving agricultural faculty members’ psychological empowerment.
The proposed conceptual model provided a framework for investigating the factors affecting psychological empowerment of agricultural faculty members and was empirically tested.