Imagery of Regent people and campus

Dissertation Abstract

The Relationship of Leadership Behaviors With Follower Performance: A Study of Alternative Schools

Jonathan Mozingo Wallace
Regent University

The research concerning the effect leadership has on education has focused primarily on the administrative levels of education (York-Barr & Duke, 2004). However, there is mounting evidence that leadership does have an impact on student learning (Leithwood & Levin, 2005) and that understanding teaching in leadership terms can lead to student success (Strodl, 1992). The purpose of this study was to empirically investigate the extent to which specific leadership behaviors (as defined by Kouzes & Posner, 1985, 1997, 2002) practiced by classroom teachers, over and above their normal classroom management strategies and instructional delivery, positively influence students' (a) reaction to the learning environment; (b) acquisition of new knowledge, skills, and abilities; and (c) incorporating this new learning into positive behavioral changes. The study employed Kouzes and Posner's Leadership Practices Inventory (2003) to identify and quantify the leadership behaviors of the subject teachers and an instrument based on the Kirkpatrick model of program evaluation to determine the participating students' reaction, learning, and behavior. Data were collected via survey questionnaires. The study used individual classes as the unit of study and involved 40 teachers and 198 students in 101 classes. Data were analyzed using multiple regression analysis. The study revealed that leadership behaviors (independent variables) had a significant impact on all of the dependent variables (reaction, learning, and behavior). The results obtained from this study provide evidence that developing teachers as leaders can improve student success. The results should also be helpful as school administrators look for innovative ways of improving school and student outcomes as a part of the No Child Left Behind legislation.