Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Administration and Higher Education

Number of Pages



The Use of Jargon in Education: 1920-1990 provides a qualitative study based on communication theory was conducted on every issue of selected education journals at ten-year intervals from 1920 to 1990. Ninety preselected vocabulary words were the specific jargon terms evaluated in this study. Content analysis was the methodology for this study. The use of these terms was defined, quantified, tabulated, and graphed and similar terms and/or uses were identified. The ninety preselected vocabulary words were used 12,716 times for all five codes. Code 5 was deleted since it was for a different meaning than the one identified in this study. The jargon was used 5,399 times for codes 1 through 4 inclusive. Fourteen of the ninety jargon terms were not found in any issue of the sample. Nine of the jargon terms were found in only one journal in one decade. Only one of the preselected terms, ability grouping, was found in all decades and appeared 417 times as nineteen different terms/phrases with essentially constant context. The most prevalent jargon term, reform, appeared 809 times. The context of reform evolved from consolidation in the early decade to decentralization in the 1970's differentiation and local empowerment in the 1980's and 1990. No specific guidelines or criteria for reform were given in the literature. The use of jargon in education is a problem where it is not used consistently. This inconsistency limits how people within the profession communicate with each other and also how those professionals communicate with others.


Education; Jargon; Use

Controlled Subject

School management and organization; Language and languages

File Format


File Size

7014.4 KB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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