Long term orientation: A comparative study amongst engineer and tourism students


Katia A. Figueroa-Rodríguez
Luis A. Castillo-González https://orcid.org/0000-0002-1442-9487
Marisol Lima-Solano https://orcid.org/0000-0002-5315-376X
María Esther Méndez-Cadena https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8785-0531


Tourism education, engineer students, student profile, construct validity, planning, tradition


Objective: To investigate differences amongst the LTO (Long Term Orientation) profile of graduate students of two academic programs: tourism and engineer.

Design/methodology/approach: A total of 66 students participated in the study. The items of each construct corresponded to the two dimensions established by the original LTO scale. The validity test for the measurement scale was based first on exploratory and then on confirmatory factor analysis. The internal reliability consistency of the multi-item scales was assessed with Cronbach’s alpha. Independent sample t-tests were applied to verify the hypothesis.

Results: The eight-item LTO scale performed reasonably well, lending support for its internal validity for the sample. The engineering students (6.16±0.65) had higher levels for the planning dimension compared with the tourism students (6.10±0.56), still there were no significant differences in the estimates (t=-0.391, p=0.697), and students of the tourism program rated significantly higher (t=3.557, p=0.001) for the tradition dimension (6.12±0.59) compared to the engineering students (5.42±0.90).

Limitations/implications: The study focus only in one personality trait. Education providers can draw upon these findings a better understanding of their students, becoming relevant for the curriculum.

Findings/Conclusions: Students of the tourism academic program score higher in the tradition dimension of the LTO profile. On the contrary, there was no difference regarding the planning factor of the LTO profile. Therefore, LTO scale might be useful for understanding students’ decisions and personal orientations, allowing for academic programs to better focus their curriculum.

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