Martin Mulder

Em. Professor of Education

A competence profile for development agents in Ethiopia

by mmulder on September 1, 2017

Research of Chalachew Taregne et al on rural advisory services has just been published in the Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension. The first 50 colleagues who want to download the paper can download it from here for free: http://www.tandfonline.com/eprint/WnyMSKwdpf7deB83DYVv/full Enjoy!

Abstract:

‘Purpose: Development Agents (DAs) are employed by agricultural
departments to provide capacity development for farmers. In this
contribution, the adjustment of a competence profile originally
developed for the Province of Esfahan [Karbasioun, M., M. Mulder,
and H. J. A. Biemans. 2007. ‘Towards a Job Competency Profile for
Agricultural Extension Instructors: A Survey of Views of Experts.’
Human Resource Development International 10 (2): 137–151] is
described for the context of the West Gojjam Zone in Ethiopia. This
was necessary because 10 years’ time has elapsed since the
development of the profile, new insights in competence theory have
emerged, and contextual variation needs to be taken into account.
Design/methods/approach: Firstly, the competence profile of
Karbasioun, Mulder, and Biemans. [2007. ‘Towards a Job Competency
Profile for Agricultural Extension Instructors: A Survey of Views of
Experts.’ Human Resource Development International 10 (2): 137–151]
was adjusted through a line-by-line conceptual analysis. Secondly,
the adjusted profile was validated by 12 experts in a workshop.
Thirdly, this profile was thoroughly discussed by four focus groups of
DAs, each composed of eight to nine persons. Transcripts of the
validation by experts and discussion with DAs were analysed using
content analysis. Finally, the profile was further backed up by
literature and member checks (which are done by experts in the field).
Findings: The study revealed validated competence profile for
Development Agents (DAs) with 4 competence clusters and 15
underlying competencies for the Ethiopian context: knowledge on
adult education, extension management, communication, and
professional ethics, among others.
Practical Implications: DAs’ recruitment and selection, performance
evaluation, and training programmes can be developed using this
new competence profile.
Theoretical Implications: This study confirms the context-bound, indivisible,
interrelated, and developmental nature of competencies which
refutes the behaviouristic-functionalistic conceptualization of them.
Originality/value: This contribution is a contextual variation and
update of the study of Karbasioun, Mulder, and Biemans. [2007.
‘Towards a Job Competency Profile for Agricultural Extension
Instructors: A Survey of Views of Experts.’ Human Resource
Development International 10 (2): 137–151] and shows that different
contexts of investigating competencies uncover different results.’

Full reference

Tarekegne , C., Wesselink, R. Biemans, J. A.,  & Mulder, M. (2017): Developing and validating a competence profile for Development Agents: an Ethiopian case study. The Journal of Agricultural Education and Extension, DOI: 10.1080/1389224X.2017.1368400

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