Abstract Brungardt - Evaluation of the Outcomes of an Academic Collegiate Leadership Program

Evaluation of the Outcomes of an Academic Collegiate Leadership Program

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TITLE Evaluation of the Outcomes of an Academic Collegiate Leadership Program
RESEARCHER Curtis L. Brungardt
Department of Secondary Education
Kansas State University
Doctoral Dissertation: Spring 1997

To evaluate the impact of an academic collegiate leadership program on student outcomes.

This study utilized a quasi-experimental, nonequivalence control group design. Participating students (N = 402) were pre and post-tested after the Leadership Certificate Program at Fort Hays State University. Those students (N = 90) who completed the Leadership Studies field of emphasis were also post-tested for a second time on the measures. All students who completed the Leadership Certificate program were also posttested on a quantitative/qualitative attitudinal survey. Three comparable university classrooms were identified and pre and post-test with the same dependent variables. Leadership Studies students mirrored the campus population; they were overwhelmingly caucasian, from western Kansas and 55 percent were male. The Post-Program Attitude Survey (21-items) assessed participants' opinions, attitudes, and reactions about their program experiences. The Comprehensive Exam, utilized in a pre-test, post-test format served as the knowledge or learning portion of the assessment. The Leadership Practices Inventory (LPI) served as the behavior method of assessment.

Attitude, cognition, and behavior data did show a significant change as a result of the leadership studies programs. Students felt that program activities had enhanced their abilities in leadership. Second, students improved their knowledge about leadership through participation in the program. Third, students also practiced more leadership behavior because of their involvement in program course work: LPI scores were significantly different (p < .001) on Challenging, Inspiring, Enabling and Modeling from the first day as compared to the last day of the Leadership Certificate program. Pre and posttest scores on the LPI for those students completing the Leadership Studies field of emphasis were significantly different (p < .02) on Challenging, Inspiring and Modeling (with Enabling and Encouraging significant at the .05 level). Comparisons between all students entering either program and those who completed either program were significantly different (p < .001) for all five leadership practices. Leadership studies students scores on all five leadership practices were significantly higher (p < .02) than students in the control group.

There were no significant correlation’s between student scores on the Comprehensive Exam and the LPI. There was a positive significant relationship between LPI scores and the Post-Program Attitude scores indicating that a student's attitude about their leadership ability and the effectiveness of the Leadership Studies program does relate significantly to their practice of leadership behavior.