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School Administrators' Perceptions of a Doctorate in Educational Leadership on Professional Preparation

Diaz, Patty (2021) School Administrators' Perceptions of a Doctorate in Educational Leadership on Professional Preparation. Doctoral thesis, Northern Arizona University.

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This study explored school leaders’ perceptions of the Ed.D. in Educational Leadership at a university referred to as GJKU and its influences on their professional preparation as well as faculty’s perceptions of the doctoral program. A case study methodology was used to investigate, describe, and analyze the perceptions of 10 students and four faculty from GJKU. The primary sources of data collected and analyzed were generated by in-depth semi-structured interviews with school leaders who graduated with an Ed.D. and a focus group of faculty. Additional data analyzed were field notes and artifacts collections, such as program mission, goals and outlines, course descriptions, and requests from the academic department. There were three major findings that emerged from this study. School leaders and faculty collectively described the doctoral program as beneficial to professional preparation. First, they noted the influence of the core curriculum in leadership, research and statistics, and foundation, described by school leaders as perceived instructional practices aligned with their position. Additionally, school leaders revealed how the correlation of courses and faculty provided relevant content outcomes that were significant factors in utilizing their learning and application. The second major finding that emerged from this study revealed that the knowledge and experience of faculty who teach in the doctoral program provided instruction that was relevant to the students’ professional preparation. The data emphasized faculty K-12 administrative experiences as important in preparing school leaders for educational leadership positions. Lastly, the third theme to emerge from this study data revealed that the cohort model for the doctoral program was a supportive and positive learning experience that contributed to school leaders’ professional preparation. The data revealed that the relationships and professional network among students created a sense of community and provided school leaders with a network of resources to draw upon professionally.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Publisher’s Statement: © Copyright is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the Cline Library, Northern Arizona University. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
Keywords: Leadership; Professional Preparation; School Leaders; School administrators; Perception
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
NAU Depositing Author Academic Status: Student
Department/Unit: Graduate College > Theses and Dissertations
College of Education > Educational Leadership
Date Deposited: 24 Feb 2022 15:45
Last Modified: 24 Feb 2022 15:45
URI: https://openknowledge.nau.edu/id/eprint/5748

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