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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


Educational Administration and Leadership

First Advisor

Delores McNair

First Committee Member

Norena Badway

Second Committee Member

James Riggs

Third Committee Member

Cidhinnia Torres Campos


The purpose of this study was to analyze the characteristics of innovative designs within community college short-term certificate programs. Innovations in workforce training occur as stakeholders identify highly successful vocational programs and replicate those programs. Educational leaders in several states have developed short-term certificate programs to provide training that rewards students for completing modules of competencies en route to further certificates or degrees. Collective case studies were performed on the content of policy documents and of interviews with administrators at three California community colleges pertaining to the design of short-term vocational courses. The cross-case analysis showed agreement of the need for high levels of collaboration, development of fast-track programs to meet employability needs, and design of pathways to allow credits toward other certificates or degrees. Charts are displayed of data trends for short-term certificates earned by unit category over the years 1998-2007. Examples of short-term curricular schema are included in the appendices.





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