Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Dr. Edgar A. Kelley

Second Advisor

Dr. David Cowden

Third Advisor

Dr. George DePillo

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Patrick Jenlink


This study examined the perceptions of employers who belong to the Midwest College Placement Association and actively recruit graduates from Midwestern colleges and universities. Their attitudes on hiring criteria and kinds of work experience which influence the decision to hire were surveyed using an equal-appearing interval scale. The data collected were disaggregated according to the academic majors of the graduates hired using a chi-square analysis and t tests. The validity of the instrument developed by a team of experts was tested with a pilot survey to determine mean and modal scores of each item to establish which items should be included in the final survey instrument. Reliability was determined using the Cronbach alpha coefficient.

The findings from this study indicate that cooperative education is a very strong influencer on hiring decisions in areas of engineering, business, and humanities and social sciences. It influences the decisions in some areas of science. Employers perceive any kind of related work experience to be highly important in making their decision for hiring . Other criteria are compared with cooperative education experiences in this study of attractiveness factors for hiring decisions.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access