Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Diverse perspectives: African American faculty perceptions of organizational culture at community colleges
by Letcher, Annette, Ed.D., California State University, Fullerton, 2014, 237; 3580202
Abstract (Summary)

Colleges have become more multicultural in terms of race and ethnicity. This is evident in student enrollment. However, the faculty does not reflect the same trend toward diversity. If certain tacit assumptions about race and ethnicity are embedded within the culture, this may hinder diversity in hiring practices (Townsend, 2006).

This qualitative study used hermeneutic phenomenology to examine African American community college faculty perceptions of organizational culture to better understand how history, norms, espoused values, beliefs, climate, leadership, structural systems, and perceptions of individuals within the community college influence the underrepresentation of African American faculty in community college systems. Additionally, portraiture, a technique used to capture the dialogue of the portraitist (researcher) and the subjects (the participants) was used to capture the complexity and dimensions of participants lived experiences in a social and cultural context.

The findings of this study indicate that even though diversity is practiced on paper there are still elements in the organizational culture that are resistant to change. These barriers hinder the recruitment of minority faculty, specifically African Americans. Failure to address the issues of underrepresentation of African American faculty hinders diversification of the learning environment and deprives students of the opportunity to have mentors and role models that are a reflection of their race and ethnicity. In addition, having a diverse faculty creates opportunities for students to be exposed to diverse perspectives. Improved measures in the recruitment and retention of African American faculty should be considered so diversification can be realized in every facet of the community college.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Nixon, John
School: California State University, Fullerton
School Location: United States -- California
Source: DAI-A 75/07(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Educational leadership
Keywords: Community college, organizational culture, perceptions African American faculty, portraiture, recruitment
Publication Number: 3580202
ISBN: 978-1-303-88988-2
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