Term of Award

Fall 2007

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Education Administration (Ed.D.)

Document Type and Release Option

Dissertation (open access)

Department

Department of Leadership, Technology, and Human Development

Committee Chair

Walter S. Polka

Committee Member 1

Linda M. Arthur

Committee Member 2

Margaret LaMontagne

Abstract

This study was designed to measure the extent to which middle school principal leadership strategies impact teachers use of data. The subjects were practicing teachers from six middle schools in a large urban school district in the state of Georgia. Each participant was either a language arts, mathematics or science teacher in grade six, seven or eight. The study was ex-post facto and descriptive in nature and the researcher used a mixed method design to collect the data. A researcher-developed instrument was administered to each subject. The findings revealed that principal leadership strategies do impact teachers' use of data. Principal leadership strategies were also found to have a greater impact on teachers' use of data in benchmark than non-benchmark schools. The purpose of the study was to determine the extent to which principal leadership strategies (independent variable) influenced teachers' use of data in benchmark and non-benchmark schools (dependent variable). An ex-post facto descriptive research design was used to compare the impact of the independent variable, principal leadership strategies, on the dependent variable, teachers use of data in benchmark and non-benchmark schools. The researcher designed a Teachers' Perception of Principal Leadership Survey and distributed it to 268 language arts, mathematics and science teachers in grades six, seven and eight in six middle schools within a large metropolitan school district in Georgia . One of the six schools was unable to participate in the study due to circumstances beyond the researchers or the schools control. The teachers' response to questions related to the use of data in the areas of principal leadership, instruction, and assessment were reported using a Likert type scale (strongly disagree, disagree, neutral, agree and strongly agree). In addition, principal structured interviews were conducted to add authenticity to the items assessed on the survey. The results were collected and analyzed using an independent t-test to determine mean scale scores and variances within and between groups. All research questions related to the study were answered.

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