Date of Conferral
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
Differences in race, ethnicity, gender, and age have shaped the most diverse workforce in recent years and have also influenced the workplace learning environment. Variability in age created several generations that presented an instructional challenge in the workplace for trainers who have not recognized and understood generational differences. The purpose of this study was to investigate how employees in 4 generations differed with respect to attitudes toward instructional approaches using technology in the workplace classroom. A theoretical framework incorporating Knowles' learning theory of andragogy guided this study, which used survey research methods within a quantitative design. The sample of 731 city employees from various departments completed the Media and Technology Usage and Attitudes Scales administered through an online survey tool. One-way ANOVA indicated that only on the Positive Attitudes Toward Technology scale, scores of the oldest generation, the Traditionalists, were significantly less positive than those of the 3 younger generations (Baby Boomers, Generation X, and Millennials) who did not differ significantly from each other. Research findings led to the conclusion that some differences existed in generational attitudes toward instructional approaches. Based on this conclusion, a 3-day leadership workshop was created, which includes recommendations for a customized approach to instructing the generations. Implications for social change include the potential for organizations to modify instruction to correspond with attitudinal differences of the generations and allow organizations in all industries to take proactive steps for workforce changes in learning.