EVT 7066 Foundations & Philosophy of Vocational, Technical & Adult Education
Course Syllabus
(Revised August 2006)



Course: EVT 7066 Foundations & Philosophy of Vocational, Technical & Adult Education               Credit Hours:  3 Semester Hours

(Note: the title of this course is being changed to Social and Economic Foundations of Career & Workforce Education)




Dr. Bill Blank, Professor-Department of Adult, Career and Higher Education Dept.: http://www.coedu.usf.edu/main/departments/ache/ache.html

College of Education
University of South Florida
Bldg. EDU162
4202 Fowler Ave. Tampa, FL 33620

Office: EDU 151-G
Phone: 813-974-0314
Fax: 813-974-3366
Email: blank@coedu.usf.edu
Office Hours: usually Tuesdays & Thursday, 10AM-4PM
Department Office and faculty mailboxes:  EDU 151; 974-3420


Course Prerequisites:  N/A


Course Description:  This course examines our nation’s system of Career and Workforce Education (CWE) including education, training, career counseling, job placement, policy making, and other elements with an in-depth focus on the 9-14 career and technical education component.  The historical development, philosophical perspectives, and social and economic foundations of education and training for work are considered.   


Course Goals:


Major goals of the course are to assist participants in


1.     Assessing the potential impact on workforce education of newly released government, commission and related reports

2.     Examining components of a comprehensive national system of career and workforce education

3.     Understanding the historical impact of societal, legislative, economic trends on the evolution of education for work

4.     Understanding economic foundations of career and workforce education and development

5.     Examining important principles of career and workforce education

6.     Sociological foundations of education for work

7.     Considering the role that work related education and training should play in the nation’s educational system


Content Outline:


1.       Newly released national reports with impact on CWE

2.       Need for a national system of workforce education and development

3.       Workforce education and development system components

4.       Early forms of preparation for work

5.       The need for formal approaches to work related education and training

6.       The emergence modern vocational education

7.       Transition of vocational education into contemporary career and technical education

8.       Current state of and future changes in the nature of work and the workplace

9.       Demographic and related trends impacting the nature of the workforce

10.   Productivity, globalization, trade agreements and relate factors impacting the economy

11.   Education and training requirements of employment sectors and jobs

12.   The economic status of workers and citizens in the U.S.

13.   Historical and current debate about practical vs. liberal educational goals

14.   Career and technical education’s role in school reform

15.   Criticisms of work related education programs

16.   Outcomes and benefits of CTE program participation



Student Outcomes:


Students should be able to achieve the outcomes listed below.  These outcomes are assessed based on products developed and responses to questions and scenarios posed.


  1. Analyze the potential impact on career related education programs of newly released government and related reports
  2. Articulate the need for and describe components of a national system of workforce education and development
  3. Describe major forces that have impacted the evolution of education for work
  4. Articulate economic foundations of education and training for work
  5. Articulate important sociological foundations of career and workforce education
  6. Describe key principles of career and workforce education
  7. Acknowledge current criticisms of career related education programs
  8. Articulate benefits and outcomes of work related programs


Grading System and Criteria:


As graduate students seeking the highest academic degree that our system of higher education offers, it is assumed that everyone in the course is fully committed to becoming a recognized and “fully credentialed” expert in the field of career and workforce education and will, therefore, expend the energy, effort and time to master the intended outcomes of the course to a very high level.  It is assumed that everyone will do all of the background reading required, conduct the thorough research necessary and generate high quality products called for in each of the course units.  Barring unusual circumstances, everyone in the course should earn a grade of A.


Required Textbooks:


  1. Workforce Education: The Basics by Kenneth Gray and Edwin Herr, 1998, Allyn & Bacon
  2. The Sociology of Education and Work by David Bills, 2004, Blackwell Publishing
  3. A Nation At Work by Herbert Schaffner and Carl Van Horn (Eds), 2003, Rutgers University Press


These books are available through the USF bookstore.  Order them online as soon as possible by going to http://sftampa.bkstore.com/. Click on the small grey “textbooks” tab then click on the “Buying your textbooks just got easier!”.  Select the current “Term” and then scroll down and select  “EVT” for the “Department” and then select “7066” for “Course #”, then select the “Section” (only one section being offered), then hit “Go”.  Note: The second and third books listed above will be used in subsequent courses in the doctoral program.

Online Learning:

Taking a course via the Internet offers many advantages to the student including being able to work on course assignments and completing the required readings, viewings and projects largely when you choose to do so, working at your own pace in the comfort of your home or office, and avoiding the hassle of driving to campus and searching for a parking space, etc.

There are also several disadvantages. These include the lack of interaction with the instructor and with fellow participants. Interaction with the instructor has been built in by requiring periodic responses to questions posed and reactions by the instructor to your work posted on the course website throughout the semester.  Also, the instructor is available for face-to-face meetings throughout the semester. Interaction with fellow course participants is built in through participants posting questions, responses and observations on the course web site and reacting to the postings of others.

A second disadvantage of a Web-based course is the lack of structure inherent in a course that meets live on a regular schedule. Please be aware that it is very easy to fall behind in making normal progress toward completing the course by the end of the semester. Please make every effort to complete each unit assignment or product by the due date indicated in the Course Schedule. These due dates have been included to aid you in pacing yourself, maintaining progress and avoiding the "last minute rush" that might occur otherwise.

Systems Requirements and Technical Problems:

On the Blackboard log on screen, you will see the Browser Wizard which you can use to determine if your browser and hardware are compatible with Blackboard.  Contact the instructor with questions about the course content or assignments.  If you have technical questions or problems with Blackboard or your hardware during the semester or are unsure if your system is sufficiently up-to-date to handle Blackboard, contact the USF academic computing help desk at mailto:help-ac@usf.edu or call 974-1222 in Tampa or 1-866-974-1222 statewide.  

Blackboard Announcements:


When you log on to Blackboard and open EVT 7066, you will notice that Announcements are visible.  I will periodically post announcements with reminders about important activities or due dates, information about new resources or other important information.  Be sure and check for announcements at least weekly.  Note that by clicking on the tabs you can read announcements posted during the past week, month, etc. in case you missed them.

A Word About Blackboard E-Mail:

Please note that Email sent to you by the instructor and fellow participants through the course Blackboard website will go to your USF email account that was automatically created for you when you registered.  You can have this email automatically forwarded to your personal email account such as AOL, hotmail, etc. by following these instructions:

  1. Go to http://una.acomp.usf.edu
  2. Log in with your NetID and password.  If you don’t have one yet, click on “Are you a new user? Sign up!”
  3. Select the helios or mail account from green menu on the left hand side
  4. Click on Edit helios or mail Account Options (gray button at the top of your screen)
  5. Scroll down until you see the box labeled: Change Your Forwarding Address OPTIONAL
  6. Select the radio button next to: Forward e-mail to the address below
  7. Type alternative e-mail into the text entry box
  8. Click on OK


Otherwise, remember to periodically check your USF email account frequently throughout the semester.  I will normally respond to emails within 48 hours unless I am out of town for a conference, etc.  To send email within Blackboard, click Communications, then Send E-mail.  You can send email to All Users or Select users.


Course Units:


The course is built around Units with each having one or more assignment or product to develop. Within the course Web site are general Instructions for completing each unit. Unless otherwise indicated, assignments or products are to be submitted to the Discussion Board or to the Assignments areas within Blackboard.  When you go into the Discussion Board area, you will see one or more Forum for each of the units for the course.  Be sure and post each assignment to the appropriate Forum.  For shorter assignments, you might be keying your responses to questions, etc. right in the Message box for that forum.  If the assignment is more lengthy, you’ll first create it in your word processor, save it as an .rtf or .doc file and attach it to the forum as a separate document.  Please be sure and include your name and unit number on each assignment if you create it on your word processor.  Anything you type or post to the Discussion Board forums can be seen by everyone in the class.


For most units there will be an activity that asks you to “pull it all together” and post the results to the Assignments area of Blackboard (e.g., your responses to questions posed).  Click on the Assignments icon on the main course page and then click the >> View/Complete Assignment:… link at the bottom of the particular assignment you are responding to.  If the assignment is fairly brief (approximately 200 characters) you can enter it directly in the Comments box and hit “Submit”.    If your assignment is fairly lengthy you should attach it as a separate .rtf or .doc file because once you exceed the limit of characters you can enter into the comments box, everything you have entered may be lost.   Anything you type or post in the Assignments area can only be seen by the instructor.


Keep in mind that Blackboard will only open.doc or .rtf files.


Online Discussion:


Since we will have little face-to-face contact and since one of the most valuable learning resources we have is one another, I am asking everyone to engage in a great deal of ongoing discussion in the Discussion Board area throughout the semester.  When participants post a product, assignment, question, comment, etc. to this area please take the time to respond to as many of these postings as you can.  Offer your frank, constructive and substantive input, suggestions, follow-up  information, etc.  You will also want to (as appropriate) respond to reactions to your initial postings, etc., thus, creating a discussion “thread”.  To do this, click the posting or reaction you wish to reply to, click “Reply”, enter your reaction, comments, etc. in the message box and then hit “Submit”.  


Course Schedule:

An important document you will be using throughout the semester is the Course Schedule (click “Course Documents” on the main course website).  It indicates due dates for each of the unit assignments.   Note: there will be a preliminary version of the Course Schedule posted when the course begins with due dates for the first several units.   A final version will be posted after the semester begins; make sure you have the latest version.  I understand that everyone in the program has many responsibilities beyond this course including family, job, etc.  If you have to miss a due date here and there by a few days due to being out of town or a family emergency there is no need to contact the instructor; post the assignment as soon as you can.

Creating Your Homepage:


Please create your student homepage the first few days of the semester.  When you log in to Blackboard, click on the Organizations tab at the very top of the screen and click on “2006 PhD in Career & Workforce Education Cohort”.  Click on “Tools”, and then click on “Homepage”.  In the Introduction area, enter your name and a brief salutation or greeting which is what others will see before they actually open your homepage.  In the Personal Information area enter the actual biographical information about you, contact information, etc.  Make sure you include your contact information (to the extent you feel comfortable).  You might want to include your work site, mailing address, telephone, direct email address, etc.  Include a description of your current teaching or work setting, something about your background, your teaching and occupational experience, and anything you want to share about your family, hobbies, unusual experiences, etc.  Feel free to omit any information you feel is private or otherwise sensitive.  Also include in your home page any links you might have to your school or program or other favorite web sites.  Note that you can enter the Organizations area and view homepages and other areas during the entire time you are enrolled in the doctoral program even though you might not be taking courses during a particular semester.


Uploading Your Picture:


We will attempt to take a digital photograph of everyone during the orientation so that everyone’s picture on their homepage is up-to-date, fully visible and somewhat consistent. I will email these to you soon after the orientation.  To upload this photo to your homepage when you receive it, click “Upload a Picture” in the area where you created your homepage.  If we were not able to take a photo of you at the orientation please upload one of your own (150 x 150 dpi recent color portrait, passport, etc. type of photograph).  If you do not have a scanner, check with your media specialist to have your photo scanned onto a floppy disk; you can also have this done at most photo processing sites such as Walgreens, etc.  Make sure the digital image is no more that approximately 150 by 150 dpi so that it will fit on the homepage. 


Viewing Homepages:


To view the homepages of fellow participants, click “Organizations” on the main Blackboard log in screen, and then click the 2006 PhD in Career & Workforce Education Cohort.  Then click “Communications” and then click “Roster” and then “list all” twice and then click the name of the person’s homepage you wish to view.


Policy On Incompletes (I):


An Incomplete (grade of "I") will be submitted at the end of the semester only for unusual circumstances. It is the instructor's experience that when a participant receives an incomplete in a course, a great deal of paperwork, telephone and/or Email exchanges and face-to-face meetings are necessary to resolve the I. And almost without exception, usually due to a significant time lapse that occurs, the course assignments are rarely completed in the same quality fashion as those, which are completed on time. University policy calls for incompletes to be awarded only when the coursework has been substantively completed (75%) and there are extenuating circumstances preventing the student from completing the course requirements by the end of the semester.


If an I is given, any incomplete work must be completed within one semester after the I is received due to the fact that the course web site is only archived for one semester.  After that time, all records, assignments, postings, etc. for that semester are deleted by the USF computer center.  Those receiving an I and not completing all outstanding assignments and resolving the I during the subsequent semester will have to retake the course to remove the I.


Other Important Information (Standard Information In All USF Course Syllabi):  


ADA Statement:  Students with disabilities are responsible for registering with the Office of Student Disabilities Services in order to receive special accommodations and services.  Please notify the instructor during the first week of classes if a reasonable accommodation for a disability is needed for this course.  A letter from the USF Disability Services Office must accompany this request.


USF Policy on Religious Observances:  Students who anticipate the necessity of being absent from class due to the observation of a major religious observance must provide notice of the date(s) to the instructor, in writing, by the second class meeting.


Web Portal Information:  Why are the NetID and Helios account important to students?  A helios account, which is the official USF e-mail account, is given to every USF student when enrolled.  Every official USF correspondence to students will be sent to the helios account.  More information about this and the USF Web Portal can be found at:  http://www.acomp.usf/portal.html .


Academic Dishonesty:  Plagiarism is defined as “literary theft” and consists of the unattributed quotation of the exact words of a published text, or the unattributed borrowing of original ideas by paraphrase from a published text.  On written papers for which the student employs information gathered from books, articles, or oral sources, each direct quotation, as well as ideas and facts that are not generally know to the public at large must be attributed to its author by means of the appropriate citation procedure.  Citations may be made in footnotes or within the body of the text.  Plagiarism also consists of passing off as one’s own, segments or the total of another person’s work.  Punishment for Academic Dishonesty will depend on the seriousness of the offense and may include receipt of an “F” with a numerical value of zero on the item submitted, and the “F” shall be used to determine the final course grade.  It is the option of the instructor to assign the student a grade of F or FF (the latter indicating dishonesty) in the course. 


Detection of Plagiarism:  The University of South Florida has an account with an automated plagiarism detection service, which allows instructors to submit student assignments to be checked for plagiarism.  I reserve the right to 1) request that assignments be submitted to me as electronic files and 2) electronically submit assignments to Turnitin.com.  Assignments are compared automatically with a huge database of journal articles, web articles, and previously submitted papers.  The instructor receives a report showing exactly how a student’s paper was plagiarized.  For more information, go to http://www.turnitin.com/  and http://www.ugs.usf.edu/catalogs/0304/adadap.htm#plagiarism .