Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program

Educational Administration


Educational Leadership, Counseling, and Foundations

Major Professor

Cambre, Belinda M.; Causey-Konate, Tammie

Second Advisor

Haydel, Juanita B.

Third Advisor

Thoreson, Claire


This study examined the self-perceived leadership orientations of headmasters of independent schools. This research expanded the current body of work that supports Bolman and Deal's (2003) multi-frame explanation that leaders use different orientations (frames) to understand their roles, clarify organizational situations, and make decisions. Using the four-frame model (structural, human resource, political, and symbolic) by Bolman and Deal, this study sought to identify common leadership orientations employed by headmasters of Independent Schools Association of the Southwest (ISAS), Southern Association of Independent Schools (SAIS), and the Association of Independent Schools of Greater Washington (AISGW) member Schools. The study also identified how many frames headmasters use and to what extent the self-perceived orientations relate to the headmasters' self-perceived overall effectiveness as managers and leaders. The Leadership Orientations (Self) survey developed by Bolman and Deal (1990) was revised, validated, and reliability was established before being sent to 272 headmasters of member schools of ISAS, SAIS, and AISGW. Data were collected from 94 respondents. The ISAS, SAIS, and AISGW are non-profit, voluntary membership organizations of independent schools located mostly in the southeastern and southwestern United States, as well as the greater Washington, DC metro area. The ISAS, SAIS, and AISGW are also members of good standing of the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) Commission on Accreditation. An analysis of the data revealed, through descriptive statistics, that all four frames are used by the headmasters and most headmasters report using more than one frame. Data analysis suggests that specific relationships exist between the headmasters' self-reported frame use and their perceived effectiveness as managers and as leaders. In addition, differences were observed between frame usage and teacher certification and frame usage and years of administrative experience.


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