Date of Award

12-1996

Degree Name

Doctor of Education

Department

Educational Leadership, Research and Technology

First Advisor

Dr. Gene Thompson

Second Advisor

Dr. Charles Warfield

Third Advisor

Dr. Uldis Smidchens

Fourth Advisor

Dr. H. Bart Merkle

Abstract

This study sought to describe the leadership behaviors of students involved in the Excellence in Leadership Program (ELP) at Grand Valley State University. Additionally, it sought to determine how ELP influences the leadership behaviors of its members. The Leadership Practices Inventory - Student Version (LPI) was used to measure the leadership behavior frequencies of five groups of students at the beginning and end of the 1995-1996 academic year. Non-ELP-members, newly registered ELP members, and ELP members at three different achievement levels (Bronze, Silver, and Gold) were compared. The behaviors measured by this instrument are: Enabling Others to Act, Modeling the Way, Inspiring a Shared Vision, Encouraging the Heart, and Challenging the Process.

It was concluded that New-ELP-members exhibit the leadership practices Inspiring Shared Vision, Encouraging the Heart, and Challenging the Process more frequently than the general student population.

A second finding related to sex and leadership behaviors. These results were contrary to expected conclusions. Among the undergraduate GVSU student body, women exhibited more frequent leader behaviors than men for Enabling Others to Act, Modeling the Way, and Encouraging the Heart. Similarly, among Bronze level ELP members, women exhibited more frequent leader behaviors for Modeling the Way, and Encouraging the Heart.

The last conclusion concerned leader behavior and class standing. Among Non-ELP-members, Juniors exhibited less frequent leader behaviors than Freshman or Seniors. This both supported and contrasted expected findings. As an indicator of increased development, it is intuitive that Juniors would practice leader behaviors less frequently than Seniors and counter-intuitive that Juniors practice those behaviors less frequently than Freshman.

No conclusions were drawn regarding the relationship between participation in ELP and leader behaviors; ELP achievement levels and leader behaviors; or continuation in the ELP program and leader behaviors.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access

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