Keith James

Date of Award

Summer 9-1-2015

Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.) in Applied Psychology



Physical Description

1 online resource (xii, 189 pages)


Indians of North America -- Education, Employees -- Training of -- Audio-visual aids -- Evaluation, Culturally relevant pedagogy, Indians of North America -- Attitudes, Multicultural education




Employee Training and Development (T&D) is a crucial component to an organization’s success and its ability to remain competitive. Although researchers in the field have discovered ways to enhance the effectiveness of training programs through the design, delivery, and evaluation process, research has not provided empirically-based recommendations for how to best train individuals whose cultural backgrounds may influence receptiveness of training curriculum. This is particularly relevant for employees whose cultural groups have been historically discriminated against, where cultural norms implicit in the training design may be met with resistance on behalf of the trainees. In the field of multicultural education, an instructional approach has been suggested to overcome cultural differences between instructor, curriculum writers, and students known as culturally responsive education. I evaluated a pre-training video prime based on this approach in the context of multi-site data-use training program for Native American educational professionals. Data-use training was delivered after exposure to one of two videos that framed the objectives of data use either in a culturally responsive way or in a generic mainstream fashion. Participants filled out surveys after the video but before the training, and then again after the training. Prime type was randomly assigned by training location. I hypothesized that participants who received a culturally responsive training prime would learn more during the data-usage training than participants who did not, and that this effect would be mediated by heightened affective motivators immediately following the culturally responsive prime. None of the hypothesized pathways were supported. There was no direct effect of my prime manipulation on knowledge (Hypothesis 1) or skill acquisition (H2), or on pre-training motivation to learn (H3), research-related self-efficacy (H4), goal-commitment (H5), or identification with research (H6). Furthermore, there were no indirect effects of my manipulation on knowledge (H7) or skill (H8) acquisition through pre-training motivation to learn, self-efficacy, goal-commitment, or identification with research. The motivation to learn subscale for valence had a significant positive direct effect on knowledge and skill acquisition and self-efficacy significantly positively predicted skill acquisition. Goal-commitment and motivation to learn subscales for instrumentality and expectancy had a significant negative relationship with skill acquisition. Lack of support for my hypothesized pathways is explained partially by the failure of my independent variable to influence perceptions of cultural responsiveness. A manipulation check revealed that participants did not appraise my culturally responsive priming video as significantly more relevant or culturally appropriate compared to the alternative mainstream video. Findings on the positive effects of valence and self-efficacy are discussed in support of current literature. Negative effects of expectancy are discussed in terms of stereotype threat. The implications and applications for trainers and researchers in training and minority education are followed by a consideration of this study’s limitations and suggestions for future research.

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