Degree Name

EdD (Doctor of Education)

Program

Educational Leadership

Date of Award

August 1980

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine if the leader behavior of the principal and the organizational climate of the school were perceived differently by teachers in elementary schools with female principals when compared to elementary schools with male principals. It also sought to determine if significant differences existed between female and male teachers' perceptions of both female and male principals. A total of 217 subjects responded. Ten female and 10 male principals were evaluated by 119 female teachers and 98 male teachers using the Leader Behavior Description Questionnaire, Form XII (LBDQ) and the Organizational Climate Description Questionnaire, Form IV (OCDQ). No significant differences were found in total leader behaviors or organizational climate profiles. No significant differences were found in leader behavior dimensions of demanding reconciliation, tolerance of uncertainty, initiation of structure, tolerance of freedom, role retention, consideration, production emphasis, predictive accuracy, or integration. Significant differences were found between female and male principals in Dimension 1 (representation), Dimension 4 (persuasiveness), and Dimension 12 (superior orientation). No significant differences were found in organizational climate dimensions of disengagement, hindrance, production emphasis, or thrust. Significant differences were found between female and male principals in Dimension 3 (esprit), Dimension 4 (intimacy), Dimension 5 (aloofness), and Dimension 8 (consideration). In addition, significant differences were found between female and male teachers' perceptions of female principals in leader behavior Dimension 1 (representation), Dimension 4 (persuasiveness) and Dimension 5 (initiation of structure). Significant differences were found in organizational climate Dimension 3 (esprit) and Dimension 7 (thrust). No significant differences were found in female and male teachers' perceptions of male principals on either the LBDQ or OCDQ. In comparing female and male principals, it was found that: (1) Female principals acted and spoke more representative of the group. (2) Female principals used persuasion and argument more effectively and exhibited stronger convictions. (3) Female principals maintained more cordial relations with superiors, had more influence with them, and were striving for higher status. In comparing school climates, it was found that: (1) Morale was extremely higher in schools with female principals. (2) Intimacy was considerably higher in schools with female principals. (3) Female principals were more aloof. They preferred to "go by the book" and to be guided by rules and policies rather than to deal in an informal face-to-face situation. (4) Female principals were more considerate and tried to do things for teachers in human terms. In comparing female and male teachers' perceptions of female principals, it was found that female principals were perceived as more representative, more persuasive and to exhibit greater initiation of structure by female teachers than by male teachers. Female teachers perceived higher morale in schools with female principals than did male teachers. Female teachers perceived greater thrust from female principals than did male teachers. Recommendations based on the findings were given.

Document Type

Dissertation - Open Access

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