Degree Name

EdD (Doctor of Education)


Educational Leadership

Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Terrence A. Tollefson

Committee Members

Kathryn K. Franklin, Jon R. Webb, Jasmine R. Renner, Henry J. Antikiewicz


The primary trouble befalling Nigeria and its Niger Delta has been described as a failure of leadership. At various periods during the late 20th and early 21st centuries, Nigeria endured a bloody civil war and years of repressive military rule. Violence in the Niger Delta region, widespread brain drain, and frequent strikes that disrupted academic calendars at universities had serious ramifications for the region's educational system.

This study explores former students' perceptions of perceived leadership qualities seen in educational leaders at universities in the Niger Delta and how those qualities impact the acquired leadership skills of expatriate Nigerian postgraduates. Participants were Nigerian postgraduates living in Africa, Europe, and North America. Twenty-three men and 4 women took part in the study. Purposeful snowballing sampling procedures was used to select the sample. A mixed method design was used to collect data through structured electronic-mail surveys, and data were analyzed using constant comparative analysis procedures.

Fifteen areas of influence emerged from expatriates' perceptions of these educational leaders. Areas of influence were categorized into 4 major constructs: Leading qualities, Perceived produced impacts, Perceived barriers, and Responses. Expatriates perceived few negative leading qualities but perceived too many real negative impacts that posed barriers to their acquired leadership skills. They are aware that these perceived barriers could be social, economic, environmental, and ethnic. These perceived impacts and barriers have generated fear in respondents. Anger appeared to be postgraduates' most common response to negative leadership qualities of educational leaders, while restlessness, associated with desire for effective leadership in the region appeared to be a common attitude among respondents.

Because educational leadership has tremendous impact on the lives of the country's postgraduates, and in light of increasing reports of "brain drain" from the region, Nigeria's educational leadership should be researched from every possible angle. A new theoretical model of perceptions of leadership qualities should be the focus of future research as Nigerian expatriates examine their own leadership qualities and, eventually, put them to use.

Document Type

Dissertation - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.