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An Examination of the Competencies and Professional Development Needs of Extension Officers in the Caribbean Community (Caricom)

Material Information

Title:
An Examination of the Competencies and Professional Development Needs of Extension Officers in the Caribbean Community (Caricom)
Creator:
Samuel, Norma
Place of Publication:
[Gainesville, Fla.]
Florida
Publisher:
University of Florida
Publication Date:
Language:
english
Physical Description:
1 online resource (199 p.)

Thesis/Dissertation Information

Degree:
Doctorate ( Ph.D.)
Degree Grantor:
University of Florida
Degree Disciplines:
Agricultural Education and Communication
Committee Chair:
HARDER,AMY MARIE
Committee Co-Chair:
ISRAEL,GLENN D
Committee Members:
ROBERTS II,THOMAS G
SAMMONS,DAVID J
KUMARAN,MUTHUSAMI
Graduation Date:
8/9/2014

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Agriculture ( jstor )
Collaboration ( jstor )
Communications technology ( jstor )
Confidence interval ( jstor )
Education ( jstor )
Educational evaluation ( jstor )
Extension education ( jstor )
Professional development ( jstor )
Professionalism ( jstor )
Project planning ( jstor )
Agricultural Education and Communication -- Dissertations, Academic -- UF
caricom -- competencies -- extension
Genre:
bibliography ( marcgt )
theses ( marcgt )
government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent) ( marcgt )
born-digital ( sobekcm )
Electronic Thesis or Dissertation
Agricultural Education and Communication thesis, Ph.D.

Notes

Abstract:
The need exists for extension systems within the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to identify and adopt competency standards, so appropriate training can be provided for extension officers to effectively address the needs of the community. This study utilized the Borich (1980) needs assessment tool to identify training needs of extension officers based on their perception of the importance, level of knowledge and application of 102 competency items in eight competency areas (Professionalism and Professional Development; Extension Organization and Administration; Program Planning and Development; Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods; Extension Program Evaluation; Information and Communication Technologies; Subject Matter Expertise; and External Linkages). Twelve extension systems within CARICOM participated in the study. The objectives of the study were to: (i) describe extension officers perceived importance, level of knowledge, and application in the competency areas; (ii) determine training needs for specific competencies based on gaps between perceptions of importance and knowledge and gaps between knowledge and application in identified competencies and competency areas; and (iii) Determine if differences existed between extension officers perceptions of competency importance, knowledge, and application based on gender and level of education and relationships that existed for age and length of employment, for each competency area. Background information is provided on Extension within CARICOM along with a review of competency models and studies from various parts of the world. The study population was all frontline extension officers within the participating countries (N=400). A response rate of 55% was achieved. Cronbachs alpha was used to measure the reliability of the items and the data was analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics. The results showed extension officers perceptions of importance, knowledge, and application were above average for all eight competency areas. The highest mean scores were observed in Extension Organization and Administration and the lowest mean scores for External Linkages. Evaluation of Extension Programs was the competency area with the greatest need for training. Significant differences were observed between the independent variables: gender and level of education and the dependent variables/competency areas. Correlation also existed between the independent variables: year born and years of experience and the dependent variables. ( en )
General Note:
In the series University of Florida Digital Collections.
General Note:
Includes vita.
Bibliography:
Includes bibliographical references.
Source of Description:
Description based on online resource; title from PDF title page.
Source of Description:
This bibliographic record is available under the Creative Commons CC0 public domain dedication. The University of Florida Libraries, as creator of this bibliographic record, has waived all rights to it worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
Thesis:
Thesis (Ph.D.)--University of Florida, 2014.
Local:
Adviser: HARDER,AMY MARIE.
Local:
Co-adviser: ISRAEL,GLENN D.
Electronic Access:
RESTRICTED TO UF STUDENTS, STAFF, FACULTY, AND ON-CAMPUS USE UNTIL 2015-08-31
Statement of Responsibility:
by Norma Samuel.

Record Information

Source Institution:
UFRGP
Rights Management:
Applicable rights reserved.
Embargo Date:
8/31/2015
Classification:
LD1780 2014 ( lcc )

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AN EXAMINATION OF TH E COMPETENCIES AND P ROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT NEEDS OF EXTENSION OFFICERS I N THE CARIBBEAN COMMUNITY (CARICOM) By NORMA RAMONA SAMUEL A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2014

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© 2014 Norma Ramona Samuel

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This research project is dedicated to my very patient and u nderstanding husband, Lesroy and my wonderful children: Kadeem, Kianna, and Kailey.

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4 ACKNOWLEDGMENTS Words cannot express my gratitude to my dear husband, Lesroy and our children, Kadeem, Kianna, and Kailey for their love and support as I pursued the ar duous task of completing a doctoral degree while working full time and being a mother of three very active kids. I am especially thankful for the constant words of inspiration I received from my siblings. Special thanks to my sister, Nalda often rescue d me on weekends by ironing the uniforms , or braiding their hair in order for me to get my assignments done. Many thanks to my graduate committee: Chair, Amy Harder and members: Glen Israel, Muthusami Kumaran, Grady Roberts, and David Sammons, for thei r guidance during this journey. Each one of you have provided valuable input to making the outcome of this research a high quality product. I am forever indebted to you for your constant support throughout the process. I am very thankful for my coincid ental meeting with Gregg Rawlins of IICA, who after a brief introduction at the Caribbean Food Crops Society Meeting in Port of Spain, Trinidad held multiple Skype conversations with me on approaches to get the contact information and endorsement of countr ies to participate in the study. I am truly grateful for all the Extension personnel throughout CARICOM who took time from their busy schedules to make arrangements for my visit and to stress the importance of my research to their counterparts. To the su rvey respondents, words cannot express how grateful I am that you took the time to fill out my rather lengthy survey instrument. To my network of colleagues from across CARICOM who were at ECIAF with either myself or my husband, or friends I made over the years; a tremendous thank you s. Some provided

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5 accommodation , meals , and or transportation which are deeply appreciated. My sincerest gratitude is also extended to the Marketing Department of LIAT , The Caribbean Airline, for providing discounted airfares to travel through the region. I would also like to thank my coworkers throughout UF/IFAS Extension system and the UF/IFAS Extension Marion County Master Gardeners for their constant words of enco uragement and for helping to carry my workload, especially during my extended absence from work to complete my dissertation. To UF/IFAS Administration thank you for awarding me with a Professional Development mini grant and UF/IFAS Global Office for seeing the importance of my dissertation research and assisted with funding. To my colleagues who provided statistical guidance: Bryan Terry, Milton Newberry, Lendel Narine, Luke Connor , and Sungur Gurel, thank you very much. To my dear friend Natasha Masciarel li, thank you for constantly reassuring me that the end is near, even when I felt there was no light at the end of the tunnel. I am most thankful to God for giving me the health and strength to accomplish this milestone on minimal sleep at night. I am loo king forward to many long restful nights and a career path that will help me to continue to make meaningful change in the lives of the people I serve.

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6 TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 4 LIST OF TABLES ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 9 LIST OF FIGURES ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 13 LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS ................................ ................................ ........................... 14 ABSTRACT ................................ ................................ ................................ ................... 16 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION ................................ ................................ ................................ .... 18 Background on Extension in the Caribbean ................................ ............................ 18 Why the CARICOM Approach ................................ ................................ ................ 26 Competencies Defined ................................ ................................ ............................ 29 Why do Organizations Need Competencies? ................................ ......................... 32 Gap Analysis to Determine Training/Professional Development Needs ................. 34 Statement of the Problem ................................ ................................ ....................... 35 Purpose of Study / Research Objectives ................................ ................................ 35 Theoretical Framework ................................ ................................ ........................... 36 Significance of the study ................................ ................................ ......................... 40 Definition of Ter ms ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 40 Assumptions and Limitations of Study ................................ ................................ .... 41 2 REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE ................................ ................................ ............ 45 Competency Models in United States Extension System ................................ ....... 45 U.S. Extension Competency Models and Studies ................................ ................... 46 International Comp etency Studies Related to Extension Competencies in the Caribbean ................................ ................................ ................................ ............ 53 Extension Competency Studies from Africa ................................ ............................ 57 Competency Studie s from the Middle East ................................ ............................. 58 Relationship Between Demographic Characteristics and Competencies ............... 62 Assessment of the Competency Studie s Presented ................................ ............... 63 Chapter Summary ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 65 3 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY ................................ ................................ ............... 77 Overvie w of Methodology ................................ ................................ ....................... 77 Population and Sampling ................................ ................................ ........................ 77 Instrumentation ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 79 V alidity and Reliability ................................ ................................ ............................. 80

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7 Data Collection ................................ ................................ ................................ ....... 81 Response Rates ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 83 Dat a Analysis ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 84 knowledge, and application for identified competency area. ......................... 85 Objective 2: Determine training needs for specific competencies based on gaps between perceptions of importance and knowledge and gaps between knowledge and application in identified competencies. .................. 86 Objective 3: perceptions of competency importance, knowledge, and application based on selected demographic characteristics (age, gender, length of employment, and level o f education) for each competency area .................. 87 Demographics ................................ ................................ ................................ ......... 88 4 FINDINGS ................................ ................................ ................................ ............... 97 Findings Related to Objective 1: ................................ ................................ ............. 97 application for identified competencies ................................ ................................ 97 Findings Related to Objective 2: ................................ ................................ ............. 99 Determine training needs for specific competencies based on gaps between perceptions of importance and knowledge and gaps between knowledge and application in identified competencies. ................................ ................................ 99 Findings Related to Objective 3: ................................ ................................ ........... 106 Determine if differences existed be competency importance based on selected demographic characteristics (age, gender, length of employment, and level of education) for each competency area. ................................ ................................ ................................ .................. 106 Gender ................................ ................................ ................................ ........... 106 Actual Year Born ................................ ................................ ............................ 107 Level of Education ................................ ................................ .......................... 108 Profes sionalism and professional development ................................ ....... 108 Extension organization and administration ................................ .............. 109 Evaluation of extension programs ................................ ............................ 110 Information and communication technologies ................................ .......... 110 Years of Experience ................................ ................................ ....................... 110 Chapter Summary ................................ ................................ ................................ . 111 5 CONCLUSIONS, IMPLICATIONS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS ......................... 155 Summary of Study ................................ ................................ ................................ 155 Conclusions and Implications ................................ ................................ ............... 157 Knowledge and Application for Identified Competency Areas ..................... 159 Objective two: Training Needs for Specific Competencies Based on Gaps Between Perceptions of Importance and Knowledge and Gaps Between Knowledge and Application in Identified Competencies .............................. 161

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8 Knowledge ................................ ................................ ............................... 162 Application ................................ ................................ ............................... 163 Objective three: Differences Between Extens Competency Importance, Knowledge and Application Based on Selected Demographic Characteristics for Each Competency Area. ......................... 167 Gender ................................ ................................ ................................ ..... 167 Age ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 167 Education ................................ ................................ ................................ . 168 Years of experience ................................ ................................ ................. 170 Recommendations for Practice ................................ ................................ ............. 171 Recommendations for Future Research ................................ ............................... 173 APPENDIX; SURVEY INSTRUMENT ................................ ................................ ......... 176 LIST OF REFERENCES ................................ ................................ ............................. 188 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ................................ ................................ .......................... 199

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9 LIST OF TABLES Table page 1 1 Area, Population and GDP Per Capita of CARICOM Countries ........................ 44 2 1 Core Competencies of the Cooperative Extension System ................................ 67 2 2 YES! (You, Extension and Success) Model Texas AgriLife Extension ............. 68 2 3 Michigan State University Extension (MSUE) Core Competency Initiative Model ................................ ................................ ................................ .................. 69 2 4 Core Competencies for North Carolina Cooperative Extension .......................... 70 2 5 Twelve Key Competencies of MAP* ................................ ................................ ... 71 2 6 Comparison of U.S. Competency Models ................................ ........................... 72 2 7 Comparison of Competency Studies in Other Parts of the World ....................... 74 3 1 Scale for Interpreting the Level of Competence in Each Competency Area for Importance, Knowledge, and Application ................................ ........................... 90 3 2 ................................ ............................. 90 3 3 ... 90 3 4 Response Rates, Base Weights, Non response Weights and Relative Weights of the Population ................................ ................................ ................... 91 3 5 Demographics of Extension Officers Within CARICOM Based on Relative Non Response Weights ................................ ................................ ...................... 92 4 1 Overall Means for Perception of Importance in Competency Areas for CARICOM Calculated By Relative Nonresponse Weights ............................... 113 4 2 Overall Means for Perception of Knowledge in Competency Areas for CARICOM Calculated By Relative Nonresponse Weights ............................... 113 4 3 Overall Means for Perception of Application in Competency Areas for CARICOM Calculated By Relative Nonresponse Weights ............................... 114 4 4 Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area I Professionalism and Professional Development ................................ ............... 114 4 5 KMWDS Co nfidence Interval for Competency Area I Professionalism and Professional Development ................................ ................................ ................ 115

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10 4 6 Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area I Professionalism and Professional Development ................................ ............... 116 4 7 AMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area I Professionalism and Professional Development ................................ ................................ ................ 117 4 8 Knowl edge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area II Extension Organization and Administration ................................ ...................... 118 4 9 KMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area II Extension Organization and Admin istration ................................ ................................ ....... 118 4 10 Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area II Extension Organization and Administration ................................ ...................... 119 4 11 AMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area II Extension Organization and Administration ................................ ................................ ....... 119 4 12 Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area III Program Planning a nd Development ................................ ................................ 120 4 13 KMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area III Program Planning and Development ................................ ................................ ............................. 121 4 14 Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area III Program Planning and Development ................................ ................................ 122 4 15 AMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area III Program Planning and Development ................................ ................................ ............................. 122 4 16 Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area IV Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods ................................ .......................... 123 4 17 KMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area IV Extension Teaching Tools and Methods ................................ ................................ ........................... 124 4 18 Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area IV Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods ................................ .......................... 125 4 19 AMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area IV Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods ................................ ................................ ........................... 1 25 4 20 Knowledge Mean Weighted Discr epancy Scores: Competency Area V Evaluation of Extension Programs ................................ ................................ .... 126 4 21 KMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area V Evaluation of Extension Programs ................................ ................................ ......................... 127

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11 4 22 Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area V Evaluation of Extension Programs ................................ ................................ .... 127 4 23 AMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area V Evaluation of Extension Programs ................................ ................................ ......................... 128 4 24 Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area VI Information and Communication Technologies ................................ ................. 129 4 25 KMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area VI Information and Communication Technologies ................................ ................................ .......... 129 4 26 Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area VI Information and Communication Technologies ................................ ................. 130 4 27 AMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area VI Information and Communication Technologies ................................ ................................ .......... 130 4 28 Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores Competency Area VII: Subject Matter Expertise ................................ ................................ .................. 131 4 29 KMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area VII Subj ect Matter Expertise ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 131 4 30 Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area VII Subject Matter Expertise ................................ ................................ .................. 132 4 3 1 AMWDS Confidence interval for competency area VII Subject Matter Expertise ................................ ................................ ................................ .......... 132 4 32 Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores Competency Area VIII: External Linkages ................................ ................................ ............................. 133 4 33 KMWDS Confidence interval for competency area VII External Linkages .... 133 4 34 Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Are a VIII External Linkages ................................ ................................ ............................. 134 4 35 AMWDS Confidence Interval for Competency Area VIII External Linkages . 135 4 36 Number of Pri ority Training Items for Knowledge and Application Per Competency Area ................................ ................................ ............................. 136 4 37 Competency Items where Training is a Priority to Increase Application Upper Limit of the CI Combined with the A MWDS ................................ ........... 136 4 38 t test Analysis of Gender ................................ ................................ .................. 139

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12 4 39 Knowledge for I nformation and Communication Technologies ......................... 140 4 40 Application for Information and Communication Technologies ......................... 140 4 41 Tests of Between Subjects Effects. Professionalism and Professional Development Knowledge ................................ ................................ ............... 141 4 42 Tests of Between Subjects Effects. Extension Organization and Administration Importance ................................ ................................ ............. 141 4 43 Tests of Between Subjects Effects. Extension Organization and Administration Knowledge ................................ ................................ .............. 141 4 44 Tests of Between Subjects Effects. Extension Organization and Administration Application ................................ ................................ ............. 142 4 45 Tests of Between Subjects Effects. Evaluation of Extension Programs Knowledge ................................ ................................ ................................ ........ 142 4 46 Tests of Between Subjects Effects. Information and Communication Technologies Knowledge ................................ ................................ ............... 142 4 47 and Importance for Information and Communication Technologies .................. 143 4 48 of Years of Experience and Knowledge for Information and Communication Technologies ................. 143 4 49 and application for Infor mation and Communication Technologies ................. 144 4 50 and Importance of External Linkages ................................ ............................... 144

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13 LIST OF FIGURES Figure page 1 1 Map of CARICOM ................................ ................................ ............................... 43 2 1 Professional Competency Development Model ................................ .................. 76 3 1 Age distribution of Extension officers in CARICOM ................................ ............ 94 3 2 Level of Education ................................ ................................ .............................. 95 3 3 Years of experience categories of Extension Officers in CARICOM ................... 96 4 1 Upper and lower confidence interval (CI) and means for each competency area Importance. ................................ ................................ ........................... 145 4 2 Upper and lower confidence interval (CI) and means for each competency area Knowledge. ................................ ................................ ............................ 146 4 3 Upper and lower confidence interval (CI) and means for each competency area Application. ................................ ................................ ............................ 147 4 4 Number of priority training items for application per competency area. ............ 148 4 5 Scatter plot of Year Born and Knowledge for Information and Communication Technologies competency area. ................................ ................................ ....... 149 4 6 Scatterplot of year born and application for Information and Communication Technologies c ompetency area. ................................ ................................ ....... 150 4 7 Scatterplot of Years of experience and Importance for Information and Communication Technologies competency area. ................................ ............. 151 4 8 Scatterplot of Years of experience and Knowledge for Information and Communication Technologies competency area. ................................ ............. 152 4 9 Scatterplot of Years of experience and Application for I nformation and Communication Technologies competency area. ................................ ............. 153 4 10 Scatterplot of Years of Experience and Importance for External Linkages competency area. ................................ ................................ ............................. 154 5 1 CARICOM Extension Competency Framework. ................................ ............... 175

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14 LIST OF ABBREVIATIONS 4HPRKC 4 H Professional, Research, Knowledge and Competencies (USA) AEI Agriculture Extension Instructor (Iran) BADMC Barbados Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation BRC BGSL CACHE CAEP CAEPNet Blue Ribbon Commission Belize, Grenada, and St. Lucia Caribbean Council for Higher Education Caribbean Agricultural Extension Project Caribbean Agricultural Provider CAP CARDI Community Agricultural Policy Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute CARICOM Caribbean Community CASE College of Agriculture, Science and Education (Jamaica) CDEMA CI Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Age ncy Confidence Interval CIA Central Intelligence Agency (USA) CTA Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Co operation ECIAF Eastern Caribbean Institute of Agriculture and Forestry (Trinidad) ECOP Extension Committee on Organization and Policy (USA ) GDP Gross Domestic Product GFRAS Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services ICT Information and Communication Technologies IICA Inter American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture LIAT Leeward Island Air Transport MAP Managerial Assessment of Proficiency

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15 MFP Ministry of Food Production MG MSUE Master Gardener Michigan State University Extension (USA) MUCIA NAREI Midwest Universities Consortium for International Activities, Inc. National Agriculture Research and Extension Institute (Guyana) NCCE North Carolina Cooperative Extension (USA) NWFP North West Frontier Province (Pakistan) PODC Personnel and Organizational Development Committee (USA) RADA Rural Agricultural Development Authority (Jamaica) SELD Southern Extension Leadership Developmen t (team) (USA) SJPP Samuel Jackson Prescod Polytechnic (Barbados) SPSS TT&TI USA Statistical Package for Social Sciences Technology, Training and Technical Information (a division of RADA) (Jamaica) United States of America USAID United States Age ncy for International Development UTT University of Trinidad and Tobago UWI University of the West Indies VCE Virginia Cooperative Extension VEA Village Extension Agent ZEO Zonal Extension Officer (Nigeria)

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16 Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy AN EXAMINATION OF TH E COMPETENCIES AND P ROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT NEEDS OF EXTENSION OFFICERS I N THE CARIBBEA N COMMUNITY (CARICOM) By Norma Ramona Samuel August 2014 Chair: Amy Harder Major: Agricultural Education and Communication The need exists for extension systems within the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to identify and adopt competency standards, so appr opriate training can be provided for extension officers to effectively address the needs of the community. This study utilized the Borich (1980) needs assessment tool to identify training needs of extension officers based on their perception of the impor tance, level of knowledge and application of 102 competency items in eight competency areas (Professionalism and Professional Development; Extension Organization and Administration; Program Planning and Development; Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods; E xtension Program Evaluation; Information and Communication Technologies; Subject Matter Expertise; and External Linkages). Twelve extension systems with in CARICOM participated in the study. The objectives of the study were to: (i) d escribe extension offi importance, level of knowledge , and application in the competency areas ; (ii) d etermine training needs for specific competencies based on gaps between perceptions of importance and knowledge and gaps between knowledge and application in ide ntified

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17 competencies and competency areas ; and (iii) Determine if differences exist ed between , knowledge, and application based on gender and level of education and relationships that existed for age and length of employment, for each competency area . B ackground information is provided on Extension within CARICOM along with a review of competency models and studies from various parts of the world. The study population was all frontline extension offi cers within the participating countries (N=400). reliability of the items and the data was analyzed using descriptive and inferential statistics. The results showed extension and application were above average for all eight competency areas. The highest mean scores were observed in Extension Organization and Administration and the lowest mean scores for External Linkages. Evalu ation of Extension Programs was the competency area with t he greatest need for training. Significant differences were observed between the independent variables: gender and level of education and the dependent variables/competency areas. Correlation also existed between the independent variables: year born and years of experience and the dependent variables.

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18 CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION The need exists for extension systems within the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to develop competency standards for extension officers; and to identify areas of needed professional development, in order to effectively address current and emerging issues at national and regional levels. This chapter describes background information of extension in the Caribbean to provide readers with an understanding of its history and current trends. A justification for the regional/CARICOM approach to conducting the study is also provided. Competencies are defined and information provided on the reasons why organizations find the use of compe tencies paramount to gaining a competitive advantage. A gap analysis is outlined to demonstrate how employee competencies can be assessed and a description of how businesses develop effective competency programs is presented. The theoretical framework fo rming the basis of the study is outlined. The significance of the study to CARICOM and its Associate Member States is provided. The terms to provide the reader an understanding of extension in the region and competency terminologies are defined. Finally , the assumptions and limitations of the study are presented. Background on Extension in the Caribbean The advent of agricultural extension in the Caribbean dates back to 1765 when the British began establishing botanical gardens in the region that were ce nters for propagation and distribution of plant material for commercial purposes (Campbell & Henderson, 1996). Agricultural instructors (extension officers) were appointed in the region as early as 1901 to travel between the islands to train farmers in th e areas of plant propagation and improved cultural practices to increase crop production. The

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19 instructors spent a considerable amount of time involved in performing labor intensive activities, such as spraying and tree planting on farms (Campbell & Hender son, 1996). The duties of an extension worker, then and now, include regulatory and support/educational service fu nctions. The dual role presented a problem for many officers as they were placed in an awkward position when instances arose to serve both f unctions to the same farmer (Campbell & Henderson, 1996). To avoid this situation conducting field trials and communicated with small farmers primarily in a social setting. Small farmers were very receptive of the new technology introduced through this show and tell approach of the on farm field trials because of their personal relationship with the officer (Campbell & Henderson, 1996). From 1967 to 1992, the Department of Agricultural Extension at the University of the West Indies (UWI), St. Augustine, conducted annual extension training courses for extension officers in the Caribbean region. The trainings were developed to meet the specific needs of the islands and disti nct clientele groups. According to Campbell and practitioners and administrators new attitudes and understanding of the role of extension, and new skills in extension program deve lopment, program execution, and Activities, Inc. (MUCIA) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) collaborated to initiate the Caribbean Agricultural Extension Project (CAEP), to further the development of extension in the region. The CAEP examined the

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20 functionality of the extension system as a whole, looking at human resource deve lopment, program planning and implementation, linkages, and provision of resource materials for execution of successful extension programming (Campbell & Henderson, 1996). Annual extension officer in service trainings were a major component of the CAEP. The annual trainings were discontinued after funding was exhausted. According to Jennifer Maynard, Interim Director of Agriculture in Antigua and Barbuda, this created a void in professional development training and the level of performance of officers ha s declined as a result (J . Maynard, personal communication, January 8, 2009). Extension in the Caribbean is offered as a public good primarily through the Extension Division of the Ministry of Agriculture in each country. In Jamaica, extension is offered through a statutory body called the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) (RADA, 2010). Barbados is unique in that it has two services, a public extension service provided through the Ministry of Agriculture and extension provided through a semi autonomous agency / statutory body, the Barbados Agricultural Development and Marketing Corporation (BADMC). In Guyana extension service delivery falls under the National Agricultural Research and Extension Institute (NAREI), (Chintananie, 2012). Additi onally, the Guyana Rice Development Board provides extension services related to rice. Governments in the region provided substantial funding to support extension activities in the 1960s and 1970s. However, funding for extension in Latin America and the C aribbean started to decline in the 1980s and 1990s, resulting in a search for more cost effective strategies for development, delivery, and application of new agricultural

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21 information (Roseboom, MacMahon, Ekanayake, & John Abraham, 2006). Chintananie (201 2) foresee public extension will continue to be the primary service provider in Guyana, as it is relied upon heavily by small, economically disadvantaged farmers. Thus, the need exists for an increased level of professionalism, efficiency, and productivit y in services rendered by extension officers. Several countries in the region have sought to restructure their extension system in recent years through a series of institutional reforms (Roseboom et al., 2006). For example, in 2012 Suriname began to devel op a comprehensive extension restructuring plan to include: identifying measures of effectiveness and measuring impact of service, extension officer profile, training needs of extension staff and farmers, incentive system for extension workers, and feasibi lity of commercialization of extension (Suriname Business Forum, 2012). From 1952 to 2011, extension services in Guyana was offered through the Ministry of Agriculture and was dominated by the training and visit (T&V) systems approach, which focused on co mmodity related technology transfer. A farm systems approach was adopted in 2011 with the introduction of NAREI as the governing extension body. The farm systems approach looks at family activities on and off the of a farming enterprise (Chintananie, 2012). Extension officers in the Caribbean are primarily hired through the public service commission (Campbell, 1999) , the human resource entity of the public sector . Officers typically have a two year diploma in agriculture (Keithley Armory, Director of Agriculture Nevis, personal communication, March 9, 2011). Some front line extension officers do possess undergraduate and graduate degrees in specific subject are as such as

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22 horticulture, entomology, and agronomy (Seepersad & Ganpat, 2008). Multiple instit utions of higher learning exist in the region offering tertiary education in agriculture in preparation for a career in the field of agriculture . These include : the University of the West Indies (UWI) , primarily the St. Augu s tine Campus in Trinidad; The University of Trinidad and Tobago (UTT) ; University of Guyana; The College of Agriculture, Science, and Education (CASE) in Jamaica; Dominica State College, and Sa muel Jackman Prescod Polytechnic (SJPP) in Barbados. A review of the websites of the institutions listed show that students receive comprehensive training in the field of agriculture; however, not all offer classes related to extension methods or adult tea ching and learning. For example, CASE offers an associate of science in General Agriculture; a diploma in Agriculture, and a b achelor of t echnology in Agri Production and Food Systems Management. A review of the courses required for these majors reveal ed that there we re no courses in extension methodology or adult teaching and learning. Diploma in Agriculture requires a Cooperative Internship Education Programme that gives students the opportunity to gain work experience in industry. This is possi bly an avenue for students to gain exposure to extension before graduation. The UTT Eastern Caribbean Institute of Agriculture and Forestry ( ECIAF ) Campus offers a two year diploma in Agriculture and students are required to take course s in Statistics and Research Methods; Communications and Current Issues in Agriculture, and Extension Methods and Rural Development. Such required courses will allow students to gain a good understanding of extension before entering the field. A two year diploma in agr icul ture can be obtained from SJPP and it requires a course in communication skills and a 12 week in service in

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23 the agricultural sector. The two year associate degree in Agriculture Technology at the Dominica State College offers a semester of Agricultural Extension Methods. This brief review of the curricula is an indication of the wide variation that exists in preparation of potential employees for a career in extension. The adoption of competency standards in the region for extension officers would pro vide information to these institutions on the minimum requirements for entering the career field to facilitate standardization of curricula. The job description of the extension officer at the time of hiring may not reflect the current needs of the extensi on division as the extension director usually does not have input in developing the job description (Campbell & Saska, 1994). The Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) in Jamaica is an exception to the rule, as new hires are interviewed by a com mittee selected by RADA instead of the Jamaica Public Service Commission (M. Young, Director of Technology, Training and Technical Information, personal communication, December 5, 2013). A new employee training program was developed and attempted by a few countries in the region, but never became established (Campbell, 1999; Campbell & Saska, 1994). There is little room for upward mobility in extension in the region and this has resulted in a de motivation of the staff (Campbell & Saska, 1994). Campbell and Henderson (1996) mentioned that extension program planning is often done by personnel that lack the knowledge of the role of extension and how it can effectively utilize its resources to meet clientele needs. Roseboom et al. (2006) indicated that som e extension systems in Latin America and the Caribbean (including the CARICOM territories of Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago) have adopted a

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24 demand driven approach by seeking input from clientele to identify priority areas to be addressed. This has result ed in systems branching out from offering primarily technological advice, to also information on finances, record keeping, and market opportunities (Roseboom et al., 2006). Ganpat, Ragbir, and de Freitas ( 2009) noted extension in the Caribbean has been int egrating information communication technologies (ICTs), such as radio, television, cell phones, email, and Internet, into its progra mming efforts on a daily basis. computer. become facilitators in a relationship between the client and other information sources (Ganpat, et al., 2009, p. 119). This could be a challenge for extension in the region as some extension 15) with poorly trained extension officers unfamiliar with the new methods of com munication. Officers will need to develop skill sets to effectively utilize these tools in order to make maximum use of ICTs to conduct extension programs. The RADA/Jamaica is quite advance in its access and provision of technology. Each extension offic er in Jamaica is provided with a desktop computer and laptop with internet access and a cell phone. Extension officers also receive a global positioning system unit and training on its use (Lindsay & Powell, 2011). Extension in the region has become ver y pluralistic, with service being offered by the public sector, private industry, and non governmental organizations. Umaharan (2008) indicated that extension in the region often fails to produce information to

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25 farmers in a timely manner, and this has res ulted in farmers becoming more reliant on industry for information. Pauline Dowlath, the Extension Director in Trinidad and Tobago, confirmed that input suppliers are the leading source of information for farmers in Trinidad and Tobago with public extensi on lagging at third place (personal communication, March 8, 2012). In early 2013 the Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services (GFRAS) sponsored a meeting of regional extension experts to: obtain an update on extension services in the region; provide capaci ty development for the formation and launch of a regional extension network to strengthen extension advisory services in the Caribbean; and to introduce the participants to GFRAS. Extension experts from 10 CARICOM countries participated in the meeting alo ng with representatives from the UWI and GFRAS. Each country representative provided an overview of its extension system including strengths and weaknesses. The team of extension experts outlined a list of 43 problems affecting extension in the region. evaluation and reporting; low perception of extension held by decision makers; and lack 4). A list of items was provided as possible sol morale; more training in extension methodologies; increased use of modern technology; The GFRAS initiated meeting resulted in the format ion of the Caribbean Agricultural Extension Providers Network (CAEPNet). A list of 14 potential objectives practices within the region; provide a forum for networking; and f acilitate professional

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26 established, CAEPNet could be utilized as the vehicle to standardize extension systems across CARICOM to drive agricultural development. Why the CAR ICOM Approach The Caribbean Community (CARICOM) was established in 1973 with the States: Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Lucia, St. Kit ts and Nevis, St. Vincent and The Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago; and five Associate Member States: Anguilla, Bermud a, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, and Turks and Caicos Islands (CARICOM Secretariat, 2011). Figure 1 1 shows the location of the countries that make up CARICOM (Cruse & Rhiney, 2012). The countries range in size from 54 square kilometers (Bermuda ) to 214,969 square kilometers (Guyana). Population es timates range from just over 4,9 00 in Montserrat to over 9.8 million in Haiti (Cruse & Rhiney, 2012 ). A wide variation also exists in the per capita gross domestic product (GDP) , from as low as $671 U .S. in Haiti to as much as $86,000 U.S. in Bermuda (CIA World Factbook, 2013 & Cruse & Rhiney, 2012). The percentage contribution of agriculture to the GDP of each country is relatively small. There are only four countries where agriculture comprises mor e than 10% of the GDP: Belize, Dominica, Haiti, and Guyana ( see Table 1 1). The three main goals of CARICOM are: integration of economies; harmonization of foreign policies; and improved collaboration for efficient delivery of services in areas such as tec hnology, social and cultural issues, health, education, and

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27 telecommunications to benefit the people of the region (CARICOM Secretariat, 2011 & specialization and complement . and avoiding duplication of n.d., para.17). The Treaty of Chaguaramas has since been updated multiple times (1989, 1992, and 2000 ) to address new issues as they arise. However, the three overarching goa ls of CARICOM remain the same (Hornbeck, 2008). To reflect the changes , the Treaty of Chaguaramas is now called the Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas Establishing the Caribbean Community Including The CARICOM Single Market Economy. CARICOM is funded by the gov ernment of participating member states ( CARICOM Secretariat, 2011). The formation of CARICOM has allowed for free movement of goods, capital, people, and the formation of a number of regional policies, programs, and organizations that has served the regio n well. For example, the Caribbean Exami nation Council (Carrington, 2003 ) , is a testing agency that provides examinations and award s certificates to students at the secondary and post secondary levels in areas tested in 16 CARICOM countries (Caribbean Exa minations Council, 2011). Another regional agency is the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) formed in 1991 and charged with providing an immediate and coordinated response to CARICOM member state(s) affected by a disastrous event (CDEM A, 2014). Yet another well recognized institution of CARICOM is the Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI), formed in 1972. CARDI identified in n

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28 and other regional organizations shows that CARICOM plays an integral role in addressing current and emerging issues at a regional level with the support of the government of partic ipating countries. In an effort to reduce the high food import bills of CARICOM member states, CARICOM launched a Regional Policy for Food and Nutrition Security in 2010. It takes into consideration all aspects of the food value chain to produce safe, aff ordable, and nutritious food for the people of the region (Jagdeo, 2011). The Jagdeo Initiative on Agriculture named after the former president of Guyana, Bharrat Jagdeo, and adopted by the CARICOM heads of government in 2005 identified 10 key binding con straints to agriculture development in the region and strategies for removal in order for the region to be food secure by the year 2015 (CARICOM Secretariat, 2007). L ack of skilled human resources wa s listed as one of the key binding constraints to accomp lishing the vision of the Jagdeo initiative. The CARICOM Community Agricultural Policy (CAP) adopted in 2010 outlines a number of strategic actions to address each of the key binding constraints of the Jagdeo Initiative. CAP aims to improve the lives of the people within CARICOM through food security and economic growth of the agricultural sector through sustainable and competitive agricultural development. CAP has five pillars of policy intervention: food and nutrition security; production trade value chain; natural resources, rural modernization; and agriculture knowledge and information (CTA, 2012). The strategic action s listed to address the lack of skilled human resources are development of appropriate human resources delivery systems; public educa tion on agriculture; and technical cooperation and dissemination of knowledge on agriculture (Little, n.d). There

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29 are 47 policy objectives and 10 immediate priorities. Among the top ten priorities is a modern agricultural extension system (CTA, 2012). Bo urne (2008), president of the Caribbean Development Bank (an associate institution of CARICOM) 2001 2011, suggested that in order to enhance sustainable growth and development of Caribbean agr iculture, extension services have a role in the generation and transfer of knowledge to agriculture enterprises. Bourne (2008) suggested the implementation of well functioning public policy with regards to extension [and ] provide re development process. CARICOM has acknowledged modernization of agricultural extension services provided in the region is required to achieve the objectives of the CAP. This study will provide r esearch based information to CARICOM and CAEPNet for the regional adoption of competency standards needed to work in the field , and identify priority areas of training for effective job performance. The adoption of regional competency standards and support ing policy for extension will allow for coordinated efforts in sharing of resources to reduce duplication of efforts and keep costs to a minimum. Competencies Defined According to Byham and Moyer (2005), a competency can have three different interpretatio ns: organizational, job/role, or personal. Generally speaking, competencies are the combined sets of skills, knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors necessary for effective job performance (World Vision, n.d.). Organizational competencies depict the organiza tion as a whole and the identifying characteristics that make it competitive. Organizational competencies are unique and difficult to replicate by the competition

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30 because of their superiority, have the potential to open new markets, and consider the benef its of the end product to the clients and the financial stability of the organization (McIntire, 2008). Organizational competencies are commonly referred to as core unique b undle of technical know In other words, core competencies are not specific to any particular role, but applicable across the organization. The identification of core competencies to plan effectiv ely for future growth and to increase competitive advantage is commonplace in the field of business (Green, 1999). Examples of organizational competencies in the context of the Florida Cooperative Extension System are: excellence providing quality servic e; diversity of programs and personnel; global involvement outreach beyond state and national borders; and accountability good stewards of allocated resources. Job or role competency pertains to the things an individual employee must demonstrate in order to be effective in performing his/her duties at a unit, departmental , or organizational level (Byham & Moyer 2005). Byham and Moyer (2005) recommended that human resource systems be built around job or role competencies (p. 4) (at time of recruitment or employee appraisals) and (p. 4) such as training needs, succ ession planning or compensation. Job or role competencies can change depending on the role people play in an organization. Competencies should be wel l defined and made known to employees. Individuals should take note of job or role competencies because they define organizational expectations and can affect opportunities for career advancement.

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31 Personal competencies are those skills and abilities that allow an individual to perform job duties at a superior level based on the expected standards of employment (Byham & Moyer 2005). They generally outline the minimum required qualifications for the job and are important tools in determining if applicants h ave the minimum skills for effective job performance (Byham & Moyer, 2005). The three types of competencies can be further explained by placing them in the context of e xtension. Using the Florida Cooperative Extension system as an example , organizationa l competencies include a commitment to excellence, diversity, global involvement, and accountability. The researcher is an extension faculty member in Florida and serves as a residential horticulture agent and Master Gardener (MG) coordinator. In the job /role of MG coordinator, competency in volunteer development, program planning, teaching, and evaluation are a must. The researcher is currently the chair of the 2014 Central District MG Conference. In the job/role of chair, leadership, teamwork, and com munication skills are essential. Examples of personal competencies include subject matter or technical expertise, proactive, project and goal focus, relate well to others, and creative. Personal competencies are specific to the individual and not the job /role. Personal competencies can be applicable across multiple jobs/roles. people who can be flexible and adapt to changing jobs/roles within the organization. This must be coupled with appropriate training and knowledge of the subject matter. This study will focus on job/role competencies necessary for extension officers in CARICOM to perform their duties effectively. The job/role competency is similar to the single job competency model described by Mansfield (1996). The development of the

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32 single job competency model involves interviewing or surveying supervisors in a panel or focus group, the employee, and sometimes customers , to draft a list of 10 20 skills or t behaviors that describe what effective performers do and how to achieve effective The competencies used in this study were sel ected from a list of competencies the researcher found to be consistently identified in previous research as needed by extension officers in other parts of the world. Why do Organizations Need Competencies? During the last decade the work environment withi n organizations has changed tremendously (Wolff, 2006). Wolff (2006) indicated hiring based on qualifications (education) alone is no longer the ideal way for a company to become competitive. According to Pickett (1998), the future success of an organiza tion is based on having competent people that offer the organization a competitive advantage in the long run. Zingheim, Ledford and Schuster (1996) recommended that the competencies used by companies not be the obvious, but rather unique to maintain a com petitive advantage. Competencies are also being used in the public sector. Azmi (2010) indicated it is difficult to measure public sector output due to the wide range of duties performed by employees. The use of competencies by the public sector allows for uniformity in measuring outcomes, ability to identify low versus high performers, and allows for an increase in the quality of service be ing offered (Azmi, 2010). The S tate of New York sees the use of competencies as important due to the increasing d emands for effective utilization of human capital with diminishing resources (State of New York, 2012). New service being offered to the public (State of New York, 201 2).

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33 World Vision (n.d), an international nonprofit organization, considers competencies an important component of their organization . World Vision (n.d,) uses competencies build : to match the attitud ust have in order to do the job involves facilitation the individual must possess certain group facilitation skills such as managing groups, and knowledge of participatory learning in order to effectively handle that role. Competencies are also used by World Vision (n.d.) to determine staff progress and evaluate performance. The use of competencies allow for individual reflection and feedback of co workers and or supervisors to determine areas of inadequacies that need improvement. World Vision uses competencies to design learning opportuni ties for successful job perfo rmance and career advancement. d World Vision, n.d, p. 4). A search of the literature revealed recruitment, det ermination of staff development needs, and designing profess ional development opportunities appear to be most common use of competencies . Zingheim, Ledford, and Schuster (1996) indicated a few companies are using a competency based plus performance based

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34 approach to determine employee pay. They examined ten companies using this approach and found the competencies being rewarded by all were: customer focus, communication, team orientation, technical expertise, results orientation, leadership, adaptability, and innovation (Zingheim et al, 1996). Gap Analysis to Determine Training/Professional Development Needs A training need as defined by Halim and Ali (1998) is an observed gap between h a gap is viewed as a problem that must be addressed with suitable training in order to improve once the competencies needed for a position have been identified the existi ng staff must be assessed to see if they possess the competencies needed (New York State , model should be conducted. The gaps or the competencies with the lowest sc ores will provide the information needed to determine future training needs, resources needed and critical resource decisions ( New York State, 2012). The Borich (1980) needs assessment model was used by Waters and Haskell (1989), D lamini (2004) , Harder and Wingenbach (2008) and Harder, Ganpat, Moore, Strong, and Lindner (2013) to assess competency needs for extension personnel in Nevada, USA; Botswana and Swaziland; Texas, USA; and Belize, Grenada, and St. Lucia, respectively. The Borich needs a ssessment model is used to determine professional development needs based on information gathered using a survey assessment of the importance of a competency and their perceived level of proficiency in the comp etency are used to

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35 determine the training needs through a ranking process. The Borich (1980) method will be utilized in this study . Statement of the Problem CARICOM has a staggering food import bill estimated to be US$4.0 billion in 2008 (FAO Sub Regional Office for the Caribbean, 2011). In response to the high food import bill CARICOM has adopted a regional Food and Nutrition Security Policy to address issues related to nutrition and food security. Extension has been identified as a crucial element in a chieving and maintaining this goal. However, extension needs to reposition itself to meet this challenge by increasing individual and organizational effectiveness through the adoption of national and regional competency standards for extension officers. This study will propose a competency framework for the region and identify areas of needed professional development for current personnel . The adoption of the competency framework and implementation of relevant training opportunities will enhance the deli very of exceptional service to clientele; thereby, fostering needed economic growth in the agricultural sector. Purpose of Study / Research Objectives The purpose of this study wa s to develop a competency framework and determine professional development ne eds for extension officers in CARICOM and its Associate Member Territories. The objectives of the st udy we re to: 1. , and applica tion for identified competency areas . 2. Determine training nee ds for specific competencies based on gaps between perceptions of importance and knowledge and gaps between knowledge and application in identified competencies and competency areas . 3. Determine if differences exist ed of competency importance , knowledge, and application based on gender and level

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36 of education and relationships that existed for age and length of employment, for each competency area . Theoretical Framework The theoretical framework for this study is based on the competency approach that was developed by McClelland (1973) , McClelland (1973) was emphatic that it was insufficient to base workplace success on intelligence alone; instead, the potential for success was b est measured by the use of competencies. The competency approach has four basic assumptions: (a) performance measures should be discernible, (b) benchmarks for success should relate to life outcomes, for example, occupations and education, (c) competencie s should be clearly described in relation to life events, and (d) procedure for improving competencies should be made public (Harder, Place, Scheer, 2010; McCl elland, 1998). McClelland ( 1963 ) preferred the use of measurements of actual job performance to evaluate employees in place of intelligence and trait factors. Athey and Orth (1999) were of the view that intelligence and trait factors were inborn while competencies had to be acquired and nurtured. Once the competencies are clear to the employees with in an organization and they are cultivated, employee performance can be expected to be superior (Harder et al., 2010). Thus, the development of appropriate policies to support the adoption of a competency framework for extension officers in CARICOM and it s Associate Member Territories can be expected to improve employee job performance. Becker (1964) posited that human capital is an investment in education and training. Rodriguez & Loomis (2007) as cited by Kwon (2009) define human capital as ge, skills, competencies and attributes in individuals that facilitate the creation of personal, social and economic well

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37 skills through on the job experiences is an excellent means of facilitating increased productiv ity in employees. Human capital theory offers the opportunity for organizations to develop the essential capabilities and competencies needed to allow employees to generate and distribute knowledge (Lucarelli, 2004). The distribution of knowledge is a cri tical component of the job duties of an extension officer. Ogunade (2011) recommended a needs assessment be conducted before a human capital development strategy be implemented to identify the skills gap or competencies that should form the basis of trai ning. A targeted investment in education e, 2003). The adoption of a human capital development strategy will increase organizational competitiveness. Becker (1993) posited an investment in education any kind is the most signifi cant form of human capital. I On the job trainin economic productivity. Becker (1993) classified on the job training as general or specific. General training is beneficial to the employing agency, and any other agency within the field. of trainees by exactly the same amount in the firms providing the training as in other pecific training has a greater impact on productiv ity in the firm providing the training and may be of little or no use in another firm. A combination of general and specific training is preferred.

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38 Blundell, Dearden, Meghir, and Sianesi (1999) identified the three core acquired through formal education; and skills, competencies and expertise acquired based on returns to the individual, th e organization or employer, and the economy or society (Blundell et al, 1999; Kwon, 1999). From the individual perspective, a person foregoes the opportunity to generate income to pursue an education with the hope of higher earnings in the future. The or ganizational return on investment in human capital is closely tied to core competencies of the firm (Kwon, 2009). The employer makes an investment in training its workers in order to increase productivity and gain a competitive advantage on other firms (B effect from an investment in human capital. The premise is that the increased training and productivity of the individual will benefit others in the workplace, resulting in economic growth. Alm eida and Cho (2012) support the view of Becker (1993) that on the job training opportunities are necessary for economic growth. They agree human capital is developed primarily through on the job training and such training is especially important in firms where technological advances require the employee to acquire new skills to maintain a competitive advantage (Almeida & Cho, 2012). Mathur (1999) viewed human capital as a stimulus to advancing the use of new and existing technologies, thereby, resulting i n econo mic growth. Although valuable, on the job training is

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39 On the job training i s usually offered more by large companies with a significant amount of employees with formal education. Almei da and Cho (2012) reasoned small large initial costs of training, less open firms with little information and incentives to innovate, and those already with low skilled workers may experience particularly large barriers to [on the The defunct CAEP approach was designed to o vercome challenges associated with economies of scale. Similarly, the new CAEPNet hopes to achieve an economy of scale in its new efforts. It would be wise for CAEPNet to review the lessons learned by CAEP to chart a path to long term sustainability. Alme ndarez (2011) mentioned human capital formation as one of the six key components of economic development within CARICOM. Due to slowed economic creasing employee, organizational, national, and regional productivity through human capital formation and identified strategies for 2011, p. 5). This awareness of the importan ce of human capital to the increase in economic growth in the region will be crucial in tackling skills gaps or competencies identified as needed by extension officers in CARICOM. Schultz (1993) viewed extension as an agricultural input that should be impr oved in order to raise the economic productivity of farmers. Such an investment in human capital will modernize agriculture in less developed countries, and therefore spur economic growth. An understanding of the level of competency of extension officers in

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40 CARICOM and its Associate Member States and identified deficiency areas where training is needed will allow the extension system in the region to develop targeted training. The desired outcome of such investment in human capital is a highly competent team of extension officers in the region that perform their duties effec tively and efficiently to improve the productivity and standard of living of clientele served. Significance of the study There is a wealth of information pertaining to competencies i n the field of business when compared to extension. Competency research specific to extension in the CARICOM and its Associate Member Territories can be considered as l imited . Well defined competencies and professional development training needs will ena ble extension officers to remain current in subject matter and process areas of extension to allow them to effectively address clientele needs. This study will identify competency areas for extension officers that can be adopted by CARICOM to be used as a guide for new hires, to determine professional development trainings offered , and to be used as a basis for performance evaluation of officers. The information can also be used by the faculty of tertiary agriculture institutions in the region to determin e areas to address in the extension curriculum offered to students. Definition of Terms The terms identified here will give the reader a general understanding of the extension system in the Caribbean and terminology used in the area of competencies. CAEP: Caribbean Agricultural Extension Project Caribbean: This includes the islands in the Caribbean Sea, Guyana and Suriname in South America and Belize in Central America, and The Bahamas and Turks and Caicos in the North Atlantic Ocean.

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41 CARICOM: The Caribbean Community and Common Market established July 4, 1973 under the Treaty of Chaguaramas refers to 15 CARICOM Member States (Antigua and Barbuda, The Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lu cia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago; and five Associate Member Territories (Anguilla, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, and Turks and Caicos), (CARICOM Secretariat). The term CARICOM will be used throughou t the document to refer to the countries listed. Competencies: The application of knowledge, skills or abilities, and personal characteristics resulting in superior job performance (Ennis, 2008). mpetencies needed (Ennis, 2008, p. 5). Extension Officer: An extension officer is synonymous to an extension agent and is used throughout the Caribbean. Extension Program Areas: The three main extension program areas in the region are agriculture, 4 H youth development, and horticulture. St. Lucia has a family and consumer sciences extension officer (C. Pemberton, personal communication, 2010). The Rural Agricultural Deve lopment Authority (RADA) has social services/home economics extension officers on staff (RADA, n.d.). Front line Extension Officers: Refers to extension officers that are in the field working directly with clientele. or understanding about facts, rules, principles, guidelines, concepts, theories, or processes, needed to successfully Professional Development: Also referred to as in service training is the educa tional opportunities provided to extension officers to enable them to stay current in their field and become competent in their job performance. (Marelli et al., 2005, p. 534 ). Assumptions and Limitations of Study The researcher assumes that respondents will answer the survey questions honestly. The study is limited to the extent that only English speaking CARICOM T erritories and its Associate Member States mad e up the popula tion of this study . T he

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42 French (including Haiti), Spanish, and Dutch (including Suriname) speaking countries are omitted. Therefore, it would not be possible to generalize findings to the non English speaking countries of the Caribbean. Countries failing to respond by given participation deadline were not included in the study. Also, respondents who fail to complete more than one competency area on the survey instrument were discarded. Assumptions were also made about the relative importance of competenc ies in the performance of the duties of extension of ficers and, in turn, extension systems, agricultural productivity, and food security throughout CARICOM.

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43 Figure 1 1 . Map of CARICOM Source: Caribbean Atlas Project . Reproduced with permission of Roma in Cruse.

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44 Table 1 1 . Area, Population and GDP Per Capita of CARICOM Countries Country Area (Square Kilometers) Population GDP Per Capita (US Dollars) GDP Agriculture Sector (%) Anguilla 91 15,423 14,260 4 Antigua and Barbuda 442 88,710 11,442 4 Barb ados 430 274,000 11,718 3 Belize* 22,966 334,297 8,700 13 Bermuda* 54 69,467 86,000 0.7 British Virgin Islands 59 27,800 57,626 0.9 Cayman Islands 76 56,230 54,827 1.4 Dominica 751 67,757 5,649 20 Grenada 344 105,000 6,009 5 Guyana* 214,969 739,903 8,000 20.7 Haiti 27,750 9,893,000 671 25 Jamaica 10.991 2,751,000 5,179 6 Montserrat 102 4,922 8,897 1.6* St. Kitts and Nevis 269 53,000 10,038 2 St. Lucia 616 176,000 5,356 5 St. Vincent and the Grenadines 389 109,000 5,137 7 Suriname* 163,820 566, 846 12,300 8.9 The Bahamas 13,939 319,000 21,985 2 Trinidad and Tobago 5,128 1,346,000 15,206 0.3* Turks and Caicos Islands 430 38,354 35,422 1 Source: Cruse & Rhiney, 2012 and *CIA World Factbook, 2013

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45 CHAPTER 2 REVIEW OF THE LITERATURE Professiona l competencies are vital to the effective performance of job duties of educators of all kind. Thus, extension agents must be proficient in several competencies in order to be successful in the performance of job duties (Gibson & Brown, 2003). In a study of Virginia Cooperative Extension professionals Gibson and Brown (2003) found that extension officers do not have a common degree. Degree areas represented multiple disciplines such as horticulture, education, animal science, food and nutrition, and child development. This presents some difficulty in providing effective professional development programs to meet their needs. To be successful extension staff must take advantage of training opportunities that will increase their competency in the areas of p rocess of extension and subject matter (Gibson & Brown, extension must change if it's to keep pace with current trends, achieve national prominence, and regain its pre eminence in providing responsive educatio This chapter will focus on a review of the literature from around the world and highlight a few current extension competency studies, competencies currently being used in extension, and a propo sed conceptual competency framework. Competency Models in United States Extension System Stone and Bieber (1997) defined competency as the application of knowledge, technical skills and personal characteristics leading to outstanding performance. Competen cies can be depicted in a competency model, a descriptive tool that identifies the competencies necessary to function in a specified role within an organization (Ennis, 2008). Cooper and Graham (2001) indicated the success of the U.S. Cooperative

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46 Extensio n Service depends on retaining highly qualified, competent personnel, capable of addressing changes in society as they occur. Consequently, agents need to develop the competencies required for individual and organizational success. Extension is not stat ic and constantly changes to meet clientele needs. Extension faculty and staff must play a role in determining the relevant competencies applied to human resource systems, suc h as selection, training, performance appraisal, one and Bieber (1997) found to be truly effective, competency models must have strong and irrevocable ties to the strategic is sues of the extension organization. Identifying the competencies that will help to anticipate new ways of perceiving and thinking about complex problems should be the foundation on which Extension strives for relevance, usefulness and quali ty in our educational programs. (para. 3) When competencies identified by individuals or group of individuals are used to develop training it allows extension agents to self evaluate their level of competence and select trainings based on their shortcomings an d customized to their learning style. Many extension systems in the United States have developed competency models as a guide for training an d organizational development (Liles & Mustian, 2004). The competency models of the United States Cooperative Exten sion System, Texas AgriLife Extension, Michigan State University Extension ( MSUE ) , and North Carolina Cooperative Extension (NCCE) will be described and examples of competency studies from the U.S., the Caribbean, Africa, and the Middle East will be highli ghted. U.S. Extension Competency Models and Studies Cooperative Extension programs in the United States have developed various competen cy models to recruit and train e xtension agents. Harder et al. (2010)

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47 mentioned four examples: YES! (You, Extension and Success) Model used by Texas AgriLife Extension (Stone & Coppernoll, 2004); Michigan State University Extension Core Competency Initiative (2008); North Carolina Cooperative Extension (n.d) similarly identified Core Competencies; and the National 4 H compe tency model for 4 H (4 H Professional Research, Knowledge, and Competencie s) referred to as 4HPRKC (Garst et al., 2007). Ghimire and Martin (2011) proposed the Professional Competency Development Model for Extension Educators in the North Central Region o f the United States. The number of competencies varies between models from as few as eleven identified in the Core Competencies for Cooperative Extension System that was developed by the Personnel and Organizational Development Committee (PODC) of the Ext ension Committee on Organization and Policy (ECOP) (Maddy, Niemann, Lindquist, Bateman, 2002) to ov er 200 in 4HPRKC. It therefore becomes necessary for each Extension system to identify the core competencies relevant to its situation. The Core Competenc ies for Cooperative Extension System Model was developed by the Personnel and Organizational Development Committee (PODC) of the Extension Committee on Organization and Policy (ECOP) . The PODC conducted a study of extension systems in the United States to assess how core competencies were utilized in the professional development of extension faculty and staff and identified key components of successful programs. Based on their findings t he committee proposed eleven core competency areas ( see Table 2 1) ex tension employees should possess to anticipate and deliver quality educational programs of relevance to their audiences: community and social action processes; diversity/ pluralism/ multiculturalism; educational programming; engagement; information and del ivery; interpersonal

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48 relations; knowledge of organization; leadership; organizational management; professionalism; and subject matter (Maddy, et al. 2002). YES! (You, Extension and Success) is the m odel used by Texas AgriLife Extension . According to Sto ne and Coppernoll (2004) , the competency model is one of the f ive main components of YES! Six broad competency areas are represented in this model as necessary for effective job performance : subject matter expertise; organizational effectiveness; develop a nd involve others; communications; action orientation; and personal effectiveness ( see Table 2 2) . M SUE Core Competency Initiative is a competency model which was developed and refined over a period of thirteen years through a series of employee self asses sments (Vandenberg & Foerster, 2008). The MSUE model identifies ten core competencies that are needed by all extension professionals within the system to achieve exemplary performance. These are communication skills; diversity and multiculturalism; educa tional and information technology; evaluation, applied research, and scholarship; external linkages; facilitative leadership; marketing and quality services; professionalism and career development; program planning and development; and progra m implementati on and delivery ( see Table 2 3) . The competencies along with related sub competencies, indicators of competency, learning activities, and key resources or websites for competency development are all posted on the MSUE portal for easy access. Rodgers, Hi llaker, Haas, and Peters (2012) conducted a study on assessing and sub competencies formed the basis of the study. The findings revealed the level of

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49 proficiency of the fac ulty in evaluation varied with job classification with extension specialists being most proficient/ competent in all areas. The researchers recommended further evaluation training for faculty to increase organizational capacity at all levels. North Carol ina Cooperative Extension (NCCE) established a Blue Ribbon Commission (BRC) that identified seven core competencies applicable to all professionals within the organization . The competency areas of the NCCE Core Competency Model are: knowledge of the organ ization; technical subject matter expertise; programming; professionalism; communications; human relations; and leadership ( see Table 2 4) . There are sub competencies and proficiencies under each that vary depending on the job group (agents, specialists, administrators, support staff, program assistants , and volunteers) (Liles & Mustian, 2004). Lakai (2010) conducted a study of 274 extension agents in North Carolina to determine their level of competency on the seven core competency areas identified by t he BRC and new competencies needed for effective job performance. Proficiency was measured using a five point Likert scale. Respondents were most proficient in technical /s ubject matter expertise, followed by human relations, programming, knowledge of th e organization, communications, leadership, and professionalism. Emotional Intelligence was widely identified as a new competency that is necessary for effective job performance. Priority training areas identified were in the competency areas of stress m anagement, extension program evaluation, extension program marketing, and conflict resolution (Lakai, 2010). Ladewig and Rohs (1999) conducted a M anagerial A ssessment of P roficiency (MAP) competency study of extension p rofessionals i n s outheastern U.S. Ladewig and

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50 Rohs (1999) indicated Cooperative Extension Directors of the southern region of the United States realized extension systems were being impacted by a number of new and potential factors that c ould have serious implications on the system. The d irectors formed the Southern Extension Leadership Development (SELD) team, a virtual organization that operates without regard for boundary lines. SELD participants were assessed on 12 competencies that fell into four major areas ( see Table 2 5 ), using th e MAP (Lade wig & Rohs, 1999). Almost 900 e xtension professionals, at various levels within the organization deans, district directors, county agents, etc. from 13 Southern States and Delaware participated in the study (Ladewig & Rohs, 1999). When the extension professionals were compared to the 62,000 managers from various organizations in the MAP database, their overall score was in the 54 th percentile. Ladewig and Rohs (1999) indicated that as a group the competencies where extension demonstrated t he most strength with scores ranging between 56 to 62% were planning and scheduling work; identifying and solving problems; making decisions, weighing risks; giving clear information; and training, coaching, and delegating. Ladewig and Rohs (1999) were of the view that these competencies are necessary for the performance of everyday duties of planning an d implementing programs and would become even more critical as the number of staff continues to decline. Extension participant scores were at average or ba rely above average (50 53%) for competencies that are considered crucial for effective performance at an individual level. These competencies related to goal setting, providing clients with timely unbiased information, time management, and prioritizing. Ladewig and Rohs (1999) recommended extension professionals performing below standard in these areas

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51 should be put on a path of corrective measures to improve job performance. Thinking clearly and analytically (42%) and listening and organizing (48%) we re the weakest competency areas for the study participants. Extension professionals must be able to filter and analyze information and present it to clients in a useable form and demonstrate effective listening skills (Ladewig & Rohs, 1999). A similar s tudy of Virginia Cooperative Extension (VCE) professionals was conducted by Gibson and Brown (2003) that showed a lot of similarity to the MAP study of Ladewig and Rohs (1999). VCE professionals demonstrated strengths in the five competency areas where th e SELD participants were strong , with scores ranging from the 59 th to 68 th percentile. In the competency areas where SELD participants scored at average or just above average, the VCE participants were above average to strong with scores ranging from 51 st to 62 nd percentile. VCE also scored below average in the same areas as the SELD participants (Gibson & Brown, 2003). The consistency in these results indicates priority must be given to developing professional development opportunities that will teach ext ension professionals how to increase their analytical, communication, and organizational skills. Cooper and Graham (2001) conducted a study to determine the competencies needed to be successful county agents and supervisors in Arkansas. Fifty seven core c ompetencies were identified that were further categorized to seven competency areas by a panel of experts: program planning, implementation and evaluation; public relations; personal and professional development; faculty/staff relations; personal skills; m anagement responsibility; and work habits. Agents and supervisors showed minimal difference in the perceived level of importance of competencies for program planning,

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52 implementation and evaluation; public relations; personal and professional development. The study revealed that competencies related to character traits were more common, particularly faculty/staff relations (Cooper & Graham, 2001). Ennis (2008) considered team collaboration an important competency that can lead to organizational success in light of technological advances and competition on a global level. Ghimire and Martin (2011) conducted a study of 441 randomly selected extension educators in the North Central Region of the United States. Based on their findings a professional competency development model was proposed that can be used program development, teaching and learning methods, delivery strategies, and 7). These competency areas are consistent with those identified in earlier research conducted in the 1920s and by ECOP as necessary to plan and implement quality educational programs (Ghimire & Martin, 2011). There were a total of 42 competencies assoc iated with the four competency areas. The competency model presented should be useful in advancing the Sub competencies in each of th e four competency areas are separated according to when it is best taught. The three opportunities for learning are in graduate program, on the job training, or in service program. These items are vi sually presented in the model ( see Figure 2 1) . The mo del requires that systematic analysis, planning, application, and feedback by extension

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53 educators be done in all competency areas. The box at the bottom left hand corner lists the additional competencies that extension educators should possess prior to em ployment in the profession. The authors recommended that the model be flexible and adjusted to meet the needs of each extension system in the region based on feedback received from their extension educators. The model provides guidelines for determining professional development needs of extension professionals and can be used by extension systems on a local, regional or national level. It is also useful in designing competency courses at the undergraduate and graduate level, on the job training, and in s ervice training. The authors also suggested that the model can be used to develop Or ganizational training priorities can also be determined from the model. This model opens the door for researchers to conduct further study to determine whether the places identified as the best for extension educators to learn each competency are appropri ate (Ghimire & Martin, 2011). International Competency Studies Related to Extension Competencies in the Caribbean Harder, Ganpat, Strong, and Lindner (2012) conducted a census study ( N = 35 ) of extension officers in Belize to evaluate competencies relat ed to extension proficiency of competencies, then identified training needs using a mean weighted rogram

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54 areas. The teaching methods competency was identified as a strong point; however, proficiency was lacking in program planning and evaluation (Harder et al., 2012). stakehold ers in program planning, developing a program of work, using quantitative and developing recommendations for future programming based on findings of my t al., 2012, p. 75). The team recommended the adoption of strategies commonly utilized by other extension systems to strengthen the Belizean Extension System. Recommended strategies included: stakeholder involvement in program planning; developing a year ly plan of work to address problems of significance; and measuring and collecting quantifiable data to show program impact (Harder et al., 2012). Another component of the study of the Belizean Extension Officers examined their technological preferences and the effects of demographics on their preferences for use of technology in programming (Strong, Ganpat, Harder, & Lindner, 2012). The findings showed that officers used technology an average of twice per week. The officers indicated it increased efficien cy in time taken to accomplish tasks and volume of work done. The results reflected that the officers tended to utilize technology more for personal knowledge than for work related activities. Gender, age and work experience were not of significance in t echnological preference. However, the results showed officers with higher qualifications utilized technology more in program delivery (Strong et al., 2012). The team recommended officers be given professional development training in utilization of availa ble technology in programming efforts, with the anticipated benefit

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55 of farmers adopting technology to improve various aspects of the value chain (Strong et (2009) a nalysis of extension officers being able to use technology to conduct programs. Harder, Ganpat, Moore, Strong, and Lindner (2013) conducted another study of extension officers in three Caribbean countries: Belize, Grenada, and St. Lucia. The purpose of th e study was to identify the competencies for which professional development is needed for extension officers in these countries in the area of extension programming. The population of the study was extension officers attending in service training in the r egion in 2011. A total of 119 officers participated in the study. The perception on 38 programming competency statements on importance and proficiency. The findings showed that t here was a wide variation in the competencies with the highest self perceived levels of proficiency and highest levels of self perceived importance. Conducting individual farm visits received a high self perceived level of proficiency and importance acros s all three countries. The other four areas of highest self perceived proficiency were: conducting field days; providing an alternate explanation or example when clientele are confused; motivating clients to participate in programs; and identifying target (groups) audiences for my programs. Much diversity also existed with regards to the lowest self perceived levels of proficiency by country. Conducting nominal group techniques to identify community needs was common to all three countries. The other lo west competency items for the overall group were: Using quantitative evaluation methods (e.g. number based surveys, tests, reports) to measure the effectiveness of my programs; teaching with slides; using

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56 rating procedures for prioritizing issues identifie d during a needs assessment; and using qualitative evaluation methods (e.g. interviews, focus groups, observations) to measure the effectiveness of my programs. Nine competency items were identified as the highest self perceived importance with conducting individual farm visits common to all countries and the overall group. The other competency items rated highest for the overall group were: conducting field days; developing a program of work; providing an alternate explanation or example when clientele ar e confused; and responding well to difficult questions from clientele. Using rating procedures for prioritizing issues identified during a needs assessment and conducting nominal group techniques to identify common needs were identified as the lowest perce ived level of importance by all three countries and consequently the overall group. Lecturing; teaching with slides; and using ranking procedures for prioritizing issues identified during a needs assessment were among the lowest self perceived importance for the overall group. Mean weighted discrepancy scores were used to determine the highest priority areas where training is needed for each country and the overall group. Of the top five priority needs for each country, only Belize and Grenada had a compe tency item in common using quantitative evaluation methods (e.g. number based surveys, tests, reports) to measure the effectiveness of my programs. This was also a priority for the overall group. Other priority areas for Belize were: involving stakehol ders in program planning; developing a program of work; conducting result demonstrations; and developing recommendations for future programming based on finding of my evaluation. The latter two were also identified as priority training areas for the overa ll group.

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57 Teaching with slide; using qualitative evaluation methods (e.g. interviews, focus groups, observations) to measure the effectiveness of my programs; identifying necessary resources (e.g. money, time, materials,) for my programs; and establishing and managing demonstration plots (also for overall group) rounded off the top five priority training needs for Grenada. Promoting linkages between producers and processors; clearly stating the intended outcomes of programs; developing a calendar of activ ities to guide my annual program of work; providing an alternative explanation or example when clientele are confused; and determining what content is needed to achieve intended program outcomes were a priority for St. Lucia (Harder et al., 2013). Extensio n Competency Studies from Africa Adesiji (2006) indicated village extension agents in Nigeria were employed based on subject matter and needed competency training in the extension education process. evelopment learning, and social interaction processes, and they must become knowledgeable about the competencies needed by village extension agents of the Osun State Agricultur al Development Programme in Nigeria. A random sample of 60 village extension agents (VEAs) and three zonal extension officers (ZEOs) was selected with 100% response rate. The eight competency areas examined were: extension organization and administration ; p rogram planning and development; communication; research methodology; evaluation; human development; social system; and teaching. The VEAs considered all of the competencies important to effective job performance, but indicated they needed the most tra ining in th e areas of research methodology; teaching; and program planning and development. The ZEOs felt that training was needed in th e

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58 areas of research methodology; program planning and development; and human development. A recommendation was made th at training be prioritized for the areas where both V EAs and ZEOs thought training was needed (Adesiji, 2006). In Eastern Uganda, frontline extension officers lack the knowledge needed in the area of integrated pest management (IPM) and that hinders effect ively disseminating such information to farmers (Erbaugh, Kibwika, & Donnermeyer, 2006). Erbaugh et al. (2006) felt competency and credibility in this area could be improved by providing IPM training to agents prior to program delivery. They conducted a study to assess extension agent knowledge and training needs to improve integrated pest management (IPM) dissemination in Uganda. A survey instrument with 20 pest management competencies was administered to 82 extension agents in Eastern Uganda. The agen ts considered all of the 20 competencies to be very important. The team recommended based on their findings that a pre training needs assessment be conducted to determine the level of knowledge of agents and what competency areas they considered to be imp ortant. The results of such a survey could be used divide agents based on the ir level of knowledge to provide training at the appropriate level of difficulty (Erbaugh, et al., 2006). This study implies that although a competency area for which training is needed is identified consideration should be given to develop appropriate professional Competency Studies from the Middle East Karbasioun, Mulder, and Biemans (2007) took a different a pproach to determining the competency profile of agricultural extension instructors (AEIs). They conducted a study of farmers (27 interviews and 102 surveys) in 17 townships in Esfahan, Iran who had participated in trainings offered by AEIs to gain their perspective

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59 of the competencies needed by AEIs to effectively perform their duties. A combination of interviews of Competence of the AEIs was one of the factors on which data was r the competency profile should be differentiated according to the heterogeneity in the needs of the target group, or whether it could be sufficient to use one comprehensive (Karbasioun et al. , 2007, p. 79 80). The results of the Karb asioun et al. (2007) study indicated farmers rated most of communication and listening skills were also considered adequate. The farmers st course follow up skills were weak and also expressed dissatisfaction with the appropriateness of the instructional methods utilized to teach the courses. Karbasioun et al. (2007) concluded the AEIs were competent in the level of practical and technical knowledge and skills required to teach the courses offered. However, AEIs needed competency development in methods of stimulating farmers, instructional techniques and evaluation methods. Karbasioun et al. (2007) concluded it is possible to have a broad competency profile; however, some flexibility is needed based on learning motives and the demographics of the farmers, such as internal differentiation in courses should be incl uded in the competency profile because various relationships and differences were found in this study regarding course characteristics and competencies of instructors (Karbasioun et al., 2007, p.87). Javed Khan, Lodhi, Ashraf, and Ali Khan (2007) conduct ed a study of the technical competencies needed by agricultural (extension) officers in Punjab, Pakistan.

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60 The extension system in Punjab was considered to be weak and extension personnel were not competent in performing their duties ( Javed Khan et al , 200 7). Javed Khan et al. (2007) cited Ahmed (1992) as observing extension officers being unable to communicate with farmers and their performances were less than desirable due to lack of training. The reason given for the lack of competency was extension no t being able to keep up with the rapid changes in technology, globalization, and trade liberalization. Thus, the areas where agricultural officers need training must be identified in order to develop and conduct adequate trainings to address competency sh ortfalls. Al Zahrani (1992) conducted a study to determine the competencies needed by extension workers in the Southern Province of Saudi Arabia. The competency areas of interest were: extension philosophy, organization and administration; teaching and le arning process; human development and social knowledge; communication; program planning and development; and research and evaluation. A census was taken of the 114 extension workers in the Southern Province of Saudi Arabia utilizing a questionnaire that a sked each respondent to rate the importance of each competency item on a five point Likert scale. Additional training was identified as needed in all competency areas. However, research and evaluation; teaching and learning process; and communication we re identified as the priority areas. In the extension philosophy, organization and administration competency area training needs were identified for understanding the relationship between extension and other organizations; knowledge of the organizational structure; and knowledge and understanding of extension policies. Much training was identified as needed in the teaching and learning process competency area

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61 for the following competency items: Ability to motivate farmers; knowledge of problem solving app roach in extension; and understanding the principles of teaching and learning (Al Zahrani,1992). Much training was also needed for three competency statements in the area of human development and social knowledge: understanding the influence of mass commun ication on society; knowledge of the stages of the adoption process; and knowledge of the different kinds of adopters in the community. The ability to develop short and long term programs in extension; ability to use the data of census and other resources ; and skill and ability to develop a plan of action were competency statements for which extension workers perceived they needed much training in the program planning and development competency area. The top three competency statements in the research and evaluation competency area where much additional training was needed were: ability to evaluate extension programs; understanding research terminology; and knowledge of the research in extension. In the competency area of communication much training was n eeded in understanding the basic principles of communication; ability and skills to give demonstration; and skills and ability to use visual aids (Al Zahrani,1992). Javed Khan et al. (2007) conducted a study of subject matter competence which is only one a rea of agent competence, but worth noting to show competency studies are being done in the field on single or multiple competency area(s). A random sample of 181 agricultural officers was made from a population of 341. A survey instrument was developed an d distributed with 14 technical competencies related to agronomic practices. The officers were asked to rate the competencies they possessed and the

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62 importance of those competencies to their job performance. A discrepancy value between the two was calcul ated and the differences used to determine the competencies where training was needed. The study revealed that training was needed in all 14 agronomic practice areas with the most important all related to minor crops: the ability to describe the agronomic practices of minor crops; the ability to advise about plant protection of minor crops; and the ability to guide farmers about seed rate of minor crops (Javed Khan et al., 2007). Relationship Between Demographic Characteristics and Competencies Several com petency studies examined the relationship between demographic characteristics and competency levels. The demographic characte ristics selected for this study: gender, age , education, and job experience are consistent with those of previous studies conducte d by Khan, Nawab, Ali, Habib, Khan, Ahmad, ... Haq (2008), Lakai (2010), and Omoregbee and Ajayi (2009). Lakai (2010) showed competency level s for North Carolina Extension agents tend to increase with age and years of experience, but not with other demogr aphic characteristics. Khan et al. (2008), in their study of agriculture officers in the North West Frontier Province ( NWFP ) , Pakistan found there were no significant differences across the board in the competencies studied according to age and job experi ence; however, the level of proficiency in the various competencies had a significance difference with the level of education. In the aforementioned study by Al Zahrani (1992), there was a negative correlation between age of the extension workers and the need for additional training in extension philosophy, organization, and administration. On the other hand, there was a positive correlation between the age of the extension workers and the need for

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63 additional training in the competency areas of: communic ation; research and evaluation; program planning; and teaching and learning process. The relationship between demographic characteristics of extension officers in CARICOM and its Associate Member States and their competency levels can be used to determine how to tailor training opportunities for specific groups. Assessment of the Competency Studies Presented A summary of the seven competency models described for extension agents in the Unite d States is presented in Table 2 6 . The most common competencies were: communication skills; professionalism; program planning, development, and implementation; external linkages; and program evaluation. The competency studies conducted in Belize; the overall group study of Belize, Grenada, and St. Lucia (BGSL); Nigeri a; Saudi Arabia; and Iran are consistent with competency items from individual institution s or multiple U.S. competency models (see Table 2 7) . Evaluation methods appear to be a competency where professional development is needed regardless of country of study. It was identified in Nigeria, Belize, BGSL, Iran, and included in the competency models of the state extension systems within the U.S. The studies matter expertise. The competenc y study conducted by Karbasioun et al. (2007) in Iran sought the clientele/farmer perspective of the competencies of the AEIs. It is important to note that from their viewpoint evaluation and instructional techniques were competency areas in which the AEIs needed further training. This study should indicate to extension professionals that their skills are being scrutinized by their clientele and every effort

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64 should be made to sharpen their skills in all competency areas, so they can be deeme d competent in the eyes of their clientele. The Pakistani competenc y study presented by Javed Khan et al. (2007) focused on subject matter competencies. The inability to keep up technology, globalization, and trade liberalization were identified as limiti ng factors; thus, a more comprehensive competency study is needed to fully assess competence of the agriculture officers in all core competency areas. Competency studies related to only subject matter expertise are more relevant to new technologies where an assessment is needed to determine specific areas in which training is needed to bring extension personnel up to par. There was quite a variation in the correlation of demographics and proficiency in the competency areas being studied by the different re searchers. The level of education was not of significance in the Lakai (2010) study; whereas it did play a role in the level of competency in the study conducted by Rodgers et al . (2012) and Strong et al. (2012). Khan et al. (2007) noted proficiency ten d s to increase with the level of education and this was consiste nt with the findings of Strong et al. (2012) that showed the level of competence in the use of technology increased with the level of qualifications. Al Zahrani (1992) found older , more exper ienced agents were more proficient in the competency area of knowledge of administration and the organization. However, as age increased the need for training increased. Possible contributing factors in the variability of the demographics with level of p roficiency in a competency area are: the level of preparation in extension methodology individuals receive during their tertiary education before entering the field, and subsequent on the job training; the willingness to adopt new technologies; and availab le resources.

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65 Based on the studies reviewed the competency areas that will be addressed by this study for extension in CARICOM and its Associate Member States are: professionalism and professional development ; extension organization and administration; pro gram planning and development; extension teaching tools and methods ; evaluation of extension programs ; information and communication technologies ; subject matter expertise; and external linkages. This study will determine the level of competence of extensi on officers in CARICOM and identify training needs based on their perception of importance of each competence; perceived level of knowledge; and perceived level of application . With the provision of adequate resources such as funding, specialists, technol ogy, etc., a sustainable professional development program can be implemented in the region. This will increase productivity and improve the livelihoods of clientele served and portray a positive image of extension as highly effective in the services deliv ered. The potential long term impacts are positive economic growth in the agriculture sector throughout CARICOM and changes to CARICOM Extension to reflect the changing needs of clientele in the region. Chapter Summary The literature presented shows ext ension systems worldwide are now utilizing competencies as a means of identifying the areas in which extension personnel excel and areas for which further professional development is needed. Knowing the level of proficiency of extension professionals allo ws each organization to develop trainings targeted to areas of weakness, either through on the job or formal training, or for making other personnel decisions. Multiple competency models exist and each extension system should assess the competencies neede d based on the duties

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66 performed by extension professionals to build a model tailored to its needs. Based on the information presented certain core competencies are required by all irrespective of program area. Research related to competency in extension in the Caribbean region is limited. With this study focusing on examining competencies and professional development needs throughout CARICOM, it will hopefully bring the idea of using competency standards to raise performance to the forefront. It could also be the catalyst needed to re focus and revive regional training efforts through CAEP Net to produce high performing extension officers.

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67 Table 2 1 . Core Competencies of the Cooperative Extension System Competency Description Community and Social Actio n Processes The ability to identify and monitor variables and issues important to community vitality (e.g., demographics, economics, human resources, environmental, etc.), and the ability to use and apply these variables to program prioritization, planning , and delivery. Diversity/Pluralism/Multiculturalism The awareness, commitment, and ability to different cultural perceptions, assumptions, norms, beliefs, and values. Educational Programming The ability to plan, design, implement, evaluate and market extension programs to effect positive change in lives of clientele served. Engagement An understanding of the history, philosophy, and contemporary nature of extension. Information and Education Delivery Effective verbal and written communication; application of technology, and using appropriate delivery methods to effect behavior change in clientele. Interpersonal Relations The ability to establish successful relationships with diverse individuals an d groups to create partnerships, networks and dynamic human systems. Knowledge of Organization An understanding of the history, philosophy, and contemporary nature of extension. Leadership Ability to positively influence a wide range of diverse ind ividuals and groups Organization Management The ability to establish structure, organize processes, develop and monitor resources, and effectively and efficiently lead change to obtain educational outcomes.

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68 Table 2 1. Continued Competency Description Professionalism The demonstration of behaviors that reflect high levels of performance, a strong work ethic, and a commitment to continuing education and to the mission, vision, and goals of extension. Subject Matter Mastery of a scientific discipline, a research body of knowledge, or a technical proficiency that enhances individual and organizational effectiveness. Note. Adapted from The Core Competencies of the Cooperative Extension System by Maddy et al., 2002. Table 2 2. YES! (You, Extension a nd Success) Model Texas AgriLife Extension Competency Description Subject Matter Expertise The knowledge and skills the agent must possess for his / her area of responsibility. Also covered in this area are ction, solving Organizational Effectiveness Achieving the mission of Extension through program development, implementation and evaluation, establishing linkages and accountability. Develop and Involve Others M aintaining healthy relationships with other faculty and outside partners to effectively meet clientele needs. Support provided to other faculty, teamwork, group facilitation skills, and volunteer management. Communications Effective oral and written c ommunication at all levels. Action Orientation planning for the future, and working conscientiously to achieve goals. Personal Effectiveness Being committed to the profession and balancing work a nd family life. Note Texas Cooperative Extension, The Texas A&M University System Competency Model

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69 Table 2 3. Michigan State University Extension (MSUE) Core Competency Initiative Model Competency Description Communication Skills The ability to convert technical information to suit target audiences using writing, speaking, or visual tools. Diversity and Multiculturalism In order for extension to excel, stay relevant and survive, faculty must build compete nce in issues related to diversity and multiculturalism. It requires extension educators to become more culturally competent to facilitate ease of working with diverse audiences. Educational and Information Technology Keep abreast of current technolog y and utilize them to develop educational materials that can reach a broad clientele base. Evaluation, Applied Research, and Scholarship Evaluate programs to document outcomes and impact to provide the necessary documentation and accountability require d by stakeholders, such as funding agencies and local government. Proper evaluation of programs can provide objective information that faculty can use to share their program successes. External Linkages MSUE is a partnership of local, state, and feder al governments with support and or collaboration with non governmental organizations, industry and others. Ability to understand the linkages and to communicate effectively with all entities. Facilitative Leadership Group facilitation skills are neces sary for program enhancement as most extension work is done in group settings. The ability to engage groups by effectively facilitating discussions will allow for engaging communities in problem solving exercises. Marketing and Quality Service Exten sion continually strives to meet the educational needs of its target audiences. The packaging and promotion of quality educational experiences that are timely and relevant are necessary for long term success. Professionalism and Career Development Ext ension educators must maintain a high code of ethics. Educators must seek opportunities for continued to date, sensitive to interpersonal and community relations and reliable, ethical educational lea

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70 Table 2 3. Continued Program Planning and Development Constant use of needs assessment and priority setting through involvement of stakeholders, target audiences and collaborators in program planning. Ability to develop creative research based pro grams and identify, acquire and manage resources needed for program delivery. Program Implementation and Delivery Involving learning in all facets of the learning process is paramount to successful program implementation. The content delivered should be research based utilizing local, university, and external expertise to provide participatory learning experiences suitable to adult audiences, and establishing and maintaining a volunteer base. The implementation of evaluation methods to allow for conti nued improvement in program delivery is necessary for this competency area. Note . Adapted from Core 2008. Table 2 4. C ore Competencies for North Carolina Cooperative Extension Competency Descripti on Knowledge of the Organization Having a general understanding of the history, philosophy, vision and mission of extension. Technical Subject Matter Expertise Mastery of relevant area of technical expertise. Programming The ability to plan, imple ment and evaluate extension programs to meet the needs of extension clientele. Professionalism Similar to the Professionalism and Career Development competency of MSUE. Communications Human Relations The ability to interact with diverse audiences, developing effective linkages with stakeholders. Leadership The ability to positively influence diverse audiences and groups. Note . Adapted from Core Competencies: A systems Approach for Training and O rganizat Liles & Musta in, 2004 .

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71 Table 2 5. Twelve Key Competencies of MAP* Administrative (Managing your job) Time management Goal setting Work planning and scheduling Communication (Relating to others) Listening and organizing Giving clear information Getting unbiased information Supervision (Building the team) Training, coaching and delegating Performance and people appraisals Disciplining and counseling Cognitive (Thinking clearly) Identifying an d solving problems Making decisions, weighing risks Thinking clearly and analytically Note. *MAP was developed by Training House, Inc., Princeton, New Jersey . Adapted Southern Extension Leadership Development: Leadership Developme nt for a Lear .

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72 Table 2 6 . Compa rison of U.S. Competency Models PDOC YES MSUE NCCE PCDM MAP Arkansas Subject Matter Subject Matter Expertise Education & Information Technology Technical & Subject Matter Expertise Knowledge of the Organization Organizational Effectiveness Knowledge of the Organization Educational Programming Program Planning & Development Programming Program Development/ Needs Assessment Program Planning & Implementation Engagement /Interpersonal Rela tions Develop and Involve Others External Linkages Human Relations Faculty & Staff Relations Information & Education Delivery Communications Action Orientation Communication Skills Communication Communication Public Relations Professionalism Persona l Effectiveness Professionalis m & Career Development Professionalism Personal and Professional Development / Work Habits Diversity, Multiculturalism, Pluralism Diversity & Multiculturalism Evaluation, Applied Research & Scholarship Evaluation M ethod Evaluation Leadership Facilitative Leadership Leadership

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73 Table 2 6. Continued PDOC YES MSUE NCCE PCDM MAP Arkansas Marketing & Quality Service Program Implementation & Delivery Teaching & Learning Delivery Strategies Organ ization al Management Administrative Community & Social Action Processes Supervision Management Responsibility Cognitive

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74 Table 2 7. Comparison of Competency Stud ies in Other Parts of the World Caribbean (Belize) Belize, Gren ada & St. Lucia (Group) Nigeria Saudi Arabia Iran Pakistan Uganda Program Planning Program Planning & Development Program planning and development Subject Matter based on 14 Agronomic Competencies Subject Matter based on 20 Pest Management Competenc ies Teaching Methods Establishing and managing demonstration plots Teaching and learning process Program Evaluation Using quantitative evaluation methods Evaluation Evaluation Evaluation & Post follow up skills Involving Stakeholders Linkages betw een producers and processors Conduct Results Demonstrations Conducting results demonstrations Research Methodology Research Recommendations for future Programs Recommendations for future programs Technology Extension Organization & Administration Extension philosophy, organization, and administration Communication Communication

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75 Table 2 7. Continued Caribbean (Belize) Belize, Grenada & St. Lucia (Group) Nigeria Saudi Arabia Iran Pakistan Uganda Human Development Hum an development and social knowledge Social System Teaching Appropriateness of Instructional Methods Subject Matter

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76 Figure 2 1 . Professional Competency Development Model Reproduced with permission of Ghimire & Martin, 2 011 .

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7 7 CHAPTER 3 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY Overview of Methodology A list of competencies were identified and placed in a survey instrument based on the literature review of common competencies for extension officers in various parts of the world. The compe tency list was reviewed by four senior level extension personnel and five extension officers from the region and experts in the field. Items were added or removed from the list based on feedback received (Olsen, 1984). This is a n ex post facto quantitativ e stud y that used descriptive and inferential statistics. The population for this study was Extension officers in 13 CARICOM Member States and the five Associate Member Territories . A census was conducted of all extension officers. The frame for this stu dy was obtained from the extension division within the Ministry of Agriculture or comparable government unit of each country. Data was collected using a self administered questionnaire following the Dillman, Smyth, and Christian (2009) Tailored Design Met hod. This chapter will provide a description of the research methodology. It will cover population and sampling, instrumentation, validity and reliability, data collection, and data analysis. Population and Sampling The population for this study wa s exte nsion officers in 13 of the 15 CARICOM Member States (Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and Trinidad and Tobago) and five Associat e Member Territories (Anguilla, Bermuda, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, and Turks and Caicos). This essentially encompasses all the English speaking islands of the Caribbean and

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78 eliminates the French (including Haiti a member of CARICOM), Spani sh, and Dutch (including Suriname a member of CARICOM) speaking countries. These were omitted from the study because of the language barrier. The Bahamas, Grenada, Dominica, and Guyana were eventually omitted for failure to grant approval for participa tion in the study before the cut off deadline. Thus, eight CARICOM countries (Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and Trinidad and Tobago) and three Associate Member States (Angui lla, Cayman Islands, and Montserrat) participated in the study. Extension administrators in Tobago requested Tobago be counted as a separate country for purpose of the study as its extension system is run as a separate entity from Trinidad by the Tobago H ouse of Assembly. Seepersad and Ganpat (2008) in their analysis of Agricultural Extension in Trinidad and Tobago used the same reasoning for presenting a separate analysis of Tobago Extension. Therefore, the data will represent 12 countries. Due to the s mall number of extension officers in each country a census was attempted of a ll officers in the population ( N = 400 ); thus, sampling procedures were not utilized (Cantwell, 2008) . Initial contact was made with the Inter American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA) Trinidad and Tobago O ffice , in St. Augustine, Trinidad to obtain a list of contacts within each Ministry of Agriculture that would be able to grant permission or facilitate the approval process to conduct the study . A letter was emai led to the each individual to obtain their support of the study and their promotion and encouragement of their staff to complete and return the instrument once it is received. In some instances numerous follow up calls were made and emails were re sent be fore approval for participation in the study could be obtained. The frame for this study was

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79 obtained from the extension division within the Ministry of Agriculture or equivalent agency of each country. Instrumentation The survey instrument was a hybrid of several instruments with most of the competencies modeled after the instrument used by Awang (1992) to assess the training needs of extension officers in Malaysia. Several items were also incorporated from survey instrument used by Harder (2007) to de termine the training needs of new extension agents in Florida and the instrument used by Harder et al. (2013) to assess perceived programming competencies in selected Caribbean countries. The instrument contained two sections (a) eight core competencies (Professionalism and Professional Development; Extension Organization and Administration; Program Planning and Development; Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods; Evaluation of Extension Programs; Information and Communication Tech nologies; Subject Matter Expertise; and External Linkages ) compiled from studies cited herein; and (b) demographic characteristics (gender, age, education, and job experience). Gender was measured as male or female; age in years; education as the highest level attained; and job experience as the number of years working in extension. The Borich (1980) model of needs assessment was used to measure given a five point scale ( 1 = Very Low Importance/Knowledge/Application ; 2 = Low Importance/Knowledge/Application ; 3 = Average Importance/Knowledge/Application ; 4 = High Importance/Knowledge/Application ; and 5 = Very High Importance/Knowledge/Application ) to rate their perceptions of importance, knowledge,

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80 and application of each competency. The Borich model (1980) is frequently used by extension social scientists to determine competencies and professional development needs (Alibaygi & Zarafshani, 2008; Erbaugh, Kibwika, & Donnerme yer, 2007; Harder et al., 2013; Waters & Haskell, 1999). The mean values of the competency areas were interpreted with a scale similar to the one used by Melak and Negatu (2012), (see Table 3 1). Validity and Reliability According to Markus, Cooper Thomas , and Allpress (2005) there is usually a was provided on the survey instrument to provide a frame of reference to help keep respondents consistent to enhance content and face validity. The initial draft of the questionnaire was reviewed by a panel of experts from the University of Florida and faculty from the University of the West Indies , St. Augustine Campus; and senior level extension staff withi n the Ministry of Agriculture of five countries (Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Jamaica, St. Kitts and Nevis, and St. Lucia) to confirm content and face validity. The instrument was revised based on their input and pilot tested with 10 former CARICOM exte nsion officers now residing outside and within alpha was used to measure the reliability coefficient or the internal consistency of the items in the instrument ( Trobia, 200 (see Table 3 2) alpha above .80 (range of 0 to 1) indicates the items in the scale are coherent and reliable (Trobia, 2008). This signifies the items in each competency area are correlated

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81 to each other. Therefore, no additional adjustments were made to the survey instrument. alculated for CARICOM were all above .80 for each competency area for importance, knowledge and application (see Table 3 3 ). In order to limit the threat of selection to internal validity each extension department was asked to provide access to their front line extension officers to participate in the study. This was to ensure that all participants completing the instrument were in regular contact with clientele conducting educational activities, field visits, or other related tasks. The threat of instrum entation to internal validity was limited by making an Adobe Acrobat® pdf version of the questionnaire available to the two countries that requested the instrument by email. The pdf version ensured the document was received in a format similar to those pr ovided a paper copy by the researcher. The operational definitions for the study were clearly outlined in the introduction as a means of limiting threat caused by external validity. Data Collection Data were collected using a self administered questionnai re following th e Dillman et al. (2009) Tailored Design Method to reduce survey error that can be caused by . During the data collection phase the researcher customized the survey procedures to each country, a recommendation made by Dillman et al. (2009). Experts within CARICOM recommended to the researcher that the data be collected in person in order to reduce nonresponse error . Data collection took place from October 14 to December 6, 2013. The researcher visited Trinidad, Tobago, St. Vincent and The Grenadines, Barbados, St. Lucia, Antigua and Barbuda, Montserrat,

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82 Institutional Review Board (IRB) forms to e ach potential respondent to sign followed by the survey instrument for completion. Each country notified their extension officers of the pending survey and made arrangements for them to either all meet in one location or multiple district extension office s throughout the country. Officers from Barbados, St. Lucia, and St. Kitts and Nevis who were not on site at the time of the researchers visit completed the survey, scanned, and emailed it to the researcher. All of these countries with the exception of T rinidad provided access to all front line extension officers on duty started with a Ministry of Food Production (MFP) official who left the Ministry a few weeks before up plans made with another ministry staff or the researcher. A new contact was eventually made who tried to put things in place, but he was called to attend an unexpected, high level meeting at the Ministry. Hence, T rinidad provided a convenience sample of extension officers who were having additional surveys to the other officers. The researcher made a phone call and sent two additio nal email reminders to the Trinidad MFP contact which did not yield submission of additional surveys. During data collection Tobago requested that their data be analyzed separately from Trinidad since Tobago has its own local government administration and wanted the results to reflect what exists specifically to Tobago. Belize and Jamaica indicated their officers had access to the Internet and computers and requested a pdf version of the instrument be mailed prior to the s facilitating the data collection in Belize (Cayo District Extension Officer) and Jamaica (Director of TT&TI/RADA) were briefed on the

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83 procedures to follow: information on the purpose of the survey, review and signing of IRB form by each officer before gi ven the survey for completion; and placing the completed surveys in a sealed envelope to be delivered to the researcher in order to maintain anonymity. Each country did present the researcher with the completed instruments by districts in sealed envelopes . Due to the extremely high cost of travel and accommodations, limited funds, and the small number of officers in Bermuda (3), Cayman Islands (3), and Turks and Caicos (4) the researcher did not travel to these countries. Bermuda requested the instrument be mailed to the Director who would distribute to staff to complete, scan, and email to researcher. An email notice was sent to indicate the package was mailed and two weeks later another email was sent to see if the package was received. Another email r eminder was sent a week later along with a pdf version of the instrument. A final email reminder was sent indicating the deadline for the close of data collection one week before the deadline. Cayman Islands and Turks and Caicos received a pdf version of the instrument for distribution. Similar reminders were also sent to the administrators in these two countries. Response Rates Although officials in Turks and Caicos and Bermuda gave permission for their staff to participate in the study, no survey inst ruments were received. Thus, they were not part of the analysis. According to Dr. Mark Butler with the Turks and Caicos as we speak. We do have extension officers or ag ricultural officers. In this regard, a lot (personal communication, September, 2013). Dr. Frederick Ming, Director of the

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84 Department of Environmental Protection of Bermuda i dismantled the Department of Agriculture and Fisheries to create two new department: Environmental Protection (DEP) and Conservation Services (DCS). Consequently, parts of agriculture went to each of the departments hence no With the reorganization of the department, it is hoped to have a slightly larger but more 2013). During the data collection period Dr. Ming indicated the survey instrument had been forwarded to three members of staff with a percentage of their duties in extension for completion. Cayman Islands also gave permission for its officers to participate and only one individual completed the survey. Anguilla ( n = 4), Antigua and Barbuda (n = 5), Barbados (n = 10), and St. Vincent and the Grenadines (n = 15) each had a response rate of 100%. Trinidad had the lowest response rate (n = 90 or 7%). The data was weighted in order to normalize the data across countr ies ( see Table 3 4). Data Analysis It was necessary to weight the data in order to conduct the descriptive and inferential analyses due to the wide variation in the number of respondents from each country. According to Bethlehem (2008) weighting corrects for survey nonresponse to improve the accuracy of estimating the characteristics of a population. Bethlehem or under represented in the sample because of their differential respon 3). Each country was assigned a base weight of one because the study represents a census of all front line officers in the participating countries. Based on the information received from each country representative the total num ber of front line ex tension officers combined equaled 400. The response rate for each country was calculated by

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85 dividing the number of respondents in each country by the number of officers in the said country. T he nonresponse weight is the inverse of the estimated probability of responding (Hahs Vaughn, 2005). Nonresponse weight was calculated by dividing the base weight by the response rate of each country. The nonresponse weights account for the differences between the respondents and the non responden ts in the population. A new variable was created in Statistical Package for Social Sciences ( SPSS ) version 22 software called non response weight and the value calculated for each country was assigned to each respondent from that country. The non respons e rate for all of the respondents within the study was summed and the mean non response rate calculated. A second variable called relative or normalized response weig ht was created. The relative or normalized weight accounts for the non coverage. The rel ative non response weight was calculated by dividing the non response rate of each country by the mean weight of all countries combined. All data analysis was conducted by weighting the cases by relative non response weights. By using this technique to a nalyze the data , responses from countries with fewer respondents weight more and those with more respondents weight less (Hahs Vaughn, 2005), so that inference can be made to the entire population of front line officers in countries surveyed. Objective 1: perceived level of importance, knowledge, and applica tion for identified competency area . SPSS was used to analyze the data for this portion of the study using descriptive statistics. The cases were weighted by relative non re sponse weight as previously described to calculate the mean and standard deviation for each competency area by importance, knowledge, and application for all of CARICOM.

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86 Objective 2: Determine training needs for specific competencies based on gaps between perceptions of importance and knowledge and gaps between knowledge and application in identified competencies. The data was analyzed using descriptive statistics and the ranking procedure of the Borich (1980) needs assessment model and described by Edwards and Briers (1999) and used by Harder, Roberts, Stedman, Thoron, and Myers (2009). A perceived level of importance of each competence with their perceived knowledge of that compe tence. An application discrepancy score (ADS) was calculated using each his/her perceived application of that competence. The formulas were: Importance (I r ) Knowledge (K r ) = Knowledge D iscrepancy Score (KDS r ) Importance (I r ) Application (A r ) = Application Discrepancy Score (ADS r ) A weighted knowledge discrepancy score (KWDS) and a weighted application discrepancy score (AWDS) were determined for each respondent (r) by multiplying the d iscrepancy score for knowledge or for application by the overall mean importance for that competency . The formulas were: KDS r x Overall Mean Importance = KWDS ADSr x Overall Mean Importance = AWDS A sum total of all discrepancy scores were used to calcula te the knowledge mean weighted discrepancy score (KMWDS) and for the application mean weighted discrepancy score (AMWDS). The formulas were:

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87 These scores were then ranked to determine the professional development needs of Extension officers in CARICOM. Negative scores were interpreted to mean training was not a priority for that particular competency. Positi ve KMWDS or AMWDS means training is needed. This method of calculation of discrepancy scores to determine professional development needs is also consis tent with that used by Erbaugh et al. (2006). 2 .0 were considered to be priorities. In order t o ascertain which competency items had values AMWDS were calculated. Prior to calculating the formulas in Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) from Objective 3: Determine if differences exist ed perceptions of competency importance , knowledge, and application based on gender and level of ed ucation and relationships that existed for age and length of employment, for each competency area . New dependent variables were calculated for each competency area for importance, knowledge, and application. Thes e new variables were used to: (a ) run indep endent samples t tests to determine if differences exist ed between the independent variable gender (males and females) and each dependent variable; (b ) a One perception of importa nce, k nowledge or application was a function of the independent variable level of education importance, knowledge, or appli cation and the independent variable year born and years of experience . Post hoc procedures (Tukey, Scheffe, and Games Howell) were

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88 conducted to determine where differences exist ed among groups of variables. Calculations were weighted by relative nonres ponse weights. An alpha level of .05 was used in all the analyses. SPSS was used to analyze the data. d measure of ) online Effect Size Calculator. Becker (2000) provided the following interpretat d : 0.2 small 0.5 medium 0.8 large The effect size r was used as a measure for Pearson Product Moment Correlation. Ellis ( 2009 ) provided the following interpretation for r : .10 small .30 medium .50 large .70 very large Demographics T able 3 5 shows the demographic characteristics for CARICOM Extension officers. The population is predominantly male (69.3%, n = 150) and 30.7% females ( n = 67). St. Vincent and the Grenadines had the highest percentage of female officers (63%). The mean age in years is 35.78 with a standard deviation of 8.60. The ages ranged from 22 to 59 years old (see Figure 3 1) . Just over 70% of the extension officers in the region were 39 years old or younger. The age group of 50 59 years had the fewest officer s (8.3%). The highest mean age in years was for the officers in Montserrat and Barbados (45 years). Antigua and Barbuda was the only country where the extension officers hold a xtension n = 31) and Barbados (33%, n =

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89 2). Trinidad (84%, n = 41) St. Lucia (70%, n = 14), Belize (69%, n = 11), and St. Vincent and The Grenadines (67%, n = 6) had the next highest number of officers with a diploma. In terms of CARICOM, the majority of the officers hold a diploma or associate degree (58.6%, n n = 56). Secondary/high school graduates made up 6.7% ( n = 14) of the population; 5.4% ( n = 12) n = 6) a certificate and 0.5% ( n = 1) a doctoral degree, ( see Figure 3 2 ). The average length of employment was 9.87 years (see Figure 3 3). The officers were given the opportunity to indicate the program areas in which they worke d. Eight options were provided with the option for Other for listing of items that were not covered. The majority of the officers were primarily engaged in crop related work (89.9%, n = 195) followed by livestock (62.1%, n = 135). Ornamentals (31.1%, n = 67) and marketing (28.9%, n = 63) were the next highest program areas. Youth development accounted for 18% ( n = 39). Nutrition and forestry each accounted for 12.4% ( n = 27) of the officers conducting work in these program areas and fisheries the progr am area with the fewest number of officers at 1.5% ( n = 3). Just over 18% ( n = 39) of the officers indicated they were engaged in work in other program areas, such as food security and climate smart agriculture.

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90 Table 3 1. Scale for Interpreting the L evel of Competence in Each Competency Area f or Impor tance, Knowledge, a nd Application Means Level of Competence 0.00 1.49 extremely low importance, knowledge, application (no competence) 1.50 2.49 below average importance, knowledge, or application ( less than average competence) 2.50 3.49 average importance, knowledge, or application (average competence) 3.50 4.49 above average importance, knowledge, or application (above average competence) 4.50 5.00 extremely high importance, knowledge, or a pplication (very competent) Table 3 2. Competency Area Importance Knowledge Application Professionalism and Professional Development .81 .92 .92 Extension Organization and Administration .89 .83 .87 Program Pl anning and Development .95 .95 .94 Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods .89 .93 .94 Evaluation of Extension Programs .97 .95 .98 Information and Communication Technologies .84 .90 .94 Subject Matter Expertise .94 .92 .92 External Linkages .89 .93 .96 Table 3 3. Competency Area Importance Knowledge Application Professionalism and Professional Development .92 .94 .94 Extension Organization and Administration .91 .91 .89 Progr am Planning and Development .93 .93 .93 Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods .92 .93 .92 Evaluation of Extension Programs .96 .95 .95 Information and Communication Technologies .93 .92 .89 Subject Matter Expertise .94 .93 .93 External Linkages .91 .9 1 .91

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91 Table 3 4. Response Rates, Base Weights, Non response Weights and Relative Weights of the Population Country Officer Positions Respondents Response Rate Base Weights Non Response Weight Relative or Normalized Weight Anguilla 4 4 1.0 1 1.0 0 .54 Antigua and Barbuda 5 5 1.0 1 1.0 0.54 Barbados (Ext. Div. & BADMC) 10 10 1.0 1 1.0 0.54 Belize 40 (29 front line*) 25 0.86 1 1.16 0.63 Cayman Islands 3 1 0.33 1 3.03 1.65 Jamaica 242 (175 front line) 99 0.57 1 1.77 0.96 Montserrat 3 3 1.0 1 1.0 0.54 St. Kitts and Nevis 14 10 0.71 1 1.4 0.76 St. Lucia 34 23 0.68 1 1.48 0.81 St. Vincent and the Grenadines 24 (15 frontline) 15 1.0 1 1.0 0.54 Trinidad 90 6 0.07 1 14.99 8.17 Tobago 18 17 0.94 1 1.06 0.58 Total 400 218 Note. *Fr ontline Officers

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92 Table 3 5. Demo graphics of Extension Officers W ithin CARICOM Based on Relative Non Response Weights Demographic CARICOM % n Gender Male 69.3 150 Female 30.7 67 Age (Mean in years) 35.78 (SD= 8.60) 20 29 30.3 64 30 39 41.2 87 40 49 20.2 42 50 59 8.3 18 Educational Level Secondary/High School 6.7 14 20 29 3.1 30 39 3.5 40 49 11.9 50 59 15.8 Certificate 3 .0 6 20 29 4.7 30 39 1.2 40 49 7.1 50 59 0 Diploma/Associate Degree 58.6% 127 20 29 68.8 30 39 50.0 40 49 64.3 50 59 52.6 Bachelors 25.8% 56 20 29 14.1 30 39 40.7 40 49 14.3 50 59 21.1 Masters 5.4% 12 20 29 9.4 30 39 3.5 40 49 2.4 50 5 9 5.3

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93 Table 3 5. Continued Demographic CARICOM % n Ph.D. 0.5% 1 20 29 0.0 30 39 1.2 40 49 0.0 50 59 5.3 Years of Experience (Mean) 9.87 (SD = 8.32) Program Area 4 H Youth Development 18% 39 Crops 89.9% 195 Fisheries 1.5% 3 Forestry 12.4% 27 Ornamentals 31.1% 67 Livestock 62.1% 135 Marketing 28.9% 63 Nutrition (Human) 12.4% 27 Other 18.2% 38

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94 Figure 3 1 . Age distribution of Extension officers in CARICOM

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95 Figure 3 2 . Level of Education

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96 Figure 3 3 . Years of experience categories of Extension Officers in CARICOM

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97 CHAPTER 4 FINDINGS A comprehensive analysis of the data collected for the study wil l be presented in this chapt er. The purpose of this study wa s to develop a competency framework and determine professional development needs for extension officers in CARICOM and its Associate Member Territories. The objectives of the study were to: 1. Desc applica tion for identified competency areas . 2. Determine training needs for specific competencies based on gaps between perceptions of importance and knowledge and gaps between knowledge and application in identified competencies and competency areas . 3. competency importance, knowledge, and application based on gender and level of education and relationships that exi sted for age and length of employment, for each competency area. Findings Related to Objective 1: application for identified competencies Objective one describes extension officers importance, knowledge, and application of the identified competency areas. Extension officers in CARICOM perceived Extension Organization and Administration to be of extremely high importance ( M = 4.53, SD = .49 ) ( see Table 4 1). The remaining competencies were perceived to be of above average importance in the following order: Professionalism and Pr ofessional Development ( M = 4.43 , SD = .45 ); Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods ( M = 4.42, SD = .51 ); Subject Matter Expert ise ( M = 4.42, SD = .56 ); Program Planning and Development ( M = 4.25, SD = .57 ); Evaluation of Extension Programs ( M = 4.22, SD = .66 ); Information and Communication Technologies ( M = 4.19, SD = .76 ); and External Linkages ( M = 3.97, SD = .72 ).

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98 Extension o fficers perceived their knowledge to be above average in all eight competency areas ( see Table 4 2 ) . The ratings from highest to lowest were: Extension Organization and Administration ( M = 4.29, SD = .57 ); Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods ( M = 4.19, S D = .57 ); Professionalism and Professional Development ( M = 4.11, SD = .56 ); Subject Matter Expertise ( M = 4.06, SD = .59 ); Information and Communication Technologies ( M = 3.99, SD = .74 ); Program Planning and Development ( M = 3.96, SD = .58 ); Evaluation o f Extension Programs ( M = 3.78, SD = .68 ); and External Linkages ( M = 3.68, SD = .70 ). Extension officers in CARICOM perceived their competence in the application of seven compe tency areas to be above average ( see Table 4 3). From highest to lowest they w ere: Extension Organization and Administration ( M = 4.20, SD = .56 ); Professionalism and Professional Development ( M = 4.03, SD = .60 ); Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods ( M = 3.99, SD = .62 ); Subject Matter Expertise ( M = 3.88, SD = .68 ); Program Plann ing and Development ( M = 3.76, SD = .65 ); Information and Communication Technologies ( M = 3.65, SD = .80 ); and Evaluation of Extension Programs ( M = 3.52 , SD = .79 ). External Linkages ( M = 3.46, SD = .75 ) was perceived to be the competency area where the l evel of application was average. Graphs were used to depict the means and upper and lower limits at 95% confidence interval for each competency area for importance, knowledge, and application. For importance, External Linkages is statistically significan tly different from the other seven competency area s ( see Figure 4 1 ). Extension Organization and Administration wa s different from Program Planning and Development, Evaluation of Extension Programs, Information and Communication Technologies, and External

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99 Linkages. With regards to knowledge, Extension Organization and Administration was significantly different from all competency areas except Extension Teaching, Tools, and Methods. External Linkages was statistically significantly different from all compe tency areas except for Evaluation o f Extension Programs ( see Figure 4 2 ). For application, Extension Organization and Administration was statistically significantly different from all competency areas with the exception of Professionalism and Professional Development. Professionalism and Professional Development and Extension Teaching Tools and Methods overlapped, but were different from Program Planning and Development, Information and Communication Technologies, Evaluation of Extension Programs and Exte rnal Linkages. External Linkages was different from all competency areas except for Information and Communication Technologies, and Evaluation of Extension Programs ( see Figure 4 3 ). Findings Related to Objective 2: Determine training needs for specific c ompetencies based on gaps between perceptions of importance and knowledge and gaps between knowledge and application in identified competencies. This objective identifies the level of knowledge or how much extension officers know about each competency ite m, and their level of application or how skilled the officers are in the use of the competency item. Items with po sitive means require areas where training is needed. The 95% confidence interval of the difference of the KMWDS and AMWDS were used to help determine the appropriate ness of off for priority items. The knowledge mean weighted discrepancy scores (KMWDS) for Competency Area I: Professionalism and Professional Development were all below 2, ( see Table 4 -

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100 4). Table 4 5 shows the confidence interval for a few of the competency items to be above 2.0. However, the wide gap between the upper and lower limits would suggest following competency items for Professionalism and Professional Development had application me an weighted discrepancy scores (AMWDS) that were greater than 2 .0 : (a) Provide research based information to the public; (b) Promote the extensio n department to decision makers; (c) Identify opportunities for professional development; (d ) Seek professional affiliations that will ) Promote the profession to others; and (f ) Use professional, technical publications to keep up to date and grow professionally. The remaining 11 competency items had AMWDS that were below 2 .0 and we re not priority training areas ( see Table 4 6 ). The upper and lower limits of the 9 5% confidence intervals are presented in Table 4 7 which indicates additional competency items wi th upper limits of AMWDS above 2.0. However, the lower limits were far enou gh below 2.0 that none of the additional competency items were added to the priority training list. Similar to Competency Area I, all the competency items in Competency Area II: Extension Organization and A dministration had KMWDS below 2 (see Table 4 8 ). The KMWDS ranged from 1.62 for Understand the policies of the extension department to 0.61 for Attend staff meetings. Table 4 9 shows only one competency item had a KMWDS at the 95% confidence interval with an upper limit of just over 2.0. The closeness t o 2.0 coupled with the wide range indicates the real value is likely to fall under 2.0. For Extension Organization and Administration, Understand the goals of the extension department was the only competency item t

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101 ( see Table 4 10 ). Additional items in Competency area II A M WDS for Extension Organization and Administration with upper limits of the 95% confidence interval greater than 2.0. However, the wide confidence interval indica tes it is likely that the real score may be lower than 2.0, so no additional items are added to the list as priority for training (see Table 2 11). In Competency Area III: Program Planning and Development, only one competency item had a KMWDS of 2 .0 and ab ove Develop long term extension program plans, ex tending beyond 2 3 years (2.14) ( see Table 4 12 ). The 95% confidence intervals of the KMWDS are presented in Table 4 13. It shows three additional items with upper limits close to 2.0 and lower limits cl ose to 1.0. This wide range indicates the true mean is likely to fall below 2.0, so no additional items are added to the list of priority training items. The AMWDS for 60% of the competency items for Program Planning and Development were greater than two . In order of priority, these were: (a) Develop long term extension program plans, extending beyond 2 3 years (3.50); (b) Organize an effective program planning committee (3.27); (c) Translate needs assessment information into general problem statement ( 2.69); (d) Establish programming priorities (2.38); (e) Align program priorities at the local level with national priorities (2.33); (f) Develop short term program objectives (2.28); (g) Assess available local/community resources (2.28); (h) Consult profes sionals with knowledge and experience about planning educational activities (2.24); and (i) Develop long term program objectives (2.04) ( see Table 4 14 ). T able 4 15 shows the lower and upper limits of the 95% confidence interval for the AMWDS of several c ompetency items in Program Planning

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102 and Development above the training priority cut off of 2.0 . Thus, it is a certainty the real value is above 2.0. Although Develop annual p rogram of w ork and Conduct interviews to obtain information for the planning pro cess ha ve upper limit s well above 2.0, the lower limit s fall well below 2.0 ; therefore, it is likely the real value is below 2.0 . Thus, they will not be added as priority training items. All competency items in Competency Area IV: Extension Teaching, Too ls and Meth ods had KMWDS that were below 2 .0 ( see Table 4 1 6 ). Table 4 17 shows the upper limits of the 95% confidence interval for the KMWDS for Extension Teaching Tools and Methods to be below 2.0. Thus, no additional items need to be considered for ad dition to the list of priority training items. A total of 50% of the competency items for Extension Teaching, Tools, and Methods had AMWDS greater than 2.0 . The competency items in order of priority for training in application were: (a) Establish and ma nage demonstration plots (2.70); (b) Conduct result demonstrations (2.67); (c) Develop instructional materials for a teaching activity (2.34); (d) Understand the principles of teaching and learning (2.31); (e) Collect instructional materials to be used for a teaching activity (2.22); (f) Conduct on farm trials (2.11); (g) Develop measurable educational/teaching objectives to guide your teaching understanding of subject (2.07) ( see Table 4 1 8 ). Conduct workshops was the only additional competency item with AMWDS upper limit for the 95% confidence interval for Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods above 2 .0 . The confidence interval is large, with the lower limit well below 2.0, so i t is likely the real mean is below the cut off. Therefore, it will not be added to the list of priority training items (see Table 4 19).

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103 Competency Area V: Evaluation of Extension Programs had three competency items with KMWDS at 2 or above. These were: (a) Perform evaluation of extension programs on an annual basis (2.19); (b) Establish criteria for judging the success or failure of a program (2.05); and (c) Understand the procedures for evaluat ing an extension program (2.02) ( see Table 4 20 ). Table 4 21 shows the upper limit for the KMWDS for the competency item Communicate evaluation information to stakeholders (extension and ministry or department officials, farmers, agricultural organizations and other agencies to be well above 2.0 and the lower lim it close enough to 2.0 that this will be added to the list of priority training items. All the competency items in the Compete ncy Area V had AMWDS above 2 .0 ( see Table 4 2 2 ). The AMWDS for Evaluation of Extension Programs competency items had lower limit s for the 95% confidence intervals that were very close to 2.0 and upper limits well above 2.0. This 2.0 (see Table 4 23 ). Competency Area VI: Information and Communication Technologies did not have any KMWDS of 2 .0 or greate r, (see Table 4 24 ). There is a wide gap between the lower and upper limits of the 95% confidence intervals for the items in the KMWDS for Information and Communication Technologies. The lower limits are well below 2.0 or very close to 1.0 and the upper limit just above 2.0. Therefore, it can be said with certainty the real value of these items are likely below 2.0 (see Table 4 25 ) . The AMWDS for 45% of the competency items for Information and Communication Technologies were above 2: (a) Use TV to prod uce educational programs (3.80); (b) Use the computer for distance/online education (3.78); (c) Use radio to produce educational programs (2.94); (d) Analyze situations to identify the need

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104 for educational and information technology (2.54); and (e) Use ema il to provide information to clientele (2.37) ( see Table 4 26 ). For the competency area Information and Communication Technologies the AMWDS for Analyze situations to identify the need for educational and informational technolog ies , Use TV to produce educa tional programs, Use radio to produce educational programs, and Use the computer for distance/online education all had lower limits for the 95% confidence intervals above 2.0. It means the true value of these items is above 2.0. The lower limit of Use em ail to provide information to clientele is close enough to 2.0 to say with some certainty the true value is likely to be 2.0 or above (see Table 4 27 ) . For Competency Area VII: Subject Matter Expertise, the KMWDS was above 2 .0 for only one item Understan d an d solve complex problems (2.24) ( see Table 4 28 ). The lower limit of the 95% confidence interval for Understand and solve complex problems was below 2.0, but is close enough to 2.0 that it is likely th (see Table 4 29 ). The upper lim its for three additional competency items are also slightly above 2.0; thus, it is likely the true value for these items will fall below 2.0. The AMWDS of 75% of the competency items in the Subject Matter Expertise competency area were above 2 .0 : (a) Un derstand and solve complex problems (3.21); (b) Conduct research to produce un biased solution to the issue (2.82); (c) Ability to modify instructional approach to the audience (2.66); (d) Ability to implement an appropriate strategy to resolve the issue ( 2.59); (e) Regularly review literature to stay current in the field (2.22); (f) Engaging audience to promote high level of learning and involvement (2.18); and (g) Ability to easily iden tify and define an issue (2.12) ( see Table 4 30 ). Table 4 31 shows th e upper limits for the 95% confidence interval for the

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105 competency items in Subject Matter Expertise are all above 2.0. The lower limits for Knowledgeable for subject area of responsibility and Ability to explain technical information in simple terms had l ower limits well below 2.0. This suggests the real score is likely to be lower than 2.0. All of the competency items in Competency Area VIII: External Li nkages had KMWDS of less than 2 ( see Table 4 32 ). The KMWDS for competency area External Linkages had two competency items with upper limits just above 2.0 at the 95% conf idence interval (see Table 4 33 ). The lower limits were closer to 1.0; hence, it is likely the true value of these items would be less than 2.0. A total of 66% of the competency i tems in the External Linkages competency area had AMWDS of 2 .0 or higher. Listed from highest to lowest they were: (a) Maintain an advisory program for programming which represents the diversity of clientele (2.66); (b) Collaborate with a diverse range of organizations for program development (2.63); (c) Understand approaches for nurturing successful partnerships, collaborations, and networks (2.58); (d) Knowledge of the definitions and characteristics of partnerships, collaborations, and networks (2.25); (e) Familiar with local examples of partnerships, collaborations, and networks (2.22); (f) Know the names of community agencies and how they help or hinder your program (2.19); (g) Understand the culture of the district (2.13); and (h) Personal acquaintanc e with government minister under whose ministry you r department falls (2.01) ( see Table 4 34 ). Table 4 35 shows the competency item Personal acquaintance with government minister under whose ministry your department falls has an upper limit above 2.0. How ever, it is not close enough to 2.0 to justify adding to the list of priority items for training.

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106 Based on the review of the lower and upper limits of the 95% confidence intervals Communicate evaluation information to stakeholders (extension and ministry o r department officials, farmers, agricultural organizations and other agencies) was the only competency item added to the priority training list to increase level of knowledge. The upper limit of the 95% confidence interval was added to the KMWDS of each c ompetency item to determine the priority ranking of each item to increase the level of knowledge. The total number of competency items which are considered priority for training in each competency area for knowledge and applic ation is presented in Table 4 36 . The upper limit of the 95% confidence interval s was also added to the AMWDS of each competency item to determine the priority rank ing of each item to increase proficiency in application (see Table 4 37 ) . Findings Related to Objective 3: Determine if d competency importance, knowledge, and application based on gender and level of education and relationships that existed for age and length of employment, for each competency area. Calculations were weighted by relative nonresponse weights. Only the significant results were reported in detail in this section. Gender Independent samples t tests indicated t here were no significant differences at the alpha level of .05 between males and females for importance, knowledge, and application in the following competency areas: (a) Professionalism and Professional Development; (b) Extension Organization and Administration; and (c) Program Planning and Development. Males and females did not differ signific antly in their perceptions of knowledge and application in the following competency areas: (a) Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods; (b) Subject Matter Expertise; and (c) External Linkages. Male and

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107 female perceptions of application were not significant f or (a) Evaluation of Extension Programs; and (b) Information and Communication Technologies. There was a significant difference between male ( M = 69.8, SD = 8.3) and female ( M = 72.5, SD = 7.4) perceptions on the importance of Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods competency area; t (184) = 2.09, p = 0.04 ( see Table 4 38 ). The effect size was small ( d = 0.34). There was a significant difference between male ( M = 45.6, SD = 7.2) and female ( M = 48.1, SD = 7.2) perceptions on the importance of Evaluation of Extension Programs competency area; t (202 ) = 2.3, p = 0.02 ( see Table 4 38 ). The effect size was small ( d = 0.35). Significant differences existed between male ( M = 44.8, SD = 8.8) and female ( M = 48.9, SD = 6.6) perceptions on the importance of Info rmation and Communication Technologies competency area; t (202) = 3.3, p = 0.001 ( see Table 4 38 ). The effect size was medium ( d = 0.53). A significant difference also existed between male ( M = 42.7, SD = 8.2) and female ( M = 46.5, SD = 7.5) perceptions on the knowledge of Information and Communication Technologies competency area; t (201) = 3.3, p = 0.002. The effect size was small ( d = 0.48). Perceptions on the importance of Subject Matter Expertise competency area was significantly different for ma les ( M = 39.3, SD = 5.2) and females ( M = 40.8, SD = 4.6), t (206) = 3.3, p = 0.04 ( see Table 4 38 ). There was a significant difference between male ( M = 46.7, SD = 8.9) and female ( M = 49.7, SD = 7.6) perceptions on the importance of External Lin k ages co mpetenc y area; t (199) = 2.3, p = 0.02 ( see Table 4 38 ). Year Born There were no significant correlation between age /year of birth of the respondents and their perceptions of the importance, knowledge, and application in

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108 seven competency areas. A signif icant correlation was observed between actual age of the respondents and Information and Communication Technologies for knowledge ( r = 0. 28) and application( r = 0. 27) at the = 0.01 level (see Tables 4 39 and 4 40 ). The measure of effect size r indicates there is a small to almost medium correlation between Information and Communication Technologi es (see Figure 4 5 and 4 6). Level of Education There are six levels of education in the study: Secondary of High School, Certifica te, Diploma or Associate Degree: Bachelors, Masters, and Ph . D . , assigned 1 6 , respectively. The level of education categories represented the independent variable of education importance, knowledge, and application of each competency area. Significant differences did not exist at the alpha level of 0.05 betwee education and their perception of importance, knowledge, and application in the following competency areas: (a) Program Planning and Development; (b) Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods; (c) Subject Matter Expertise; and (d ) External Linkages. Professionalism and professional d evelopment The ANOVA revealed a statistically significant F (5, 196) = 2.57 at p < .05. Thus , it can be inferred the population means across groups were not equal for knowledge. The measure of effe ct size ( R squared) indicates 6 % of variance is shared between variables ( see Table 4 41 ) . The Tukey HSD post hoc test revealed a statistically significant pairwise comparison among Bachelors ( M = 72.51, SD = 8.12) and Associate Degrees ( M = 67.63, SD = 9.1 1), ( p = .01) . There were no significant differences

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109 between level of education and importance and level of education and application for Professionalism and Professional Development. Extension organization and a dministration The ANOVA revealed a statis tically significant F (5, 236 ) = 3.72 at p < .05 ( see Table 4 42 ) . Thus , it can be inferred the population means across groups were not equal for importance . The Tukey post hoc test did not show any significance; however, the Games Howell post hoc test r evealed a statistically significant difference existed between Associate Degree ( M = 48.83, SD = 5.70) and Secondary or H igh School Diploma ( M = 52.53, SD = 2.67), ( p = .002); and Bachelors ( M = 51.0, SD = 4.46) and Associate Degree ( M = 48.83, SD = 5.70), ( p = .04) for level of education and importance. The measure of effect size ( R squared) indicates 7% of the variance is shared between the variables. The ANOVA revealed a statistically significant F (5, 231 ) = 2.68 at p < .05. Thus , it can be inferred t he population means across groups were not equal for knowledge . The Tukey HSD revealed a statistica lly significant difference existed between Bachelors ( M = 49.03, SD = 5.47) and Associate Degree ( M = 45.98, SD = 5.70), ( p = 0.10) for knowledge . The meas ure of effect size ( R squared) indicates 6% of the variance is shared be tween variables ( see Table 4 43 ). The ANOVA revealed a statistically significant F (5, 229 ) = 3.04 at p < .05. Thus , it can be inferred the population means across groups were not equ al for application . Tukey HSD revealed a statistica lly significant difference existed between Associate Degree ( M = 44.81, SD = 5.92) ( M = 48.06, SD = 4.81), ( p = .004) for application . The measure of effect size ( R squared) indicat es 6% of the variance is shared between the variables ( see Table 4 44 ).

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110 Evaluation of extension p rograms There were no significant differences between level of education and importance and level of education and application of the Evaluation of Extension P rograms. The ANOVA revealed a statistically significant F (5, 229 ) = 3.04 at p < .05. Thus , it can be inferred the population means across groups were not equal for knowledge . The Tukey HSD revealed a statistica lly significant difference existed betwe en A ssociate Degree ( M = 40.02, SD = 7.53) and Masters ( M = 46.36, SD = 7.14), ( p = .03) and the level of knowledge. The measure of effect size ( R squared) indicates 5% of the variance is shared between the variables ( see Table 4 45 ). Information and communic ation t echnologies There were no significant differences between level of education and importance and leve l of education and application for Information an d Communication Technologies. For knowledge, t he ANOVA revealed a statistically significant F (5, 2 37 ) = 4.79 at p < .05. Thus , it can be inferred the population means across groups were not equal for knowledge . The Tukey HSD revealed a statistica lly significant difference existed between Associate Degree ( M = 42.19, SD = 8.77) and Bachelors ( M = 46.5 8, SD = 5.54), ( p = .002 and Associate Degree ( M = 42.19, SD = 8.77) and Masters ( M = 49.85, SD = 6.22), ( p =.009) for knowledge ( see Table 4 46 ). Years of Experience The actual years of experience as recorded by the respondents was analyzed using Pearson differences at the alpha level of 0.01 s of importance, knowledge, and application in the following competency areas: (a) Professionalism and Professional Devel opment; (b) Extension Organization and Administration; (c)

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111 Extension Program Planning; (d) Extension Teaching Tools and Methods; (e) Evaluation of Extension Programs; and (f) Subject Matter Expertise. A negative correlation was observed between years of e xperience and Information and Communication Technologies for importance, knowledge, and application at the = 0.01 level (see Tables 4 47 to 4 49 ). As years of experience increased , perceptions of the importance, knowledge, and application decr eased. The measure of effect size r indicates there is a small to medium correlation between years of experience and importance of Information and Communication Technologies (see Figure 4 7). A medium correlation ( r = 0.37) existed between ( 0.29) years of experience and knowledge of Information and Communication Technologies (see Figure 4 8). The correlation ( r = 0.32) between years of experience and application of Information and Communication Technologies is also medium (see Figure 4 9). A negative correlation was also observed between actual years of experience External Linkages for Importance at the = 0.01 level (see Table 4 50 ). The measure of effect size r ( 0.18) indicates a small correlation between years of exper ience and the extension offi cer s of the importance of External Linkages (see Figure 4 10). Chapter Summary eight competency areas were all above average. Their perception of proficiency in application was above average in seven c ompetency areas and average in External L inkages. Extension Organization and Administration had the highest means for

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112 importance, knowledge, and application. Similarly, External Linkages ranked last with the lowest perceived means for importance, knowledge, and application. The MWDS were calculated for knowledge and application to determine where gaps existed, which are areas where training is needed. A positive score indicated a need for training. The researcher set a cut off KMWDS and AMWDS of 2 in order to prioritize training needs. Thus, items with scores of two and above were considered priority areas for training. Using these criteria , there were five priority training areas based on the KMWDS and 55 priorit y areas based on the AMWDS. Extension officers perceived themselves to be least proficient in Evaluation of Extension Programs and External Linkages and most proficient in Extension Organization and Administration. Significant differences existed for male s and females in their perception of the importance of Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods; importance of Evaluation of Extension Programs; importance and knowledge of Information and Communication Technologies; importance of Subject Matter Expertise; an d External Linkages. There was a positive correlation between the year respondents were born and their perceptions of knowledge and application of Information and Communication Technologies . Significant differences were observed for level of education in the importance, knowledge and application; and for knowledge of Information and Communication Technologies. There was a negative correlation between years of service and impo rtance, knowledge, and application of Information and Communication Technologies; and importance of External Linkages.

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113 Table 4 1 . Overall Means for Perception of Importance in Competency Areas for CARICOM Calculated By Relative Nonresponse Weights Compet ency Area Importance Confidence Interval Rank M SD Lower Upper Extension Organization and Administration 1 4.53 .49 4.46 4.60 Professionalism and Professional Development 2 4.43 .45 4.37 4.50 Subject Matter Expertise 3 4.42 .56 4.34 4.49 Extension T eaching, Tools and Methods 3 4.42 .51 4.34 4.49 Program Planning and Development 5 4.25 .57 4.17 4.33 Evaluation of Extension Programs 6 4.22 .66 4.12 4.31 Information and Communication Technologies 7 4.19 .76 4.08 4.29 External Linkages 8 3.97 .72 3.8 7 4.07 Note . . Scale for interpretation of mean values: 0.00 1.49 = extremely low importance, knowledge, application (no competence) ; 1.50 2.49 = below average importance, knowledge, or application (less than average compe tence) ; 2.50 3.49 = average importance, knowledge, or application (average competence) ; 3.50 4.49 = above average importance, knowledge, or application (above average competence) ; 4.50 5.00 = extremely high importance, knowledge, or application (ver y competent) . Table 4 2. Overall Means for Perception of Knowledge in Competency Areas for CARICOM Calculated By Relative Nonresponse Weights Competency Area Knowledge Confidence Interval Rank M SD Lower Upper Extension Organization and Administrati on 1 4.29 .57 4.21 4.37 Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods 2 4.19 .57 4.11 4.27 Professionalism and Professional Development 3 4.11 .56 4.03 4.20 Subject Matter Expertise 4 4.06 .59 3.98 4.14 Information and Communication Technologies 5 3.99 .74 3.8 9 4.09 Program Planning and Development 6 3.96 .58 3.87 4.04 Evaluation of Extension Programs 7 3.78 .68 3.69 3.88 External Linkages 8 3.68 .70 3.58 3.78 Note . . Scale for interpretation of mean values: 0.00 1.49 = extrem ely low importance, knowledge, application (no competence) ; 1.50 2.49 = below average importance, knowledge, or application (less than average competence) ; 2.50 3.49 = average importance, knowledge, or application (average competence) ; 3.50 4.49 = a bove average importance, knowledge, or application (above average competence) ; 4.50 5.00 = extremely high importance, knowledge, or application (very competent) .

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114 Table 4 3. Overall Means for Perception of Application in Competency Areas for CARICOM Calcu lated By Relative Nonresponse Weights Competency Area Application Confidence Interval Rank M SD Lower Upper Extension Organization and Administration 1 4.20 .56 4.12 4.28 Professionalism and Professional Development 2 4.03 .60 3.94 4.12 Extension Te aching, Tools and Methods 3 3.99 .62 3.90 4.08 Subject Matter Expertise 4 3.88 .68 3.78 3.97 Program Planning and Development 5 3.76 .65 3.66 3.85 Information and Communication Technologies 6 3.65 .80 3.54 3.76 Evaluation of Extension Programs 7 3.52 . 79 3.41 3.64 External Linkages 8 3.46 .75 3.35 3.57 Note . . Scale for interpretation of mean values: 0.00 1.49 = extremely low importance, knowledge, application (no competence) ; 1.50 2.49 = below average importance, know ledge, or application (less than average competence) ; 2.50 3.49 = average importance, knowledge, or application (average competence) ; 3.50 4.49 = above average importance, knowledge, or application (above average competence) ; 4.50 5.00 = extremely h igh importance, knowledge, or application (very competent) . Table 4 4 . Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area I Professionalism and Professional Development Competency Items KMWDS SD Maintain high ethical standards 1.92 3.33 Pro vide research based information to the public 1.90 3.76 Use professional, technical publications to keep up to date and grow professionally 1.89 3.24 knowledge base 1.76 2.94 Promote the extension d epartment to decision makers 1.7 0 3.24 Contribute to the knowledge base of the extension department 1.37 3.05 Promote the profession to others 1.37 3.07 Accept responsibility for actions 1.32 2.96 Identify opportunities for professional development 1.3 0 3.14 Apply best practices to all aspects of work 1.22 3.06 Self evaluate strengths and weaknesses as an extension officer 1.16 3.37

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115 Table 4 4. Continued Competency Items KMWDS SD Collaborate with other professionals 1.14 2.75 Share information wit h colleagues 1.08 2.72 Demonstrate attributes of a positive role model 1.07 3.10 Is a catalyst for response to community needs 1.00 2.47 Attend relevant in service training available to you 1.00 3.19 Is accountable for actions .83 2.71 Table 4 5. K MWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea I Professionalism and Professional Development Competency item Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Demonstrate attributes of a positive role model 1.07 .65 1.49 Maintain high ethical sta ndards 1.92 1.47 2.37 Is accountable for actions .83 .46 1.20 Accept responsibility for actions 1.32 .92 1.72 Apply best practices to all aspects of work 1.22 .81 1.63 Contribute to the knowledge base of the extension department 1.37 .96 1.78 Provide research based information to the public 1.90 1.38 2.41 Collaborate with other professionals 1.14 .77 1.51 Seek professional affiliations that will 1.76 1.36 2.15 Promote the profession to others 1.37 .95 1.78 Is a catalyst for response to community needs 1.00 .67 1.34 Promote the extension department to decision makers 1.70 1.26 2.14 Identify opportunities for professional development 1.30 .88 1.73

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116 Table 4 5. Continued Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Di fference Lower Upper Attend relevant in service training available to you 1.00 .57 1.43 Self evaluate strengths and weaknesses as an extension officer 1.16 .71 1.61 Use professional, technical publications to keep up to date and grow professionally 1 .89 1.45 2.33 Share information with colleagues 1.08 .72 1.45 Table 4 6. Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area I Professionalism and Professional Development Competency Items AMWDS SD Provide research based information to the public 2.58 4.57 Promote the extension department to decision makers 2.51 3.9 0 Identify opportunities for professional development 2.38 4.03 knowledge base 2.22 3.6 0 Promote the profession to othe rs 2.2 0 3.71 Use professional, technical publications to keep up to date and grow professionally 2.05 3.58 Is a catalyst for response to community needs 1.72 3.47 Self evaluate strengths and weaknesses as an extension officer 1.66 3.46 Maintain high et hical standards 1.57 3.35 Attend relevant in service training available to you 1.56 3.91 Collaborate with other professionals 1.56 3.37 Apply best practices to all aspects of work 1.54 3.13 Contribute to the knowledge base of extension department 1.52 3.55 Demonstrate attributes of a positive role model 1.43 3.31 Accept responsibility for actions 1.41 3.07 Share information with colleagues 1.33 3.27 Is accountable for actions 1.16 3.1 0

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117 Table 4 7. AMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea I Professionalism and Professional Development Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Demonstrate attributes of a positive role model 1.43 .98 1.88 Maintain high ethical standards 1.57 1.11 2.02 Is accountable for a ctions 1.16 .73 1.58 Accept responsibility for actions 1.41 .99 1.82 Apply best practices to all aspects of work 1.54 1.12 1.96 Contribute to the knowledge base of the extension department 1.52 1.04 1.99 Provide research based information to the public 2.58 1.95 3.21 Collaborate with other professionals 1.56 1.10 2.02 Seek professional affiliations that will 2.22 1.74 2.71 Promote the profession to others 2.20 1.69 2.71 Is a catalyst for response to community needs 1.72 1.25 2.19 Promote the extension department to decision makers 2.51 1.98 3.04 Identify opportunities for professional development 2.38 1.83 2.93 Attend relevant in service training available to you 1.56 1.04 2.09 Self evaluate strengths and weaknesses a s an extension officer 1.66 1.19 2.13 Use professional, technical publications to keep up to date and grow professionally 2.05 1.56 2.54 Share information with colleagues 1.33 .88 1.77

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118 Table 4 8 . Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competenc y Area II Extension Organization and Administration Competency Items KMWDS SD Understand the policies of the extension department 1.62 2.99 Understand the overall organizational structure of the extension department 1.50 3.11 Understand the goals of t he extension department 1.48 2.9 Manage time effectively 1.24 2.77 Understand the mission of the extension department 1.23 2.97 Follow established administrative procedures 1.11 3.02 Understand the duties of your position 1.00 2.81 Write accurate repo rts 0.87 2.73 Compile periodic reports of extension activities (weekly, biweekly, monthly, quarterly, annually) 0.68 2.45 Establish working relationships with other extension staff 0.63 2.35 Attend staff meetings 0.61 2.09 Table 4 9. KMWDS C onfidenc e I nterval for C ompetency A rea II Extension Organization and Administration Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Understand the overall organizational structure of the extension department 1.50 1.08 1.92 Understand t he mission of the extension department 1.23 .83 1.63 Understand the policies of the extension department 1.62 1.21 2.02 Understand the goals of the extension department 1.48 1.09 1.87 Understand the duties of your position 1.0 .62 1.38 Establish workin g relationships with other extension staff .63 .31 .95 Follow established administrative procedures 1.11 .71 1.52 Compile periodic reports of extension activities (weekly, biweekly, monthly, quarterly, annually) .68 .35 1.01 Write accurate reports .87 . 50 1.24 Attend staff meetings .61 .32 .89

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119 Table 4 10. Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area II Extension Organization and Administration Competency Items AMWDS SD Understand the goals of the extension department 2.09 3.28 Unde rstand the policies of the extension department 1.99 3.39 Understand the overall organizational structure of the extension department 1.88 3.34 Manage time effectively 1.84 3.29 Understand the mission of the extension department 1.72 3.41 Understand th e duties of your position 1.48 3.08 Write accurate reports 1.37 2.88 Follow established administrative procedures 1.35 3.39 Compile periodic reports of extension activities (weekly, biweekly, monthly, quarterly, annually) 1.02 2.83 Attend staff meeting s 0.78 2.8 0 Establish working relationships with other extension staff 0.78 2.45 Table 4 1 1 . AMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea II Extension Organization and Administration Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Low er Upper Understand the overall organizational structure of the extension department 1.88 1.43 2.33 Understand the mission of the extension department 1.72 1.26 2.18 Understand the policies of the extension department 1.99 1.53 2.44 Understand the goal s of the extension department 2.09 1.65 2.54 Understand the duties of your position 1.48 1.06 1.89 Establish working relationships with other extension staff .78 .45 1.11 Follow established administrative procedures 1.35 .89 1.81 Compile periodic repor ts of extension activities (weekly, biweekly, monthly, quarterly, annually) 1.02 .64 1.39

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120 Table 4 11. Continued Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Write accurate reports 1.37 .98 1.76 Attend staff meetings .78 . 40 1.16 Understand the overall organizational structure of the extension department 1.84 1.40 2.29 Table 4 12 . Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area III Program Planning and Development Competency Items KMWDS SD Develop long t erm extension program plans 2.14 3.69 Organize an effective program planning committee 1.82 3.61 Assess available local/community resources 1.67 2.88 Establish program priorities 1.63 3.04 Align program priorities at the local level with national prior ities 1.55 2.87 Translate needs assessment information into general problem statement 1.52 2.89 Consult professionals with knowledge and experience about planning educational activities 1.34 3.16 Develop long term program objectives 1.29 2.62 Conduct i nterviews to obtain information for planning process 1.22 2.81 Collect and use information about your district/region 1.21 2.49 Develop short term program objectives 1.15 2.66 Develop an annual program of work 1.12 2.67 Conduct a need or problem assess ment of your assigned extension district/region 1.01 2.91 Develop monthly work schedule 0.43 2.8 0 Develop weekly work schedule 0.39 2.21

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121 Table 4 13. KMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea III Program Planning and Development Compet ency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Collect and use information about your district/region 1.21 .88 1.55 Conduct a need or problem assessment of your assigned extension district/region 1.01 .62 1.40 Conduct interviews to o btain information for planning process 1.22 .84 1.59 Consult professionals with knowledge and experience about planning educational activities 1.34 .91 1.76 Assess available local/community resources 1.67 1.29 2.06 Develop long term extension program p lans (extending beyond 2 3 years) 2.14 1.64 2.64 Develop an annual program of work 1.12 .76 1.48 Develop weekly work schedule .3 9 .09 .69 Develop monthly work schedule .43 .05 .80 Develop short term program objectives 1.15 .79 1.51 Develop long term p rogram objectives 1.29 .94 1.65 Translate needs assessment information into general problem statement 1.52 1.13 1.91 Establish programming priorities 1.63 1.22 2.04 Align program priorities at the local level with national priorities 1.55 1.16 1.93 Org anize an effective program planning committee 1.82 1.33 2.30

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122 Table 4 14 . Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area III Program Planning and Development Competency Items AMWDS SD Develop long term extension program plans (e xtending beyond 2 3 years) 3.50 4.58 Organize an effective program planning committee 3.27 4.69 Translate needs assessment information into general problem statement 2.69 3.70 Establish programming priorities 2.38 3.59 Align program priorities at the l ocal level with national priorities 2.33 3.80 Develop short term program objectives 2.28 3.64 Assess available local/community resources 2.28 3.52 Consult professionals with knowledge and experience about planning educational activities 2.24 3.61 Devel op long term program objectives 2.04 4.06 Develop an annual program of work 1.95 3.65 Conduct interviews to obtain information for planning process 1.90 3.80 Conduct a need or problem assessment of your assigned extension district/region 1.61 3.57 Coll ect and use information about your district/region 1.56 3.25 Develop monthly work schedule 1.18 3.40 Develop weekly work schedule 1.01 2.94 Table 4 15. AMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea III Program Planning and Development Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Collect and use information about your district/region 1.56 1.12 1.99 Conduct a need or problem assessment of your assigned extension district/region 1.61 1.13 2.09 Conduct interviews to obta in information for planning process 1.89 1.39 2.41 Consult professionals with knowledge and experience about planning educational activities 2.24 1.76 2.73 Assess available local/community resources 2.28 1.80 2.75 Develop long term extension program p lans (extending beyond 2 3 years) 3.50 2.88 4.13

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123 Table 4 15. Continued Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Develop an annual program of work 1.95 1.46 2.44 Develop weekly work schedule 1.01 .62 1.41 Develop monthl y work schedule 1.18 .7 2 1.63 Develop short term program objectives 2.28 1.79 2.77 Develop long term program objectives 2.04 1.49 2.58 Translate needs assessment information into general problem statement 2.69 2.19 3.18 Establish programming priorities 2.38 1.89 2.87 Align program priorities at the local level with national priorities 2.33 1.82 2.84 Organize an effective program planning committee 3.27 2.64 3.90 Table 4 1 6 . Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area IV Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods Competency Items KMWDS SD Collect instructional materials to be used for a teaching activity 1.43 2.85 understanding of subject 1.37 2.83 Establish and manage demo nstration plots 1.34 2.92 Understand the principles of teaching and learning 1.31 3.12 Develop instructional materials to be used for a teaching activity 1.31 3.10 Conduct result demonstrations 1.26 2.68 Develop measurable educational/teaching objectiv es to guide your teaching 1.12 2.97 Conduct on farm trials 1.02 2.69 Conduct workshops 0.94 2.59 Explain technical terms to clientele in simple language 0.86 2.48 Facilitate group discussion 0.77 2.28 Conduct field days 0.60 2.32 Teach with overhead slide projector 0.39 3.24 Lecture 0.38 3.35 Conduct individual farm visits 0.33 1.68 Teach with PowerPoint presentations 0.04 2.87

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124 Table 4 17. KMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea IV Extension Teaching Tools and Methods Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Develop measurable educational/teaching objectives to guide your teaching 1.12 .72 1.51 Develop instructional materials to be used for a teaching activity 1.31 .89 1.73 Collect instructional materi als to be used for a teaching activity 1.43 1.04 1.82 Understand the principles of teaching and learning 1.31 .90 1.73 Select appropriate teaching procedures to ensure 1.37 .99 1.75 Explain technical terms to clien tele in simple language .86 .52 1.19 Teach with PowerPoint presentations .04 .34 .43 Teach with overhead slide projector .39 .05 .82 Lecture .38 .08 .84 Conduct workshops .94 .59 1.29 Conduct field days .60 .29 .91 Establish and manage demonstra tion plots 1.34 .95 1.73 Conduct individual farm visits .33 .11 .56 Facilitate group discussion .77 .47 1.08 Conduct on farm trials 1.02 .66 1.38 Conduct result demonstrations 1.26 .90 1.62

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125 Table 4 1 8 . Application Mean Weighted Discrep ancy Scores: Competency Area IV Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods Competency Items AMWDS SD Establish and manage demonstration plots 2.70 4.64 Conduct results demonstrations 2.67 4.41 Develop instructional materials to be used for a teaching activ ity 2.34 3.90 Understand the principles of teaching and learning 2.31 3.96 Collect instructional materials to be used for a teaching activity 2.22 3.56 Conduct on farm trials 2.11 4.22 Develop measurable educational/teaching objectives to guide your te aching 2.08 3.58 understanding of subject 2.07 3.75 Conduct workshops 1.76 3.98 Facilitate group discussion 1.44 3 .00 Teach with overhead slide projector 1.29 4.16 Explain technical terms to clientele in simple language 2.7 0 4.64 Lecture 2.67 4.41 Conduct field days 2.34 3.9 0 Teach with PowerPoint presentations 2.31 3.96 Conduct individual farm visits 2.22 3.56 Table 4 19. AMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea IV Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Develop measurable educational/teaching objectives to guide your teaching 2.08 1.60 2.56 Develop instructional materials to be used for a teaching activ ity 2.34 1.81 2.86 Collect instructional materials to be used for a teaching activity 2.22 1.73 2.71 Understand the principles of teaching and learning 2.31 1.78 2.84 Select appropriate teaching procedures to subject 2.07 1.56 2.57 Explain technical terms to clientele in simple language 1.22 .84 1.59 Teach with PowerPoint presentations .83 .38 1.29

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126 Table 4 19. Continued Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Teach with overhea d slide projector 1.29 .73 1.85 Lecture 1.19 .75 1.64 Conduct workshops 1.76 1.22 2.29 Conduct field days 1.05 .64 1.47 Establish and manage demonstration plots 2.69 2.07 3.32 Conduct individual farm visits .75 .39 1.11 Facil itate group discussion 1.44 1.04 1.85 Conduct on farm trials 2.11 1.54 2.68 Conduct result demonstrations 2.67 2.08 3.26 Table 4 20 . Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area V Evaluation of Extension Programs Competency Items KMWDS SD Perform evaluati on of extension programs on an annual basis 2.19 3.15 Establish criteria for judging the success or failure of a program 2.05 3.23 Understand the procedures for evaluating an extension program 2.02 3.26 Communicate evaluation information to stakeholders (extension & ministry or department officials, farmers, agricultural organizations & other agencies) 1.95 3.16 Interpret findings from evaluation activities 1.88 3.13 Analyze findings from evaluation activities 1.86 2.94 Prepare reports using evaluatio n findings 1.82 3.62 Understand how to use qualitative data gathering techniques (ex. case studies) 1.77 3.36 Monitor extension program activities and make necessary adjustments 1.72 3.21 Understand the principles of program evaluation 1.57 2.94 Unders tand how to use quantitative data gathering techniques 1.2 0 3.03

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127 Table 4 2 1 . KMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea V Evaluation of Extension Programs Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Understand the principles of program evaluation 1.57 1.17 1.97 Understand the procedures for evaluating an extension program 2.02 1.58 2.46 Understand how to use quantitative data gathering techniques (ex. survey questionnaires) 1.20 .80 1.61 Understand how to use qu alitative data gathering techniques (ex. case studies) 1.77 1.31 2.22 Establish criteria for judging the success or failure of a program 2.05 1.61 2.48 Monitor extension program activities and make necessary adjustments 1.72 1.29 2.15 Analyze findings f rom evaluation activities 1.86 1.46 2.26 Interpret findings from evaluation activities 1.88 1.46 2.30 Perform evaluation of extension programs on an annual basis 2.19 1.76 2.61 Prepare reports using evaluation findings 1.82 1.33 2.31 Communicate evalu ation information to stakeholders (extension & ministry or department officials, farmers, agricultural organizations & other agencies) 1.95 1.52 2.37 Table 4 22 . Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area V Evaluation of Extension Programs Competency Items AMWDS SD Establish criteria for judging the success or failure of a program 3.22 4.04 Analyze findings from evaluation activities 3.11 3.86 Understand how to use qualitative data gathering techniques (ex. case studies) 3.05 4.3 4 Understand the principles of program evaluation 3.04 3.96 Understand the procedures for evaluating an extension program 3.03 4.11 Interpret findings from evaluation activities 3.01 3.9 0 Perform evaluation of extension programs on an annual basis 2.97 4.11

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128 Table 4 22. Continued Competency Items AMWDS SD Communicate evaluation information to stakeholders (extension & ministry or department officials, farmers, agricultural organizations & other agencies) 2.88 4.27 Understand how to use quantitat ive data gathering techniques (ex. survey questionnaires) 2.72 3.86 Monitor extension program activities and make necessary adjustments 2.36 3.93 Prepare reports using evaluation findings 2.24 4.54 Table 4 23. AMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea V Evaluation of Extension Programs Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Understand the principles of program evaluation 3.04 2.51 3.58 Understand the procedures for evaluating an extension program 3.03 2.48 3 .59 Understand how to use quantitative data gathering techniques (ex. survey questionnaires) 2.72 2.21 3.24 Understand how to use qualitative data gathering techniques (ex. case studies) 3.05 2.47 3.64 Establish criteria for judging the success or failu re of a program 3.22 2.68 3.77 Monitor extension program activities and make necessary adjustments 2.36 1.83 2.89 Analyze findings from evaluation activities 3.11 2.58 3.63 Interpret findings from evaluation activities 3.01 2.48 3.54 Perform evaluation of extension programs on an annual basis 2.97 2.41 3.53 Prepare reports using evaluation findings 2.24 1.63 2.86 Communicate evaluation information to stakeholders (extension & ministry or department officials, farmers, agricultural organizations & oth er agencies) 2.88 2.30 3.45

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129 Table 4 2 4 . Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area VI Information and Communication Technologies Competency Items KMWDS SD Use computer for distance/online education 1.65 4.21 Analyze situations to identify the need for educational and information technology 1.60 2.91 Use radio to produce educational programs 1.58 3.69 Use TV to produce educational programs 1.54 3.52 Use audio/visual materials and techniques with clientele 0.94 2.77 Use the comp uter to conduct administrative tasks 0.69 2.2 Use the computer to enhance personal knowledge 0.39 2.02 Use the computer as a source of information when preparing training materials 0.36 2.41 Use email to provide information to clientele 0.29 3.26 Use t he computer with communicating with supervisors and colleagues 0.11 2.75 Use mobile phone to provide information to clientele 0.06 2.53 Table 4 25 . KMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea VI Information and Communication Technologies Competen cy Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Analyze situations to identify the need for educational and information technology 1.60 1.21 1.99 Use email to provide information to clientele .29 .15 .73 Use mobile phone to provide inf ormation to clientele .06 .28 .40 Use the computer as a source of information when preparing training materials .36 .04 .69 Use computer to conduct administrative tasks .69 .39 .98 Use computer when communicating with supervisors and colleagues .11 .2 6 .48 Use the internet to enhance personal knowledge .39 .12 .67 Use audio/visual materials and techniques with clientele .94 .57 1.32 Use TV to produce educational programs 1.54 1.07 2.01 Use radio to produce educational programs 1.58 1.09 2.08 Use t he computer for distance or online education 1.65 1.09 2.22

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130 Table 4 2 6 . Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area VI Information and Communication Technologies Competency Items AMWDS SD Use TV to produce educational programs 3.80 5. 31 Use the computer for distance/online education 3.78 5.62 Use radio to produce educational programs 2.93 4.06 Analyze situations to identify the need for educational and information technology 2.54 3.95 Use email to provide information to clientele 2 .37 4.47 Use audio/visual materials and techniques with clientele 1.82 4.14 Use mobile phone to provide information to clientele 1.49 3.63 Use the internet to enhance personal knowledge 1.40 4.51 Use the computer to conduct administrative tasks 1.22 3. 16 Use the computer as a source of information when preparing training materials 0.82 3.33 Use the computer when communicating with supervisors and colleagues 0.77 3.61 Table 4 27 . AMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea VI Information and Co mmunication Technologies Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Analyze situations to identify the need for educational and information technology 2.54 2.00 3.07 Use email to provide information to clientele 2.37 1.76 2.97 Use mobile phone to provide information to clientele 1.49 1.00 1.97 Use the computer as a source of information when preparing training materials .82 .37 1.27 Use the computer to conduct administrative tasks. 1.22 .79 1.65 Use the computer when communicating with supervisors and colleagues .77 .29 1.26 Use the internet to enhance personal knowledge 1.40 .79 2.01 Use audio/visual materials and techniques with clientele 1.82 1.26 2.38 Use TV to produce educational programs 3.80 3.09 4.51 Use radio to produce ed ucational programs 2.93 2.39 3.48 Use the computer for distance/online education 3.79 3.02 4.53

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131 Table 4 28 . Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores Competency Area VII: Subject Matter Expertise Competency Items KMWDS SD Understand and solve complex problems 2.24 3.35 Ability to modify instructional approach to the audience 1.83 3.01 Knowledgeable in subject area of responsibility 1.75 3.05 Conduct research to provide unbiased solution to the issue 1.71 3.03 Regularly review literature to stay cu rrent in the field 1.66 2.86 Ability to implement an appropriate strategy to resolve the issue 1.48 2.8 0 Ability to easily identify and define an issue 1.36 2.88 Engaging audience to promote high level of learning and involvement 1.21 2.87 Ability to e xplain technical information in simple terms 0.98 2.49 Table 4 29 . KMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea VII Subject Matter Expertise Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Knowledgeable in subject area of r esponsibility 1.75 1.34 2.15 Regularly review literature to stay current in the field 1.66 1.27 2.04 Ability to easily identify and define an issue 1.36 .98 1.75 Ability to implement an appropriate strategy to resolve the issue 1.48 1.10 1.85 Conduct research to provide unbiased solution to the issue 1.71 1.29 2.12 Ability to explain technical information in simple terms .98 .65 1.31 Ability to modify instructional approach to the audience 1.83 1.42 2.23 Engaging audience to promote high level o f learning and involvement 1.21 .83 1.59 Understand and solve complex problems 2.24 1.80 2.69

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132 Table 4 30 . Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area VII Subject Matter Expertise Competency Items AMWDS SD Understand and solv e complex problems 3.21 4.01 Conduct research to provide unbiased solution to the issue 2.82 3.72 Ability to modify instructional approach to the audience 2.66 3.50 Ability to implement an appropriate strategy to resolve the issue 2.59 3.32 Regularly r eview literature to stay current in the field 2.22 3.56 Engaging audience to promote high level of learning and involvement 2.18 3.45 Ability to easily identify and define an issue 2.12 3.16 Knowledgeable in subject area of responsibility 1.79 3.00 Abi lity to explain technical information in simple terms 1.64 3.00 Table 4 31 . AMWDS Confidence interval for competency area VII Subject Matter Expertise Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Knowledgeable in subject area of respons ibility 1.79 1.39 2.19 Regularly review literature to stay current in the field 2.22 1.74 2.69 Ability to easily identify and define an issue 2.12 1.69 2.54 Ability to implement an appropriate strategy to resolve the issue 2.59 2.15 3.04 Conduct rese arch to provide unbiased solution to the issue 2.82 2.32 3.32 Ability to explain technical information in simple terms 1.64 1.23 2.04 Ability to modify instructional approach to the audience 2.66 2.19 3.14 Engaging audience to promote high level of l earning and involvement 2.18 1.72 2.65 Understand and solve complex problems 3.21 2.67 3.74

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133 Table 4 32 . Knowledge Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores Competency Area VIII: External Linkages Competency Items KMWDS SD Collaborate with a diverse ran ge of organizations for program development 1.71 3.14 Maintain an advisory council for programming which represents the diversity of clientele 1.69 3.23 Understand approaches for nurturing successful partnerships, collaborations, and networks 1.59 2.95 Know the names of community agencies and how they help or hinder your program 1.54 2.99 Understand the culture of the district 1.45 2.65 Familiar with local examples of partnerships, collaborations, and networks 1.31 2.69 Knowledge of the definitions an d characteristics of partnerships, collaborations, and networks 1.31 2.77 Maintain regular communication with the minister about your program 0.92 2.48 Ability to briefly articulate the key impacts of your extension program 0.81 2.34 Know local governme affiliations 0.68 2.73 Ability to briefly articulate what extension is and who we serve 0.59 2.18 Personal acquaintance with government minister under whose ministry your department falls 0.54 2.91 Table 4 33 . KMWDS Confidence interval for competency area VII External Linkages Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper districts, and party affiliations .68 .32 1.05 Personal acquaintanc e with government minister under whose ministry your department falls .54 .15 .94 Maintain regular communication with the minister about your program .92 .59 1.26 Understand the culture of the district 1.45 1.10 1.81 Ability to briefly articulate wha t extension is and who we serve .59 .29 .88 Ability to briefly articulate the key impacts of your extension program .81 .49 1.13

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134 Table 3 33 . Continued Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper Knowledge of the definitio ns and characteristics of partnerships, collaborations, and networks 1.31 .94 1.68 Familiar with local examples of partnerships, collaborations, and networks 1.31 .95 1.68 Understand approaches for nurturing successful partnerships, collaborations, and networks 1.59 1.19 1.98 Know the names of community agencies and how they help or hinder your program 1.54 1.13 1.94 Collaborate with a diverse range of organizations for program development 1.71 1.28 2.13 Maintain an advisory council for programming wh ich represents the diversity of clientele 1.69 1.25 2.13 Table 4 34 . Application Mean Weighted Discrepancy Scores: Competency Area VIII External Linkages Competency Items AMWDS SD Maintain an advisory council for programming which represents the dive rsity of clientele 2.66 4.66 Collaborate with a diverse range of organizations for program development 2.63 3.92 Understand approaches for nurturing successful partnerships, collaborations, and networks 2.58 3.50 Knowledge of the definitions and charact eristics of partnerships, collaborations, and networks 2.25 3.19 Familiar with local examples of partnerships, collaborations and networks 2.22 3.24 Know the names of community agencies and how they help or hinder your program 2.19 3.59 Understand the c ulture of the district 2.13 3.72 Personal acquaintance with government minister under whose ministry your department falls 2.01 3.63 Maintain regular communication with the minister about your program 1.75 3.46 istricts, and party affiliations 1.49 3.16 Ability to briefly articulate the key impacts of your extension program 1.35 2.88 Ability to briefly articulate what extension is and who we serve 0.95 2.72

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135 Table 4 35 . AMWDS Confidence I nterval for C ompetency A rea VIII External Linkages Competency Items Mean Difference 95% CI of the Difference Lower Upper districts, and party affiliations 1.49 1.06 1.92 Personal acquaintance with government minister under whose m inistry your department falls 2.01 1.52 2.49 Maintain regular communication with the minister about your program 1.75 1.29 2.22 Understand the culture of the district 2.13 1.63 2.63 Ability to briefly articulate what extension is and who we serve .9 5 .58 1.32 Ability to briefly articulate the key impacts of your extension program 1.35 .96 1.74 Knowledge of the definitions and characteristics of partnerships, collaborations, and networks 2.25 1.82 2.68 Familiar with local examples of partnerships, collaborations, and networks 2.22 1.78 2.66 Understand approaches for nurturing successful partnerships, collaborations, and networks 2.58 2.11 3.05 Know the names of community agencies and how they help or hinder your program 2.19 1.71 2.69 Collaborat e with a diverse range of organizations for program development 2.63 2.10 3.16 Maintain an advisory council for programming which represents the diversity of clientele 2.66 2.03 3.29

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136 Table 4 36 . Number of P riority T raining I tems for K nowledge and A pplication P er C ompetency A rea Competency Area Priority Training Items Knowledge Application Professionalism & Professional Development 0 6 Extension Organization & Administration 0 1 Program Planning & Development 1 9 Extension Teaching, Tools & Methods 0 8 Evaluation of Extension Programs 4 11 Information & Communication Technologies 0 5 Subject Matter Expertise 1 7 External Linkages 0 8 Table 4 37 . C ompetency Items w here Training is a P riority to Increase A pplication Upper Limit of the CI Combined with the AMWDS Competency Items Area AMWDS Rank Use TV to produce educational programs VI 8.31 1 Use the computer for distance/online education VI 8.31 1 Develop long term extension program plans, extending beyond 2 3 years III 7.63 3 Organize an effective program planning committee III 7.17 4 Establish criteria to judge the success or failure of a program V 6.99 5 Understand and solve complex problems VIII 6.95 6 Analyze findings from evaluation activities V 6.74 7 Understand how to use qualitative data gathering techniques, ex. case studies V 6.69 8 Understand the principles of program evaluation V 6.62 9 Understand the procedures for evaluating an extension program V 6.62 9 Interpret findings from evaluation activities V 6.55 11 Perform evaluation of extension programs on an annual basis V 6.50 12 Use radio to produce educational programs VI 6.41 13

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137 Table 4 37 . Continued Competency Items Area AMWDS Rank Communicate evaluation information to stakeholders (extens ion & ministry or department officials, farmers, agricultural organizations & other agencies V 6.33 14 Conduct research to provide unbiased solution to resolve the issue VII 6.22 15 Establish and manage demonstration plots IV 6.02 16 Understand ho w to use quantitative data gathering techniques, ex. survey questionnaires V 5.96 17 Maintain an advisory council for programming which represents the diversity of clientele VIII 5.95 18 Conduct result demonstrations IV 5.93 19 Translate needs assess ment information into general problem statement III 5.87 20 Ability to modify instructional approach to the audience VII 5.80 21 Collaborate with a diverse range of organizations for program development VIII 5.79 22 Provide research based information to the public I 5.79 23 Ability to implement an appropriate strategy to resolve the issue VII 5.63 23 Understand approaches for nurturing successful partnerships, collaborations, and networks VIII 5.63 25 Analyze situations to identify the need for educational and information technology VI 5.61 26 Promote the extension department to decision makers I 5.55 27 Use email to provide information to clientele VI 5.34 28 Identify opportunities for professional development I 5.31 29 Establish program ming priorities III 5.25 30 Monitor extension program activities and make necessary adjustments V 5.25 30 Develop instructional materials to be used for a teaching activity IV 5.20 32 Align program priorities at the local level with national prioriti es III 5.17 33

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138 Table 4 37 . Continued Competency Items Area AMWDS Rank Understand the principles of teaching and learning IV 5.15 34 Prepare reports using evaluation findings V 5.10 35 Develop short term program objectives III 5.05 36 Assess availab le local/community resources III 5.03 37 Consult professionals with knowledge and experience about planning educational activities III 4.97 38 Knowledge of the definitions and characteristics of partnerships, collaborations and networks VIII 4.93 39 knowledge base I 4.93 39 Collect instructional materials to be used for a teaching activity IV 4.93 39 Regularly review literature to stay current in the field VII 4.91 42 Promote the profession to others I 4.91 42 Familiar with local examples of partnerships, collaborations, and networks VIII 4.88 44 Know the names of community agencies and how they help or hinder your program VIII 4.88 45 Engage audience to promote high level of learning a nd involvement VII 4.83 46 Conduct on farm trials IV 4.79 47 Understand the culture of the district VIII 4.76 47 Ability to easily identify and define an issue VII 4.65 4 9 Develop measurable educational/teaching objectives to guide your teaching I V 4.64 50 Select appropriate teaching procedures to ensure IV 4.64 50 Understand the goals of the extension department II 4.63 52 Develop long term program objectives III 4.62 53 Use professional, technical publi cations to keep up to date and grow professionally I 4.59 54 Personal acquaintance with government minister under whose ministry your department falls VIII 4.50 55

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139 Table 4 38 . t t est Analysis of G ender n M SD SE t df d Variable: Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods Importance Gender Male 128 69.82 8.26 .73 2.09 184 0.34 Female 58 72.49 7.45 .98 Variable: Evaluation of Extension Programs Importance Gender Male 143 45.61 7.16 .60 2.31* 202 0.35 Female 6 1 48.15 7.23 .93 Variable: Information and Communication Technologies Importance Gender Male 141 44.81 8.83 .74 3.31* 202 0.53 Female 63 48.92 6.60 .83 Variable: Information and Communication Technologies Knowledge Gend er Male 141 42.71 8.22 .69 3.12* 201 0.48 Female 62 46.51 7.53 .96 Variable: Subject Matter Expertise Gender Male 146 39.29 5.22 .43 2.03* 206 0.31 Female 62 40.84 4.63 .59 Variable: External Linkages Impo rtance Gender Male 140 46.6 9 8.93 .76 2.34 199 0.37 Female 62 49.75 7.62 .97 Note. * p < .05

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140 Table 4 39 orrelation Coefficient of Year Born and Knowledge for Information and Communication Technologi es What year were you born ? Information and Communication Technologies Knowledge What year were you born ? Pearson Correlation 1 .28 ** Sig. (2 tailed) .00 N 210 197 Information and Communication Technologies Knowledge Pearson Correlation .28 * * 1 Sig. (2 tailed) .00 N 197 204 Note. **. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2 tailed). Table 4 40 ation Coefficient of Year B orn and Application for Information and Communication Technologies What yea r were you born ? Information and Communication Technologies Application What year were you born ? Pearson Correlation 1 .27 ** Sig. (2 tailed) .00 N 210 196 Information and Communication Technologies Application Pearson Correlation .27 ** 1 Sig . (2 tailed) .0 0 N 196 202 Note. **. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2 tailed).

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141 Table 4 4 1. Tests of Between Subjects E ffects. Professionalism and Professional Development Knowledge Source Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Squa re F Sig. Partial Eta Squared Corrected Model 1060.20a 5 212.04 2.57 .03 .06 Intercept 190729.32 1 190729.32 2307.71 .00 .92 Education 1060.20 5 212.04 2.57 .03 .06 Error 16199.15 196 82.65 Total 987695.00 202 Corrected Total 17259.35 201 Note. a. R Squared = .061 (Adjusted R Squared = .037) Table 4 4 2. Tests of Between Subjects E ffects. Extension Organization and Administration Importance Source Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. Partial Eta Squared Corrected Model 490.4 5a 5 98.09 3.72 .00 .07 Intercept 104335.62 1 104335.62 3952.92 .00 .94 Education 490.45 5 98.09 3.72 .00 .07 Error 6229.13 236 26.40 Total 606033.00 242 Corrected Total 6719.57 241 Note. a . R Squared = .0 73 (Adjusted R Squared = .0 53 ) Table 4 4 3. Tests of Between Subjects E ffects. Extension Organization and Administration Knowledge Source Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. Partial Eta Squared Corrected Model 479.77a 5 95.95 2.68 .02 .06 Intercept 90730.04 1 90730.04 253 7.93 .00 .92 Education 479.77 5 95.95 2.68 .02 .06 Error 8258.17 231 35.75 Total 531895.00 237 Corrected Total 8737.93 236 Note. a. R Squared = .055 (Adjusted R Squared = .034)

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142 Table 4 4 4. Tests of Between Subjects E ffects. Extension Orga nization and Administration Application Source Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. Partial Eta Squared Corrected Model 530.74a 5 106.15 3.04 .01 .06 Intercept 84092.49 1 84092.49 2408.27 .00 .91 Education 530.74 5 106.15 3.04 .01 .06 Error 7996.26 229 34.92 Total 501564.00 235 Corrected Total 8527.00 234 Note. a. R Squared = .062 (Adjusted R Squared = .042) Table 4 4 5. Tests of B etw een Subjects E ffects. Evaluation of Extension Programs Knowledge Source Type III Sum of Squ ares df Mean Square F Sig. Partial Eta Squared Corrected Model 656.14a 5 131.23 2.35 .04 .05 Intercept 67159.75 1 67159.75 1201.86 .00 .84 Education 656.14 5 131.23 2.35 .04 .05 Error 12796.48 229 55.88 Total 407013.00 235 Corrected Total 1345 2.62 234 Note. a. R Squared = .049 (Adjusted R Squared = .028) Table 4 4 6. Tests of Between Subjects E ffects. Information and Communication Technologies Knowledge Source Type III Sum of Squares df Mean Square F Sig. Partial Eta Squared Correcte d Model 1414.24a 5 282.85 4.79 .00 .09 Intercept 83339.59 1 83339.59 1410.30 .00 .86 Education 1414.24 5 282.85 4.79 .00 .09 Error 14005.17 237 59.09 Total 482354.00 243 Corrected Total 15419.42 242 Note. a. R Squared = .092 (Adjusted R Sq uared = .073)

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143 Table 4 47 lation Coefficient of Years of E xperience and Importance for Information and Communication Technologies Years of Experience Information and Communications Technology Importance Years of Experie nce Pearson Correlation 1 .2 9** Sig. (2 tailed) .0 0 N 214 201 Information and Communications Technology Importance Pearson Correlation .2 9** 1 Sig. (2 tailed) .0 0 N 201 205 Note. **. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2 tailed). Table 4 48 Experience and K nowledge for Information and Communication Technologies Years of Experience Information and Communication Technologies Knowledge Years of Experience Pearso n Correlation 1 .37 ** Sig. (2 tailed) .00 N 214 200 Information and Communication Technologies Knowledge Pearson Correlation .37 ** 1 Sig. (2 tailed) .0 0 N 200 204 Note. **. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2 tailed).

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144 Tab le 4 49 experience and application for Information and Communication Technologies Years of Experience Information and Communication Technologies Application Years of Experience Pearson C orrelation 1 .323** Sig. (2 tailed) .000 N 214 198 Information and Communication Technologies Application Pearson Correlation .323** 1 Sig. (2 tailed) .000 N 198 202 Note. **. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2 tailed). Tabl e 4 and Importance of External Linkages Years of Experience External Linkages Importance Years of Experience Pearson Correlation 1 .18 ** Sig. (2 tailed) .01 N 214 199 E xternal Linkages Importance Pearson Correlation .18 ** 1 Sig. (2 tailed) .01 N 199 202 Note. **. Correlation is significant at the 0.01 level (2 tailed).

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145 Figure 4 1 . Upper and lower confid ence interval (CI) and means for each competency area Importance . 3 3.5 4 4.5 Lower C.I. Upper C.I. Mean

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146 Figure 4 2 . Upper and lower confid ence interval (CI) and means for each competency area Knowledge . 3 3.5 4 4.5 Lower C.I. Upper C.I. Mean

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147 Figure 4 3 . Upper and lower confidence interval (CI) and means for each competency area Application . 3 3.5 4 4.5 Lower C.I. Upper C.I. Mean

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148 Figure 4 4 . Number of priority training items for application per competency area . 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 Number of priority training items for application per competency area

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149 Figure 4 5. Scatterplot of Year Born and Knowledge for Information and Communication Technologies competency area .

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150 Figure 4 6 . Scatterplot of year born and applicatio n for Information and Communication Technologies competency area .

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151 Figure 4 7 . Scatterplot of Years of experience and Importance for Information and Communication Technologies competency area .

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152 Figure 4 8 . Scatterplot of Years of experience and Knowledge for Information and Communication Technologies competency area .

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153 Figure 4 9 . Scatterplot of Years of experience and Application for Information and Communication Technologies competency area .

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154 Figure 4 10 . Scatterplot of Years of E xperi ence and i mportance for External Linkages competency area .

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155 CHAPTER 5 CONCLUSIONS, IMPLICATIONS, AND RECOMMENDATIONS This chapter provides a summary of the study, conclusions, implications, and recommendations based on the findings of extension officers in CARICOM perceived level of importance, knowledge, and application of selected competencies. Competency areas with a list of competency items will be presented as priority areas for training, along with a recommended competency framework. Summary of Study Extension has a role to play in the realization of outcomes of several key national and regional policies for the development of the agricultural sector across CARICOM. Cooper and Graham (2001) suggested extension must maintain a cadre of highly qualifie d extension professionals competent in delivery of programs to address the changing needs of the community in order to be relevant. The CAEP provided regular, annual trainings for extension officers in CARICOM for many years and was the vehicle many count ries relied on for the professional development of extension officers. With the exit of CAEP, a need currently exists for regular training to maintain highly competent extension officers to address the changing needs of CARICOM. A competency framework w ill be presented based on the findings of this study, which if adopted by CARICOM can be used as a guide for new hires, to determine professional trainings offered, used as a basis for performance evaluations, and guide the extension curricula of tertiary institutions in the region. The objectives of the st udy we re to: 1. , and applica tion for identified competency areas .

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156 2. Determine training needs for specific competencies based on gaps betwe en perceptions of importance and knowledge and gaps between knowledge and application in identified competencies and competency areas . 3. Determine if differences exist ed competency importance , knowledge, and applica tion based on gender and level of education and relationships that existed for age and length of employment, for each competency area . The competency areas included in the study were based on competencies most commonly identified as needed for effective pe rformance of duties by extension officers in competency studies conducted in various regions of the world. The first section of the survey asked extension officers to rate their perception of the importance, knowledge, and application of 102 competency it ems in eight competency areas (Professionalism and Professional Development; Extension Organization and Administration; Program Planning and Development; Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods; Evaluation of Extension Programs; Information and Communication Technologies; Subject Matter Expertise; and External Linkages). The Borich (1980) importance, knowledge, and application in the competency areas identified. Each competency item was measured on a five point scale with: 1 = Very Low Importance/Knowledge/Application ; 2 = Low Importance/Knowledge/Application ; 3 = Average Importance/Knowledge/Application ; 4 = High Importance/Knowledge/Application ; and 5 = Very High Importance/Knowledg e/Application . Section two of the survey covered demographic characteristics: gender, age, education, job experience, and country of employment. The survey instrument was reviewed by a panel of experts from the University of

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157 Florida, the University of th e West Indies, and senior extension professionals from five CARICOM countries. The target population was extension officers in 13 of the 15 CARICOM countries and five Associate Member States. Haiti and Suriname were not targeted due to the language barrie r. Fourteen extension systems in the region consented to participate in the study with completed surveys obtained from 12: Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Belize, Cayman Islands, Jamaica, Montserrat, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent an d The Grenadines, Trinidad, and Tobago. A census of all officers in the population ( N = 400) was attempted. The researcher collected the data in person in nine countries, and an Adobe Acrobat pdf version of the instrument was emailed to Jamaica, Belize, C ayman Islands, Bermuda (also received a copy by mail), and Turks and Caicos. Follow up visits were made to Belize and Jamaica to collect the completed instruments. A response rate of 55% was attained. Due to the wide variation in the number of responses per country, the data was weighted by relative nonresponse weights to improve the accuracy of the estimates. The data was analyzed using SPSS version 22. The conclusions drawn from the study will be presented by objectives. Conclusions and Implications The population of extension officers in CARICOM is predominantly male (69.3% or n = 150). The mean age of the officers in the region is 35.78 years with over 70% ( n = 151) of the officers between the ages of 20 39. The average length of employment was 9.87 years. This indicates the population is fairly young. CARICOM has been making an active push for youth involvement in agriculture in the region. This is possibly an outcome of that effort. There is a lack of upward mobility in extension in the

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158 reg ion; thus, other industries probably become more attractive to result in an exit of extension officers over time. According to Silvestri (1997), younger workers tend to engage in more on the job training; hence, providing such opportunities can be an ince ntive to stay with an employer. Hui and Smith ( 2002 ), suggested the age of the employee influences the type of human capital in which individuals invest. Younger employees tend to focus on general human capital and more seasoned employees work to acquir e specialized human capital. Although training in general human capital makes the employee more marketable to other companies it provides the foundation that is needed for the individual to be successful at the current firm. Therefore, training in the va rious competency areas for younger employees should vary from that of older and usually more seasoned employees. Approximately 90% of the extension officers in CARICOM hold an associate degree or higher, with an associate degree being held by 58.6% ( n = 127) of the officers. These findings are consistent with the overview of the qualifications of extension officers in the region presented by Ganpat and de Freitas (2010). Several CARICOM countries, for example, Antigua and Barbuda, Jamaica, and St. Vincen t and The Grenadines provide opportunities for employees to further their education by providing study leave after three to five consecutive years of employment. The employee receives a full salary or portion thereof during the period of study contingent upon (a) the employee studying a subject considered of benefit to the nation and (b) commit to working for the government for a certain period of time upon completion of studies. This type of investment in education is a means of increasing economic

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159 produ ctivity (Becker, 1993). If extension officers within the current system are taking advantage of the study or duty leave to further their education beyond an associate degree, then it is apparent that the more educated officers are seeking employment elsew here. Sankat (2013) in an overview of the agriculture graduates of the UWI, St. Augustine Campus, indicated only 27% are employed in agriculture related positions The program areas worked suggest extension officers in the region are generalists (Ganpat & de Freitas, 2010) conducting work primarily in Crops (89.9% or n = 195) or Livestock (62.1% or n = 135), with added responsibilities in multiple program areas. The effectivene ss of extension officers with such broad responsibilities can be affected as the officers may want to focus on knowing a little bit of everything, instead of focusing on depth of knowledge and application. According to Gibson and Hillison (1994), the NCCE system realized the problems faced by extension clientele are complex and it presents a problem for generalist extension agents to keep abreast in technological advancements in all program areas of responsibility. Thus, NCCE introduced specialized extens ion agents to increase proficiency of the agents, the quality of service provided to clientele, and to lessen the workload and frustration of generalist agents. CARICOM should examine its most critical areas of need within the extension system and determi ne if the assignment of specialized extension officers would be appropriate. Objective O ne: Exte ev el of Importance, Knowledge and A pplicat ion for Identified C ompetenc y Areas The means of each competency area showed extension offi cers in CARICOM perceived Extension Organization and Administration to be the most important

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160 competency area. This was also the competency area they perceived themselves to be most knowledgeable and most proficient in application. This implies the extens ion officers have a good understanding of the organizational structure, mission and policies of the department; the duties of his/her position; and required reporting associated with the job. This is the least client centered of the competency areas; howe ver, a significant portion of their performance evaluation hinges on several of the competency items within this competency area , such as Compile periodic reports of extension activities, Attend staff meetings, and Following established administrative proc edures . Thus, officers probably invest a significant amount of time to ensuring they become versed in this area in order to receive performance ratings that meets or exceeds expectations. The External Linkages competency area received the lowest mean scor es for importance, knowledge, and application. Extension in the region is becoming more pluralistic. Therefore, it is essential for extension officers in CARICOM to learn how to network with other government agencies, non governmental organizations, and industry to source untapped expertise to boost the quality of programs delivered. Campbell tency in External Linkages is also crucial to communicating the impact of extension programs to stakeholders, including government ministers, in order to maintain funding. Information and Communication Technologies was perceived to be of above average impo rtance. However, its mean was second to last among the competency

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161 ranked higher for several reasons: (a) responsibilities related to ICTs are assigned to a communications un it within the extension department in some countries; (b) technology is being utilized more for personal benefits r ather than work (Strong et al., 2012) ; and (c) lack of ICT resources provided in some countries . With the rapid change in technology it is i mperative extension officers understand the value of utilizing ICTs in the delivery of extension programs. Radio , for example, would be an excellent avenue to explore for program delivery in and between countries as some radio frequencies reach multiple co untries. For example, Radio ZDK in Antigua and Barbuda can be heard throughout the Eastern Caribb ean and broadcasts live on the W eb. A partnership with a radio station, such as ZDK, to offer educational programs to clientele would increase coverage and l ends itself to regular cross national sharing of expertise. Objective two: T raining Needs for Specific Competencies Based on Gaps Between Perceptions of Importance and Knowledge and Gaps Between Knowledge and Application in Identified C ompetencies The KMWD S and the AMWDS were calculated to determine between knowledge and application as areas where training is needed. The KMWDS and AMWDS were positive for 100% ( n = 102) of the competency items in all eight competency areas. Thus, it would be appropriate fo r Extension in CARICOM to offer training to increase knowledge and application for all competency items. The researcher however, recommends the list be shortened to prioritize training for competency items with KMWDS and AMWDS of two and above. Confidenc e intervals were used to determine the proximity of the scores to 2.0. The researcher did not find any recommended standard score to be used for prioritizing training needs. Overall, extension officers perceived themselves to be more competent with regar ds to knowledge, but encounter ed difficulty in application or ability to use a competency. Melak and Negatu

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162 (2012) indicated that although an extension professional may be knowledgeable it is imperative for the individual to be able to apply the knowledge Knowledge With regards to knowledge, six competency items should be given priority for training. The Subject Matter competency item of Understand and solve complex problems was at the top of the list. As issues faced by extension become more complex, staff must develop competencies that will enable the organization to maintain its relevance and ability to deliver quality extension programs (Stone & Beiber, 1997). S pecific on the job training as recommended by Becker (1993) related to building critical thinking skills, would be useful in addressing this need by program or subject area. Formal training to increase the level of education would also be an asset. Four E valuation of Extension Programs competency items were among the top six areas where training should be a priority to increase knowledge: (a) Perform evaluation of extension programs on an annual basis; (b) Establish criteria to judge success or failure of a program; (c) Understand procedures for evaluating an extension program ; and (d) Communicate evaluation information to stakeholders (extension and ministry or department officials, farmers, agricultural organizations and other agencies) . Multiple compete ncy studies have indicated Evaluation of Extension Programs as an area where extension officers show little proficiency (Harder et al., 2012 study in Belize; Harder et al., 2013 study in Belize, Grenada and St. Lucia ) . Also, Lamm, Israel, and Diehl (2013) conducted a study to assess the evaluation activities of extension officers in the U.S. and found lack expertise to perform evaluation behaviors that measure long term change or conduct advanced inferential

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163 statistics ( p. 5 ) of their extension programs. an extension agent in the Florida Extension System evaluation is a highly specialized area in which many extension agents encounter difficulty. Thus, this is a competency area which will require multiple reiterations of training before an extension officer could say with confidence he/she is proficient. Proficiency in program evaluation is critical to assessing the success of a program, to show impacts and also to determine specific changes to be made if the program is offered again. This ultimately helps to increase the quality of programs delivered by extension officers. In the competency area of Program Planning and Development, Develop long term extension program plans, extendin g beyond 2 3 years is a competency item where training is needed to improve knowledge. Similarly, Harder et al. (2012) identified proficiency in the area of program planning as an area where agents in Belize lacked proficiency. Program planning expecte d for extension officers appear s to be more focused on the short term. Seeking the input of clientele at the region/district level would allow extension officers to develop programs targeted to the problems in the district with timelines for implementatio n. This coupled with proper evaluation methods will allow the extension officer to modify or make changes to ongoing programs; thereby , building stronger programs. For young officers who enter the system with the intention of an exemplary life time caree r in extension, proficiency in long term program planning is a must. Application All competency items in the Evaluation of Extension Programs competency area were identified as priorities for training to enhance proficiency in application for Extension Of ficers in CARICOM. This comprised 20% of the training items that were

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164 identified as priorities. Competency studies conducted by Al Zahrani (1992) in Saudi Arabia; Harder et al. (2012) in Belize; Harder et al., (2013); and Karbasioun et al., (2007) found a priority. Rodgers et al. (2012) stated extension professionals are often trained in an area other than evaluation. However, extension professionals involved in programming shou outcomes and impacts of community The current and prior research seems to indicate t he across the board expectation of all exte nsion officers developing proficiency in evaluation has been unsuccessful. Therefore, extension systems in CARICOM should take a different approach and identify at least one individual per country to develop expertise in evaluation who can assist extensio n officers in conducting quality program evaluation s . Competency items in the area of Program Planning and Development accounted for 16% of the items that were identified as priorities for training. This was also identified as a need by Adesiji (2006) a nd Harder et al. (2013). The success of an extension program relies heavily on program planning and development and evaluation; thus, these two competency areas should be needs that are addressed swiftly. Surprisingly, two thirds of the Subject Matter com petency items were training priorities for application. This is an indication that although extension officers perceived themselves to be knowledgeable they lack the proficiency in application. Lakai (2010) found subject matter to be the competency area where extension agents were most proficient. Clientele usually make contact with extension for its knowledge and practical application of subject matter to address a specific need. With Internet penetration in the

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165 Caribbean at 29%, just four percentage p oints below the world average, (Internet World Stats, 2012); the Internet could quickly become a preferred source of information for clientele, presenting a threat to the relevance of public extension within CARICOM. Therefore, the need exists for CARICOM to provide regular trainings for extension officers to keep them up to date on relevant subject matter with special emphasis on techniques in application. The provision of higher education with an integrated practical , extension methods component is anot her means of reducing the threat of irrelevance. This will provide valuable exposure to extension prior to employment and the opportunity to put their knowledge to work. Tladi (2004) recommended extension systems conduct a comprehensive needs assessment i n order to determine the professional development needs of extension agents. Melak and Negatu (2012) posited on the job training is needed to build or increase proficiency and remain current in competencies initially attained through college education, pre ferably beyond an associate degree or diploma. Although the workforce in the region is fairly young, the rapid changes in technology easily outdate information that was relevant ten years ago. Thus, purposeful on the job training is needed to build human capital in extension to maintain a competitive advantage (Almeida & Cho, 2012). This research has shown that an investment in human capital in CARICOM is necessary to increase the proficiency of extension officers. This means individual countries and or CARICOM should set aside funds to provide regular training opportunities for extension officers in the region. The study has identified the skills gap as recommended by Ogunade (2011) to determine the training areas to be targeted. A

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166 combination of form al education and on the job training should be utilized in an effort to increase extension officer proficiency and productivity. Along with an investment in human capital is the need for CARICOM to consider adoption of the competencies used in this study . The competencies and associated description and performance standards or behaviors should be clearly articulated and communicated to extension professionals. The competencies should also be publicly available , such as on country and or regional extensio n websites for review by existing extension professionals and for new recruits to see performance measures for success within the organization (McClelland, 1973) . The ultimate end goal of the investment in human capital and the adoption of competencies is a well respected extension system at the national and regional level that is making a positive impact on the economic growth of the agriculture sector in the region. The assumptions of the McClelland (1998) competency approach were: (a) performance measur es should be discernible, (b) benchmarks for success should relate to life outcomes, (c) competencies should be clearly described in relation to life events, and (d) procedure for improving competencies should be made public. CARICOM Extension currently d oes not fully meet any of these assumptions. A few competency items are clearly identified which do relate to life events and these are used as the basis for performance measures. The recommendations made by Harder et al. (2010) are also applicable in th is situation for the assumptions of the competency approach to be fully met. Adoption of the competencies by extension systems in CARICOM, with clearly defined, and expected achievable outcomes which are communicated to potential and existing extension of ficers will be needed for successful implementation.

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167 Objective three: Determine if differences exist ed perceptions of competency importance , knowledge, and application based on gender and level of education and relationships th at existed for age and length of employment, for each competency area . Gender Significant differences were observed for males and females in their perceptions of importance in: (a) Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods; (b) Subject Matter Expertise; (c) Ex ternal Linkages; (d) Evaluation of Extension Programs; and (e) Information and Communication Technologies. Significant differences were also observed in their perceptions of knowledge of Information and Communication Technologies. Females had higher mean scores than males in all instances. The literature reviewed for this study did not reveal any significant differences in previous research for competency areas and gender. Although the differences were not significant across the board for importance, k nowledge and application in all competency areas, the results are an indication female extension officers in CARICOM view their work as important and their level of knowledge and application are on par with their male counterparts. Year Born Lakai (2010) f ound competency levels for North Carolina Extension Agents increased with age. The opposite was true in this case for Information and Communication Technologies. A positive correlation existed between the year extension officers were born and their perce ptions of knowledge and application of Information and Communication Technologies. As the year born increased (younger officers) the perception of knowledge and application of Information and Communication Technologies increased.

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168 This indicates younger of ficers are technologically inclined and this interest in technology should be fostered to allow for its integration into extension activities. At a minimum , extension organizations within CARICOM should provide each officer with a computer and internet ac cess. Internet connectivity will provide additional opportunities for communication among officer s and clientele between field visits to share for example, emails and photos on issues of concern to the client. Access to technology will also increase the ability of officers to gain easy access to specialists at a regional and or international level to help solve difficult problems or exchange information, such as use of the Caribbean Plant Diagnostic Network; and participate in distance education activitie s . Education The level of education did not influence extension officers perceptions on the importance, knowledge, and application of (a) Program Planning and Development; (b) Extension Teaching, Tools and Methods; (c) Subject Matter Expertise; and (d) Ex ternal Linkages. In the area of Professionalism and Professional Development, Extension associate degree with a higher mean score for knowledge. Significant differences exi sted in the high school diploma holders and those with associate degrees on perceptions of importance of Extension Organization and Administration. Extension officers with high school diplomas rated it as more important. Signific ant differences also exis ted degree, with the former having a higher perception of importance. E xtension officers with a high school diploma recorded higher means in a few competency areas on their perceptions of importance, knowledge , and application .

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169 Although not all significantly different from the higher levels of education, it may be an indication their assessment was made based on the skills equivalent to their level of education and not the standards of a more qualified , high performing extension officer. The level of education did not have a significant difference on extension officer s perceptions of the importance or application of Evaluation of Extension Programs. However, significant differences were observed between extension officers with a degree with those with Although significant differences were only observed in the mentioned ar eas for evaluation the general trend was an increase in mean scores with higher levels of education. This implies the added investment in human capital through formal and or on the job education increased the level of knowledge and ability of the extensio to evaluate extension programs. There were no significant differences in the level of education and extension Communication Technologies. Significant differences existe perceptions of their knowledge on Information and Communication Technologies at the associate degree and the scores than the extension officers with associate degrees. Extension systems in CARICOM should make a concerted effort to increase knowledge in Information and Communication Technologies at all educational levels. As internet penetration in the region c ontinues to rise, extension could possibly explore the delivery of educational programs for farmers and professional development opportunities for extension professionals by distance

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1 70 education. This will allow for sharing of expertise at the country, regi onal, and or international level. The significant differences observed between level of education and the various competency areas were consistent with the findings of Khan et al, (2008) which showed significant differences existed for various competency a reas and level of education. An associate degree is the standard entry level requirement for extension in the region. The findings showed that there is an added increase in competency beyond the associate degree level. The level of proficiency of exten sion officers in CARICOM can be improved through providing opportunities for advancement in education beyond the associate degree . This must be coupled with incentives to stay in the extension, such as attractive salaries and opportunities to grow profe ssionally. Years of e xperience Lakai (2010) found levels of competency increased with years of experience. This was not the case in this study. The results showed there is a negative correlation erceptions of the importance, knowledge, and application of Information and Communication Technologies. Higher perceptions of importance, knowledge, and application were associated with extension officers with fewer years of experience and lower perceptio ns of importance, knowledge and application of Information and Communication Technologies for extension officers with more years of experience. Extension in CARICOM should consider capitalizing on the competency of the younger officers in the area of Info rmation and Communication Technologies by providing opportunities to mentor the officers with more years of e xperience. The younger officers may be able to show more experienced officers how to integrate technology into existing programs to improve effici ency and effectiveness,

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171 and expand reach to a wider audience through websites such as Facebook and YouTube. A similar negative correlation existed for external linkages. A possible reason is that younger officers are trying to become established in the community and build a career, so external linkages are seen as a source of knowledge. The more experience officers may have well established external linkages, but because they are so seasoned in their positions , begin to give external linkages less impor tance. Recommendations for Practice The use of competencies in Extension in CARICOM is very limited. The purpose of this study was to determine the competencies and professional development needs of extension officers in CARICOM based on their perceptions of importance, knowledge , and application of selected competencies. This research provides baseline data and a competency framework which is recommended for endorsement by the CARICOM Secretariat, local extension systems and public service commissions fo r adoption, as a measure for improving extension in the region. The following recommendations for practice are put forth by the researcher in the proposed competency framework ( see Figure 5 1). The proposed competency framework consists of the eight compe tency areas and accompanying competency items used in the study: Professionalism and Professional Development; Extension Organization and Administration; Program Planning and Development; Extension Teaching Tools and Methods; Evaluation of Extension Progra ms; Information and Communication Technologies; Subject Matter Expertise; and External Linkages. Each extension system within CARICOM should consider adopting the use of competencies using those provided as the job/role

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172 competencies to be acquired by each extension officer ( Competencies for Current Staff ). These can be used for decisions pertaining to hiring (presented to the local public service commission Competencies for New Hires ), performance evaluations , possible pay increases, and providing diffe rential professional development opportunities to increase the proficiency of exte nsion officers. The researcher recommends CARICOM and National Extension Systems clearly communicate the competency standards and associated descriptors to all employees. Al though most extension systems do not play a role in the recruiting/hiring of new employees, extension systems should communicate the minimum competency expectations for new hires to the local public service commission or other hiring agency. Development of human capital is essential for CARICOM and local governments in the region to build the agricultural sector. CARICOM, CAEPNet, FAO, IICA and other institutions in the region should collaborate to identify a Central Training Agency with responsibility for providing on going or annual regional trainings to address the priority training needs identified in this research. This agency could be funded by the CARICOM Secretariat, local, regional, and or international organizations. The tertiary institutions in the region along with high performing, experienced extension officers could assist in providing the necessary professional development training. The findings of this research are recommended for consideration and adoption into the agriculture curriculum of Tertiary Institutions in the region. The tertiary institutions should use the new competencies to modify existing curricula or implement new extension course offerings. An extension internship is recommended for students interested in pursuing a care er in extension. A possible starting point is presentation of

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173 research findings to the Board of Directors of the Caribbean Council for Higher Education in Agriculture (CACHE), a non fostering human resource dev elopment for sustainable transformation of agriculture in consists of representatives from several tertiary, agricultural institutions in the region. Thus, it would be an av enue to generate discussion for region wide adoption by participating institutions. The implementation of the proposed framework may result in the selection of extension staff more knowledgeable of their proposed career path. The provision of regular in service opportunities that addresses both the increase in knowledge and most importantly , the application of that knowledge , may result in a team of highly efficient and effective extension personnel. The ultimate goal is the improved livelihoods of the farmers and families served and the increase in the economic contribution of the agricultural sector to the national economy. Recommendations for Future Research The following recommendations are made for future competency research in CARICOM: 1. A survey con ducted to determine the preferred delivery method(s) and the amount of time extension officers are willing to devote to participating in service trainings. 2. Survey extension supervisors in the region using the instrument from this research to gain their per knowledge and application of each competency. 3. An assessment of the competencies of extension officers in the region be conducted every three to five years to determine the level of compete ncy of current extension staff to ensure training is targeting priority areas of need. Ogunade (2011) indicated training programs are more successful if periodic training needs assessment are conducted to ensure appropriate topics and delivery methods are selected.

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174 4. Follow up studies conducted to determine which extension systems in the region are utilizing the recommended competency framework in making human resource decisions, and an assessment of its usefulness. 5. perspective to gain their perceptions on the competence of extension officers. 6. A study to evaluate the effectiveness of different professional development methods. The Borich model may not have been the most useful method for assessing the competency need s of Extension officers in CARICOM. It is commonly used In the United States where extension agents are continually receiving training and high performing officers are recognized for their work, and also replicated in other regions. The question then com es to mind: what are the standards by which officers rated their perception of importance, knowledge, and application of the competencies since a recognition system did not exist since CAEP. Consequently, a mixed methods study may have been more ideal to determine the underlying issues that caused some of the results observed. For example, the lack of proficiency of officers with 26 to 30 years of experience and application of subject matter being an area being an area where much training is needed. A q ualitative component to the study would have been useful in gaining such information. competency area were reliable. However, it would be interesting to see if the removal of (a ) ability to modify instructional approach to the audience and (b) Engaging audience to promote high level of learning and involvement; which could also fall under Extension Teaching Tools and Methods, would have yielded the same results.

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175 *Limited knowledge required Figure 5 1 . CARICOM Extension Competency Framewor k . Channel competency requirements to Public Service Commission Competencies for New Hires Primarily Knowledge Professionalism & Professional Development Extension Organization & Administration* Program Planning & Development Extension Teaching, Tools & Methods Evaluation of Extension Programs Information & Communication Technologies Subject Matter Expertise External Linkages* Competencies for Current Staff (ordered by need) Knowledge & Application Evaluation of Extension Programs External Linkages Subject Matter Expertise Program Planning & Development Extension Teaching, Tools & Methods Information & Communication Technologies Professionalism & Professional Development Extensio n Organization & Admi nistration CARICOM & National Extension Systems Adopt and Communicate competency standards Performance Evaluation Central Training Agency Coordinate in service Funding CARICOM/Local/ Regional/International Organizations Tertiary Institutions Extension Curricula Internships In service Tra ining

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176 APPENDIX SURVEY INSTRUMENT ID: _______ Protocol Title: An Examination of the Competencies and Professional Development Needs of Extension Officers in the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) The purpose of this study is to develop a competency model and determine professional development needs for extension officers in CARICOM and its Associate Member Territories. Competencies are the collective sets of skil ls, knowledge, attitudes, and behaviors required for effective job performance. For each competency listed, you will be asked to identify: its level of importance how necessary is the competency for performing your job well? your level of knowledge ho w much do you know about the competency? your level of application how skilled are you in the use of the competency? The findings of this study will identify the competencies extension officers in CARICOM deem as important to effectively perform their d uties, and their perceived knowledge and application of these competencies. This information will form the basis of the competency model and will identify priority areas for professional development. Extension administration in the region will receive thes e findings so they may develop plans to address the needs identified. General Instructions 1. Please complete all parts of the survey instrument. 2. Please read each statement and rate your level of competency based on importance, knowledge, and application usi ng the Likert scale provided. 3. There is no right or wrong answer to the questions. Please give your honest opinion on each. Your responses should reflect your own feelings and beliefs. 4. Please keep in mind that some of the items may appear repetitive. T his is purposeful in order to look at certain variables independently. 5. Your responses will be kept confidential. Participants will not be identified individually and responses will be assembled as group data. 6. Results of the survey will be shared with pa rticipants interested in the outcome.

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177 SECTION I: COMPETENCIES Competency Area I Professionalism and Professional Development Professionalism and professional development means maintaining a high code of ethics and seeking opportunities to stay up t o date in relevant field. Scale: 1 = Very low importance 1 = Very low knowledge 1 = Very low application 2 = Low importance 2 = Low knowledge 2 = Low application 3 = Average importance 3 = Average knowledge 3 = Average application 4 = High importance 4 = High knowledge 4 = High application 5 = Very high importance 5 = Very high knowledge 5 = Very high application Competency Importance Knowledge Application 1. Demonstrate attributes of a positive role model 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 2. Maintain high ethical standards 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 3. Is accountable for actions 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 4. Accept responsibility for actions 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 5. Apply best practices to all aspect s of work 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 6. Contribute to the knowledge base of extension department 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 7. Provide research based information to the public 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 8. Collaborate with other professionals 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 9. Seek professional affiliations that will 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 10. Promote the profession to others 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 11. Is a catalyst for response to community needs 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 12. Promote the extension department to decision makers 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 13. Identify opportunities for professional development 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 14. Attend relevant in service training available to you 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 15. Self evaluate strengths and weaknesses as an extension officer 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 16. Use professional, technical publications to keep up to date and grow professionally 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 17. Share information with colleagues 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5

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178 Competency Area II Extension Organization and Administration Extension organization and administration refers to your understanding of the organization and overall management of t he duties of your position. Scale: 1 = Very low importance 1 = Very low knowledge 1 = Very low application 2 = Low importance 2 = Low knowledge 2 = Low application 3 = Average importance 3 = Average knowledge 3 = Average application 4 = High importance 4 = High knowledge 4 = High application 5 = Very high importance 5 = Very high knowledge 5 = Very high application Competency Importance Knowledge Application 1. Understand the overall organizational structure of the exten sion department 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 2. Understand the mission of the extension department 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 3. Understand the policies of the extension department 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 4. Understand th e goals of the extension department 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 5. Understand the duties of your position 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 6. Establish working relationships with other extension staff 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 7. Follow established administra tive procedures 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 8. Compile periodic reports of extension activities (weekly, biweekly, monthly, quarterly, annually) 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 9. Write accurate reports 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 10. Attend sta ff meetings 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 11. Manage time effectively 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5

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179 Competency Area III Program Planning and Development Program planning and development refers to the strategies or tools used to develop your extensio n program. Scale: 1 = Very low importance 1 = Very low knowledge 1 = Very low application 2 = Low importance 2 = Low knowledge 2 = Low application 3 = Average importance 3 = Average knowledge 3 = Average application 4 = High importance 4 = High knowledge 4 = High application 5 = Very high importance 5 = Very high knowledge 5 = Very high application Competency Importance Knowledge Application 1. Collect and use information about your district/region 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 2. Condu ct a need or problem assessment of your assigned extension district/region 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 3. Conduct interviews to obtain information for planning process 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 4. Consult professio nals with knowledge and experience about planning educational activities 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 5. Assess available local/community resources 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 6. Develop long ter m extension program plans (extending beyond 2 3 years) 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 7. Develop an annual program of work 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 8. Develop weekly work schedule 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 9. Develop monthly work schedule 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 10. Develop short term program objectives 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 11. Develop long term program objectives 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 12. Translate needs assessment information into general problem statement 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 13. Establish programming priorities 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 14. Align program priorities at the local level with national priorities 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 15. Organize an effective program planning committe e 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5

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180 Competency Area IV Extension Teaching, Tools & Methods Extension teaching, tools and methods are the means used to deliver content to clientele. Scale: 1 = Very low importance 1 = Very low knowledge 1 = Very l ow application 2 = Low importance 2 = Low knowledge 2 = Low application 3 = Average importance 3 = Average knowledge 3 = Average application 4 = High importance 4 = High knowledge 4 = High application 5 = Very high importance 5 = Very high knowledge 5 = Very high application Competency Importance Knowledge Application 1. Develop measurable educational/teaching objectives to guide your teaching 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 2. Develop instructional materials to be used for a teaching activity 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 3. Collect instructional materials to be used for a teaching activity 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 4. Understand the principles of teaching and learning 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 5. Select appropriate teaching procedures subject 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 6. Explain technical terms to clientele in simple language 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 7. Teach with PowerPoin t presentations 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 8. Teach with overhead slide projector 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 9. Lecture 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 10. Conduct workshops 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 11. Conduct field days 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 12. Establish and manage demonstration plots 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 13. Conduct individual farm visits 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 14. Facilitate group discussion 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 15. Conduct on farm trials 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 16. Cond uct result demonstrations 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5

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181 Competency Area V Evaluation of Extension Programs Evaluation of extension programs refers to the measures used to document outcomes and impacts as a means of accountability/program success. Sca le: 1 = Very low importance 1 = Very low knowledge 1 = Very low application 2 = Low importance 2 = Low knowledge 2 = Low application 3 = Average importance 3 = Average knowledge 3 = Average application 4 = High importance 4 = High knowledge 4 = High application 5 = Very high importance 5 = Very high knowledge 5 = Very high application Competency Importance Knowledge Application 1. Understand the principles of program evaluation 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 2. Understa nd the procedures for evaluating an extension program 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 3. Understand how to use quantitative data gathering techniques (ex. survey questionnaires) 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 4. Under stand how to use qualitative data gathering techniques (ex. case studies) 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 5. Establish criteria for judging the success or failure of a program 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 6. Monitor extension program activities a nd make necessary adjustments 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 7. Analyze findings from evaluation activities 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 8. Interpret findings from evaluation activities 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 9. Perform evaluation of extens ion programs on an annual basis 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 10. Prepare reports using evaluation findings 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 11. Communicate evaluation information to stakeholders (extension & ministry or department officials, farmers, agricultural organizations & other agencies) 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5

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182 Competency Area VI Information and Communication Technologies Information and communication technologies refer to your knowledge of current technology and how they are utilized to reach mass audiences. Scale: 1 = Very low importance 1 = Very low knowledge 1 = Very low application 2 = Low importance 2 = Low knowledge 2 = Low application 3 = Average importance 3 = Average knowledge 3 = Average application 4 = High importance 4 = High knowledge 4 = High application 5 = Very high importance 5 = Very high knowledge 5 = Very high application Competency Importance Knowledge Application 1. Analyze situations to identify the n eed for educational and information technology 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 2. Use email to provide information to clientele 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 3. Use mobile phone to provide information to clientele 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 4. U se the computer as a source of information when preparing training materials 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 5. Use the computer to conduct administrative tasks. 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 6. Use the computer when communicating with supervisors and colleagues 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 7. Use the internet to enhance personal knowledge 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 8. Use audio/visual materials and techniques with clientele 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 9. Use TV to produce educati onal programs 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 10. Use radio to produce educational programs 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 11. Use the computer for distance/online education 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5

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183 Competency Area VII Subject Matter Expertise Subje ct Matter Expertise refers to the technical knowledge and skills possessed to perform tasks related to a specific field(s), for example, agronomy. Scale: 1 = Very low importance 1 = Very low knowledge 1 = Very low application 2 = Low importance 2 = Low knowledge 2 = Low application 3 = Average importance 3 = Average knowledge 3 = Average application 4 = High importance 4 = High knowledge 4 = High application 5 = Very high importance 5 = Very high knowledge 5 = Very high application Competency Importance Knowledge Application 1. Knowledgeable in subject area of responsibility 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 2. Regularly review literature to stay current in the field 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 3. Ability to easily identify and define an issue 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 4. Ability to implement an appropriate strategy to resolve the issue 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 5. Conduct research to provide unbiased solution to the issue 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 6. Ability to explain technical information in simple terms 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 7. Ability to modify instructional approach to the audience 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 8. Engaging audience to promote high level of learning and involv ement 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 9. Understand and solve complex problems 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5

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184 Competency Area VIII External Linkages External linkages refer to collaborations with other governmental agencies, non govern mental organizations and industry. Scale: 1 = Very low importance 1 = Very low knowledge 1 = Very low application 2 = Low importance 2 = Low knowledge 2 = Low application 3 = Average importance 3 = Average knowledge 3 = Average a pplication 4 = High importance 4 = High knowledge 4 = High application 5 = Very high importance 5 = Very high knowledge 5 = Very high application Competency Importance Knowledge Application 1. districts , and party affiliations 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 2. Personal acquaintance with government minister under whose ministry your department falls 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 3. Maintain regular communication with the ministe r about your program 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 4. Understand the culture of the district 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 5. Ability to briefly articulate what extension is and who we serve 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 6. Ability to briefly articulate the key impacts of your extension program 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 7. Knowledge of the definitions and characteristics of partnerships, collaborations, and networks 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 8. Familiar with local examples of partnerships, collaborations, and networks 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 9. Understand approaches for nurturing successful partnerships, collaborations, and networks 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 10. Know the names of community agencies and how they help or hinder your program 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 11. Collaborate with a diverse range of organizations for program development 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 12. Maintain an advisory council for programming which represents the diversity of clientele 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5 1 2 3 4 5

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185 SECTION II: DEMOGRAPHICS AND BAC KGROUND INFORMATION These demographic questions are asked for statistical purposes o nly. 1. In which country do you currently work? Anguilla Jamaica Antigua and Barbuda Montserrat Barbados St. Kitts and Nevis Belize St. Lucia Bermuda St. Vincent and The Grenadines Cayman Islands Trinidad and Tobago Turks and Caicos Islands 2. How many years have you been an extension officer in this country? Years 3. What is your program area? Select all that apply by marking the appropriate box(es) with an X . 4 H Youth Development Crops Fi sheries Forestry Ornamentals Livestock Marketing Nutrition (Human) Other (If any) _____________________________

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186 4. What is your highest level of education? Secondary/High School Diploma/Associate Degree Bachelors Masters Ph.D. Other ________________________ 5. What is your gender? Male Female 7. What year were you born? Please take a few minutes to review the questionnaire to see if you answered all the items.

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187 An Equal Opportunity Institution Thank you for completing this survey. Please use this area to provide any additional information you w ould like to share.

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188 LIST OF REFEREN CES Adesiji, G.B. (2006). Competency needed by village exten sion agents of the Osun State agricultural development programme Nigeria. Agrosearch, 8 (1), 93 101. Retrieved from http://www.unilorin.edu.ng/publications/adesiji/Competency_ needed_ by_village _ extension_agents.pdf Alibayg i, A. & Zarafshani, K. (2008). Training needs of I ranian extension agents about African Journal of Agricultural Research , 3(10), 681 687. Retrieved from http://www. academic journals. org/ajar/pdf/pdf%202008/Oct/Alibaygi%20and%20Zarafshani.pdf Almeida, R. & Cho, Y. (2012). Employer provided training : Patterns and incentives for building skills for higher productivity. In Almeida, R. , Behrman, J., & Robalino, D. (Eds .), The right skills for the job: Rethinking policies for workers (pp. 105 132). Washington, D.C.: The World Bank Almendarez, L. (2011). Human capital theory: Implications for educational development. Belize Country Con ference 2010. Retrieved from h ttp://www.cavehill.uwi.edu/BNCCde/belize/conference/paperdex.html Al Zahrani, K.H. (1992). An analysis of the competencies n eeded by extension workers in the southern province of Saudi Arabia. Journal of King Saud University Agricultural Sciences , 4(2 ), 159 171. Retrieved from: http://repository.ksu.edu. sa/jspui/handle/123456789/376 Athey , T.R. & Orth, M.S. ( 1999 ). Emerging compet ency methods for the future. Journal of Human Resource management , 38(3), 215 226. Awang, A.R. (1992 ). An assessment o f field level exten sion agent inservice training needs related to the educational process as percei ved by extension personnel in the Sabah State Department of Agriculture, Malaysia . Retrieved from ProQuest Dissertation and Theses. (Order No. 9311474) A zmi, I.A.G. (2010). Competency based human resource practices in Malaysian public sector organizations. African Journal of Business Management , 4(2), 235 441. Becker, G.S. (1993 ). Human Capital: A theoretical and empirical analysis with special referenc e to education (3 rd edition). University of Chicago Press. Becker, L. (2000). Effect size calculator. University of Colorado, Colorado Springs. Retrieved from http://www.uccs.edu/~lbecker/ Bethlehem, J. (2008). Weighting. In P. Lavrakas (Ed.), En cyc lopedia of survey research methods. (pp. 958 961). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc. doi: http://dx.doi.org.lp.hscl.ufl.edu/10.4135/9781412963947.n632

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189 Blundell, R., Dea rden, L., Meghir, C., & Sianesi, B. (1999). Human capital investment: The returns from education and training to the individual, the firm and the economy. Fiscal Studies , 20(1), pp. 1 23 . Borich, G. (1980). A needs assessment model for conducting fol low up studies. Journal of Teacher Education 31(3), 39 42. Bourne, C. (2008 , July ). Perspectives on enhancing sustaina ble growth and development of Caribbean Agriculture : Keynote Address by Professor Compton Bourne, O.E. President, Caribbean D evelopment Bank, at the forty fourth annual meeting of the Caribbean Food Crops Society, Miami, Florida. Brodeur, C., Higgins, C., Galindo Gonzalez, S. Craig D.D., & H aile, T. (2011). Designing a competency based new coun ty extension personnel training program: A nove l approach. Journal of Extensi on , 49(3). Retrieved from: http://www.joe.org/joe/2011june/a2.php Brown, A.S., Gibson, J.D., & Stewart, D.L. (2008 ). Cooperative Journal of Extensi on. Retrieved from http://www.joe.org/joe/2008august/a7.php Byham, W.C. & Moyer, P.R. (2005). Using Competencies to bui ld a successful organization . Development Dimensions International. Retrieved from: http://onpointcoaching. typepad.com/files/using_co mpetancies_to_build_org.pdf Campbell, D.A.C. (1999). Managing public sector extension organiz ations: Some critical issues. Journal of International Agricultural and Extension Education , 6(2), 55 59. Retrieved from: http://www.aiaee.org/attachments/339 _Campbell Vol 6.27 .pdf Campbell, D. A.C, & Henderson, T.H. (1996). Agricu lt ural Extension in the Eastern Caribbean: Some lessons learnt. Farm an d Business The Journal of The Caribbean Agro Economic Society . Retrieved from http://econpapers. repec.o rg/article/agsfabtho/45594.htm Campbell, D. & Saska, G. (1994). Caribbean Agricultural Exte nsion: A supervisory manual. University of the West Indies, St. Augustine, Trinidad. Caribbean Cantwell, P. (2008). Census. In P. Lavrakas (Ed.), En cyclopedia of survey research methods. (pp. 91 94). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc. doi: http://dx.doi.org.lp.hscl.ufl.edu/10.4135/9781412963947.n61 Caribbean Agricultural Research and Development Institute (CARDI). (2011). Introduction/History . Retrieved from http://www.cardi.org/welcome to cardi/history/ Caribbean Examinations Council. (2011). About us . Retrieved from http://www.cxc.org/?q=about us

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190 Carrington, E. W. (2003) Address by Edwin W. Carr ington, Secretary General, CARICOM, at the Caribbean Examinations Council 30 th Anniversary Commemorative Lecture, 24 th April 2003, Sherbourne Conference centre, Barbados. Retrieved from http://www.caricom.org/jsp/speeches/30cxc_carrington.jsp Caribbean Dis aster Emergency Management Agency. (2014). CDEMA History . Retrieved from http://www.cdema.org/index.php?option=com_content&view= article&id=357&Itemid=118# CARICOM Secretariat. (2001). Revised Treaty of Chaguaramas Establishing The Caribbean Community Including The CARICOM Single Market Economy . Retrieved from http://www.caricom.org/jsp/community/revised_treaty.jsp? menu=community CARICOM Secretariat. (2007). Strategic approach to realizing the agriculture contribution to CARICOM development. CARICOM Agriculture Donor Conference, Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago, 2 June 2007. CARICOM Secretariat. (20 11). CARICOM Member States/CARICOM Associate Members. Retrieved from: http://www.caricom.org/ jsp/community/member_ states.jsp?menu=community CARICOM Secretariat. (2013). Welcome to the Caribbean Week of Agriculture 2013 Webpage! Retrieved from http://www.caric om.org/jsp/CWA/CWA_Index.jsp? menu=community Central Intelligence Agency of the Government of the United States of America. (2013). The CIA World Factbook . Retrieved from https://www.cia.gov/library/ publications/the world factbook/ Chintananie, B. (2012). Guyana agricultural extensi on in a changing environment: Towards a farming systems approach . Retrieved from http://www.academia.edu /531 0859/Guyana_Agricultural_Extension_ in_a_Changing_Environment_ Toward s_the_Farming_Systems_Approach_ Cook, K. W., & Bernthal, P. (1998). Job/role competency survey report . Development Dimensions International. HR Benchmark Group, 4(1). Retrieved from htt ps://www.ddiworld.com/DDIWorld/media/trend research/job role competency practices_fullreport_ddi.pdf?ext=.pdf Cooper, A.W. & Graham, D.L. (2001). Competencies n eeded to be successful county agents and county supervisors. Journal of Extension , 39(1). Re trieved from http://www.joe.org/joe/2001february/rb3.php Conklin, N.L., Hook, L.L., Kelbaugh, B.J., & Neito, R.D. 20 02. Examining a professional development system: A comprehensive needs assessment approach. Journal of Extension . Retrieved from http:/ /www.joe.org/joe/2002october/a1.php

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191 Coppernoll, S. & Stone, B. (2003). Texas Coopera tive Extension, The Texas A&M University System Competency Model. http://collaborat e.extension.org/mediawiki/ files /e/e5/TexasAgriLifeCompetencyModel.pdf Cru se, R. & Rhine y, K. (2012). The Caribbean Atlas Project. The CARICOM. Retrieved from http://www.caribbean atlas.com/en/map collection/ regional alliances.html Cruse, R. & Rhiney, K. (2012). The Caribbean Atlas Pro ject. The Caribbean Islands. http://www.caribbean atlas.com/en/the caribbean in brief/the Caribbean islands/ CTA (Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Co operation) Agritrade. 2012. Special report: The Caribbean Community Agricultural Policy: Challenges ahead. Dillman,D.A., J.D.Smyth, & L.M. Chri stian. (2009). Internet, mail and mixed mode surveys: The tailored design method. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley and Sons, Inc. Dlamini, B.M. (2004). Self reported levels of competence and training needs in statistical procedures by university academic st af f in Botswana and Swaziland. Journal of International Agricultural Extension and Education , 11(3) 23 31. Retrieved from: http://www.aiaee.org/attachments/article/211/Dlamini%2011.3 3.pdf Ellis, P.D. (2009). Thresholds for interpreting effect sizes. Hon g Kong Poly Technic University. Retrieved from http://www.polyu.edu.hk/mm/effectsizefaqs/ thresholds_for_interpreting_effect_sizes2.html Ennis, M.R. (2008). Competency models: A review of the l iterature and the role of the employment and training adminis tration (ETA) . U.S. Departm ent of Labor. Retrieved from http://wdr.doleta.gov/research/FullText_Documents/ Competency% 20Models%20 %20A%20Review%20of%20Literature%20and%20 the%20Role% 20of%20the%20Employment%20and%20Training%20 Administration.pdf Erbaugh , J.M., Kibwika, P., & Donnermeyer, J. (2007). Assess ing extension agent knowledge and training needs to improve IPM dissemination in Uganda. Journal of Internation al Agricultural Extension Education , 14(1), 222 232. Retr ieved from http://www.aiaee. o rg/attachments/article/123/Erbaugh%2014.1 5.pdf Food and Agriculture Organization Sub Regional Office for the Caribbean, Barbados. (2011). Regional consultation on policy and pr ogrammatic actions to address high food prices in the Caribbean . Summary of Proceedings. Retrieved from http://www.fao.org/fileadmin/user_upload/ISFP/Caribbean_Regional_ Consultation_on_Policy_and_Programmatic_Actions_t%E2%80%A6.pdf

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197 Suriname Business Forum. (2012). Restructuring of the Agriculture Extension Service Paramaribo, Suriname Tladi, F.M. (2004). Job content and training needs of agr icultural extension agents in South Central Botswana. Journal of International Ag riculture Extension Education . 11(3 ), 33 39 . Retrieved from: DOI: 10.5191/jiaee.2004.11304 Trobia, A. (2008). Cronbach's alpha. In P. Lavrakas (Ed.), Encyclopedia of survey research methods. (pp. 169 171). Thousand Oaks , CA: SAGE Publications, Inc. doi: http://dx.doi.org.lp.hscl.ufl.edu/10.4135/9781412963947.n117 Umaharan, P. (2008). A green step forward: Creating a strategic, sustainable, knowledge driven and technology based agricult ur e industry in the Caribbean. Report on the Tropical Congress Workshop . Retrieved from: http://sta.uwi.edu/newspics/2009/Forginganew paradigmforCaribbean Agriculture.pdf United States Library of Congress. (n.d.). Appendix C : Islands of the Commonwealth Caribbean . Retrieved from http://lc web2.loc.gov/frd/cs/caribbean_islands/cx_ appnc.html University of the West Indies. (2013). Report: Regional extension meeting on networking for change Vandenberg, L. (2012). Core competencies in MSU Extension. Retrieved from http://od.msue.msu.edu/professional_development/core_competencies . Michigan State University Organizational Development Vandenberg, L. & Foerster, K. (2008). Core Competencie s in MSU Extension. Waters, R.G. & Haskell, L.J. (1989). Identifying staff development needs of cooperative extension faculty using a modified Borich needs assessment model. Journal of Agricultural Education , 30(2), 26 32. Retrieved from http://www.jae online.org/attachments/article/826/Waters,%20R%20&%20Haskell,%20L_Vol30_ 2_26 32.pdf World Vision (n.d.). Introducing the use of competencies. Retrieved from http://www.transformational development.org/ministry/transdev2.nsf/ Using%20Competencies.pdf Zhan g, W., & Cao, X. (2008). Nonresponse rates. In P. Lavrakas (Ed.), Encyclopedia of survey research methods. (pp. 537 540). Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE Publications, Inc. doi: http://dx.doi.org.lp.hscl.u fl.edu/10.4135/9781412963947. n342 Zingheim, P. K., Ledfo rd, G. E. J., & Schuster, J. R. (1996). Competencies and competency models: Does one size fit all? ACA Journal, 5 (1), 56 64. Retrieved

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198 from http://www.schusterzingheim.com/docs/Competencies_and_Competency _Models.pdf

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199 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH Norma Samuel h olds an associate d egree from the Eastern Caribbean Institute of Agriculture and Forestry , Trinidad (1990) in general a griculture. She comp leted her bachelor s (1997) and m versity of Georgia majoring in p lant protection a nd pest m anagement. Samuel started her agricultural career with the Ministry of Agriculture in Antigua and Barbuda at the Research Field Station at Dunbars and the Plant Protection and Quarantine Unit. She has twelve years of experience as an extension a gent in the United States of America with Clemson University Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Extension working in the areas of residential and commercial horticulture, wate r resources, 4 H youth deve lopment, and Master Gardener c oordinator. Samuel is recognized in the field for h er outstanding Master Gardener p rogram which serves as a model in the state of Florida; her ability to empower her MG volunteers; risk management; internationalizing extension efforts; and utilization of TurningPoint Technology to enhance programming.