Perception of the Learning Organization Concept: The Case of Professional College in Russia
The main purpose of this research was to evaluate the difference in staff’s and students’ perception of the dimensions of a learning organization in a professional college in Russia. A pre-test/ post-test research design was used in a case of a typical college in St. Petersburg, Russia. About 40 employees and 300 students participated in the research during two phases (2015 & 2017). The expanded version of Watkins’ and Marsick’s learning organization questionnaire was used to measure the dimensions of the learning organization. The differences in perception were analyzed using a T-test. The results showed that the students indicated lower levels of the dimensions of a learning organization than did staff. The data gathered from the case demonstrated knowledge sharing activities were not enough to significantly change staff’s perception of college as a learning organization. Students’ opinion, on the contrary, changed. At the post-test phase, students rated continuous learning dimension, inquiry and dialogue, team learning and strategic practices dimensions higher than before. There is a probability that the consistent implementation of knowledge sharing practices changes the perception of a college as a learning organization for its' customers – students. This study contributes empirical findings on learning organization in primary professional education institutions because of the latter lack conceptual and empirical studies.