Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Women's paths to the superintendency in Oregon
by Ceniga, Barbara, Ed.D., Lewis and Clark College, 2008, 125; 3330400
Abstract (Summary)

The purpose of this study was to describe through surveys and qualitative inquiry how women superintendents in Oregon describe themselves. What factors and experiences contributed to women successfully attaining the superintendency? I have identified internal, external and infrastructural barriers faced by women as they move into the superintendency. Internal barriers include: balancing personal and professional lives, having high self esteem, developing a career path, and having motivation and aspiration. External barriers include: participating in administrative preparation programs, facing sex discrimination, and dealing with school boards. Infrastructural barriers include: having mentors, developing sponsors and professional support and superintendent skills needed to be successful. The study questions follow: (1) What patterns, themes or skills emerge when women superintendents describe themselves? (2) What are the key factors to successful entry into the role of superintendent for women? (3) Do female superintendents encounter barriers to the position of superintendent, and if so, how were they overcome? (4) What skills do women superintendents identify as important?

The study utilizes purposeful sampling by choosing six female superintendents from various size districts and locations in Oregon to interview. A three part survey was sent to the 34 women superintendents in Oregon. Part I collected demographic information including: age, school district size, salary, years of experience as a superintendent in and outside of Oregon, the number of districts served in the superintendent capacity, their years teaching, degree earned and level of teaching (elementary, secondary). Part II of the survey was used to collect data to answer the following research question: What are the perceived barriers keeping women from obtaining the position of superintendent? Part III of the survey was used to collect answers to the following research question: What are the important skills for a superintendent to have?

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Schmuck, Patricia
Commitee: Doyle, Carol, Howser, Mike
School: Lewis and Clark College
Department: Education
School Location: United States -- Oregon
Source: DAI-A 69/09, Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Womens studies, Educational administration
Keywords: Oregon, Superintendency, Women superintendents
Publication Number: 3330400
ISBN: 978-0-549-84132-6
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