Term of Award
Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership (Ed.D.)
Document Type and Release Option
Dissertation (open access)
Copyright Statement / License for Reuse
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
College of Education
Committee Member 1
Committee Member 2
Carl (Kip) Sorgen
Using a sample of 539 accounting faculty teaching in the United States, this study explored perceptions of the ethicality and political skill of their direct supervisors and self-reported levels of job satisfaction. Ethicality was measured with the Ethical Leadership Scale (ELS) and the Behavioral Integrity (BI) Scale. These measures, which were highly correlated, were proxy measures for accounting faculty perceptions of the tone-at-the-top (TATT)—the ethical leadership under which faculty teach and research. The results indicated that while the majority of accounting faculty perceived their direct supervisor as being ethical, about a third (28% BI, 34.8% ELS) of them did not affirmatively do so. This latter finding may perhaps be indicative of unethical work environments that have been found to promote unethical behaviors, such as research misconduct, and of unethical work environments that are not conducive to the teaching of accounting ethics. The variables of faculty rank, experience, and tenure were found significantly and negatively correlated with faculty perceptions of ethicality. The findings for political skill, which was measured with the Political Skill Inventory (PSI), also indicated that the majority of faculty perceived their direct supervisor as being politically skillful. The PSI was significantly and positively correlated with both measures of ethicality. It has been suggested that the close relationship between perceptions of ethicality and perceptions of political skill may work to confound faculty assessments of the ethical cultures in which they work. In addition, the majority of accounting faculty were satisfied with their jobs. Job satisfaction was measured with the Michigan Organizational Assessment Questionnaire Job Satisfaction Subscale (MOAQ-JSS). More experienced, higher ranked, and tenured faculty were less satisfied with their jobs and perceived their direct supervisors as being less ethical. Perceptions of ethical leadership, as measured with the ELS, along with the tenure variable explained 37.9% of the variability in faculty job satisfaction. The findings from this research provide benchmarks for accounting faculty perceptions of the TATT and political skill of their direct supervisors and for the job satisfaction of accounting faculty.
Ariail, D. L. (2022). The ethicality and political skill of leaders and subordinate job satisfaction: A study of accounting faculty. (Doctoral Dissertation). Georgia Southern University, Statesboro, GA.
Research Data and Supplementary Material