|TITLE:||A Comparative Analysis of Transformational Leadership Behaviors of Academic Guidance Counselors in Urban, Suburban, and Rural Connecticut Community Colleges|
Mary Katherine Clark
School of Education
University of Bridgeport
Unpublished doctoral dissertation: Spring 2011
The purpose of this study was to compare the transformational leadership behaviors of urban, suburban, and rural academic guidance counselors in the Connecticut Community College System.
The participants of this study were community college academic advisors, counselors, disability services and retention specialists in the twelve Connecticut Community Colleges. These participants were urban, suburban, and rural areas. While 82 individuals were identified by these terms, 51 individuals participated in the survey. They completed the Leadership Practices Inventory. Fifteen males and 36 females returned surveys, and 19 were from urban areas, 21 from the suburbs, and 11 from rural communities.
The most frequently engaged in leadership practice was Enable, followed by Encourage, Model, Challenge and Inspire. No significant differences were found on any of the five leadership practices on the basis of respondent gender. Likewise, no significant differences were found between urban and suburban guidance counselor’s use of the five leadership practices; this was also true between urban and rural counselors. Comparisons between rural and suburban counselor’s revealed no significant differences on Model, Inspire, Enable and Encourage; with suburban counselors showing significantly more use of Challenge than their rural colleagues.
No significant differences were found on any of the five leadership practices when comparing suburban male and female guidance counselors, or urban female and suburban male counselors, or between rural female and suburban male counselors, or rural male and suburban male counselors. Comparisons between suburban and urban male counselors revealed no significant differences on the leadership practices of Model, Inspire, Challenge, and Enable. Males in suburban areas reported engaging more in Encouraging when compared with males in urban areas.
The findings indicated that there were few statistical differences in the leadership practices of men and women in rural, urban, and suburban areas. The five out of 95 hypothesized differences that were statistically different included rural counselors making less frequent use than their suburban counterparts on Challenge, suburban males engaging more frequently in Encouraging than urban males, suburban females engaging more in Encouraging that urban males, urban females using Encourage more than urban males, and urban females using Model more frequently than rural males.