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Perceptions of Nursing Academic Administrators and Faculty Related to the Pursuit of Upper-Level Administrative Careers

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TITLE Perceptions of Nursing Academic Administrators and Faculty Related to the Pursuit of Upper-Level Administrative Careers
 
RESEARCHER Lavonne M. Adams
School of Education
Andrews University (Mississippi)
Doctoral Dissertation: June 2003

OBJECTIVE
This study explored factors related to recruitment of nursing academic administrators, including leadership practices of current administrators, career aspirations of potential administrators, and perceptions of both groups toward a career in academic administration.

METHODOLOGY
The sample included a regional cross-section of nursing academic administrators and faculty in 54 NLNAC- or CCNE- accredited associate degree and baccalaureate degree program in private colleges or universities. Respondents completed the Leadership Practices Inventory, and distributed copies of the LPI-Observer, Career Aspirations Questionnaire and Recruitment Questionnaire (both researcher-designed). to their faculty colleagues. Faculty respondents (N=259) can be described as female (95%), 46-55 years old (50%), holding positions with partial administrative responsibilities (52%), assistant professors (40%), being employed 10 years or less in academia (48%), and holding a master's degree in nursing (57%). The majority indicated they wouldn't consider a position with greater administrative responsibilities (63%)

KEY FINDINGS
No significant difference was found between faculty total scores on the LPI-Observer and the categories defined by the LPI-Self total scores. Constituents (faculty) grouped into low, medium, and high groups rated their leaders differently on Modeling and Enabling (the other three leadership Practices were not investigated).

Factors identified as most important in encouraging entry into administration were additional challenge/variety of work, opportunity to influence organizational climate for change, opportunity to facilitate faculty growth and development, and mix of administration with teaching. Factors identified as most important in discouraging entry into administration were workload, budgetary constraints, conflict with faculty within department and conflict with administration.

Although not statistically significant, a larger percentage of faculty associated with high scores on LPI-Self total indicated a willingness to pursue a position with greater administrative responsibility than those who were in the low or medium categories.

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