Leadership Styles in Institutions of Higher Learning Paper Select one particular area in an academic environment in higher education where a leader might b

Leadership Styles in Institutions of Higher Learning Paper Select one particular area in an academic environment in higher education where a leader might be called upon to redirect the university (for example, accreditation, fundraising, or expansion). Then, research the changes in this particular area in the past five years using peer-reviewed journals, web sources, and other scholarly readings as sources. Prepare a paper that addresses the following:

Consider the types of leadership styles a leader in higher education might have to undergo to be successful in this area in today’s academic setting.
Identify and summarize two processes that must be properly lead within a higher education institution.
Recommend two methods that a leader may use to help motivate students, faculty, and staff within an institution and provide a motivational theory that supports these methods.

Support your assignment with at least five scholarly resources. In addition to these specified resources, other appropriate scholarly resources, including older articles, may be included.

Length: 5-7 pages, not including title and reference pages

Your assignment should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts presented in the course by providing new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your response should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards.

Two suggested references:

1. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LWd-Mf6_ZLA

2. Attached Issues and Challenges in Higher Education
Leadership: Engaging for Change
Glenys Drew
Queensland University of Technology
It is proposed from this study that engaging productively with others to achieve change
has never been more critical in educational environments, such as universities. Via
semi-structured interviews with a cohort of senior leaders from one Australian
university, this paper explores their perceptions of the key issues and challenges facing
them in their work. The study found that the most significant challenges centred
around the need for strategic leadership, flexibility, creativity and change-capability;
responding to competing tensions and remaining relevant; maintaining academic
quality; and managing fiscal and people resources. Sound interpersonal engagement,
particularly in terms of change leadership capability, was found to be critical to
meeting the key challenges identified by most participants. In light of the findings from
the sample studied some tentative implications for leadership and leadership
development in university environments are proposed, along with suggestions for
further empirical exploration.
The increased complexity of the leadership role in the higher education environment
has gained attention as a subject for study over the past ten years (Coaldrake &
Stedman, 1998, 1999; Cohen, 2004; Knight & Trowler, 2001; Mead, Morgan & Heath,
1999; Ramsden, 1998). The list of challenges grows longer as university core business
increases in complexity (Barnett, 2004; Drew, 2006; Hanna, 2003; Marshall, Adams,
Cameron, & Sullivan, 2000; Marshall, 2007; Middlehurst, 2007; Scott, Coates &
Anderson, 2008; Snyder, Marginson & Lewis, 2007). This paper discusses some of the
points of tension for academic and administrative staff pertaining to leadership in
higher education. It reports the results of a qualitative research study undertaken to
identify what a sample of emergent and new senior leaders in one Australian
university considered to be the major challenges for universities, and hence for
The Australian Educational Researcher, Volume 37, Number 3, December 2010
leaders in universities, over the next five years. The findings suggest implicitly and
explicitly the centrality of sound engagement capabilities in meeting the challenges
identified. The paper commences with a review of literature relating to perceived
challenges in university leadership.
Major challenges
Researchers and workers in the field have explored a canvass of intersecting and
potentially competing challenges impacting on academic staff and academic
administrators. A number of these challenges relate to engagement of different kinds.
For example, some commentators cite the changed and differentiated ways in which
students engage with the university (Cooper, 2002; Longden, 2006; Snyder et al., 2007;
Szekeres, 2006). Szekeres (2006), Whitchurch (2006) and others consider the effects
of change relating to administration and general staff experiences in universities.
Offering a quality higher education experience fit for the needs of both the individual
student and society (Longden, 2006) might be accepted broadly as a concerted goal
of university educators. However, reality may see academic leaders charting a course
between different, even opposing, paradigms such as “student as scholar” focusing
on fostering enquiry, scholarship and life-long learning, and “student as consumer”
where students seek a relatively expedient, efficient, vocationally oriented
educational experience. Snyder et al. (2007) and Giroux (2005) note the oppositional
yet intersecting forces of mass education and of sound pedagogical principles in
higher education, with the student as collaborator and critical reflector on the one
hand, and, primarily, proactive consumer, on the other.
Other commentators point to the challenge for academics to partner with cognate
disciplines, industry, commerce and government, creating linkages in order to compete
for industry-based funding and undertake research and development (Stiles, 2004;
Whitchurch, 2006). Here, the notion of academic as independent thinker and
researcher vies with the more pragmatic orientation of what Whitchurch (2006, p. 167)
terms the “business enterprise project”. An enterprise or business manager may preside
over a “communication web of [parties such as] directors of research, academic staff,
and external partners”, requiring an ability to “synthesise academic and business
agendas” (Whitchurch, 2006, p. 167). Stiles (2004) sees the most effective leaders in
education leadership as those who repudiate boundaries to engage in innovative
solutions. The recent study of themes and issues identified from academic leaders
surveyed in Australian universities confirmed that relationship-building qualities of
engagement are most potent in leadership roles (Scott et al., 2008).
Further writers suggest that partnering around a common sense of vision is vital in
the increasingly complex environment of academic leadership (Hanna, 2003; Yielder
& Codling, 2004). However, in an environment of potentially differentiated agenda,
58 •
background, skill and knowledge bases it is not an easy matter to foster the quality
of strategic engagement that can build unity of purpose. Yet it is effort worth taking.
Indeed, Snyder et al. (2007) state that complexity in the interplay of different
approaches, paradigms and overlapping influences in education leadership are as
interesting as the identification of the multiple paradigms themselves.
Over the past decade tensions have arisen between delivering on sound principles of
pedagogy and research and the necessity to create efficiencies in a global
environment of mass education (Coaldrake & Stedman, 1999; Meek & Wood, 1997;
Pratt & Poole, 1999; Ramsden, 1998; Szekeres, 2006). Studies in the United Kingdom
have shown that downward pressure resultant from efficiency gains “applied year on
year by government” (Longden, 2006, p. 179) has resulted in higher education
providers “opting for either larger classes or reduced contact time, or a combination
of both” (Longden, 2006, p. 179). While the global higher education environment
suffers from “resource reduction, increased stress and increased expectations”
(Szekeres, 2006, p 141), collaborative engagement with industry is increasingly vital
in securing research funds and in enacting research (Coaldrake & Stedman, 1998;
Drew, 2006). We see pockets of educational leaders sharing resources, ideas and
practices to find more effective, streamlined ways of supporting learning, simply
because so many of the challenges are the same.
The need to navigate change and adapt is widespread. Barnett (2004), Hanna (2003)
and others point to the challenge of leading within uncertainty in the higher
education environment, which involves the courage to take action when the longerterm way ahead is unclear. Not surprisingly, it has been suggested that a capacity to
support and develop leaders capable of handling complexity, engaging people in
vision, partnering effectively and leading through change is “not a luxury but a
strategic necessity” for today’s universities (Fulmer, Gibbs, & Goldsmith, 2000, p. 59).
Of change leadership, Kotter (2007) sees the ability to guide change as the ultimate
test of a leader.
The theoretical framework for the study follows the ideas of John Adair and his
Action-Centred Leadership Model discussed by Middlehurst (2007) and outlined in
Adair’s book, Training for Leadership (1968). Middlehurst argues that John Adair’s
model, with its interlinked foci on achieving the task, building and maintaining the
team and developing the individual are key dimensions of leadership applicable to
the university environment. Indeed, Middlehurst credits Adair’s ideas in relation to this
model and Adair’s subsequent work as ultimately spawning the formation of the
United Kingdom Leadership Foundation. The key feature of the model and its
application is its emphasis on the personal, human dimension, in each of the three
foci. Middlehurst (2007) strongly argues the importance of taking account of this
dimension in exploring all of the challenges of practice and development in the
university leadership setting. Hence, the model, although dated, is a useful reference
point for the study. Precisely, this personal, human dimension was found to be an
important consideration in exploring key issues and challenges in the empirical study.
The brief scan of education leadership issues confirmed the researcher’s interest to
conduct a qualitative study to discover what a group of new leaders (having held their
roles for one to four years) in one Australian university saw as the key challenges that
they faced over the next five years in their roles. The study sought to discover the
drivers and influences bearing upon the university leadership role which would
appear to have challenging implications for leadership practice and development. For
this purpose, in this study, a sample group of university academic and administrative
leaders were interviewed.
The focus of this study was an investigation of a cohort of mid to senior level
university leaders’ perceptions on what they saw as the main challenges over the next
five years for the Australian tertiary sector and, hence, for themselves as individual
leaders. Semi-structured interviews were held with eighteen participants, all of whom
were part of a “by invitation” accelerated succession leadership program at an
Australian university. The university had acknowledged the need for leadership
succession planning in recognition of age-related attrition anticipated globally over
the ensuing five years (Jacobzone, Cambois, Chaplain, & Robine, 1998; Yielder &
Codling, 2004).
Senior and near senior academic and administrative staff completed the development
program over three years – one cohort per year – totalling forty-five staff in all. The
program comprised eight half-day sessions over a period of one year. At the end of
the third year, participants were asked if they would be interested in participating in
the interviews. The offer of invitation to participate in the study was made to all fortyfive participants of the succession leadership program cohorts at the same time on the
conclusion of the third year/cohort of the program. A total of eighteen, eleven females
and seven males, participated in the interviews. Ten of those participants held
academic supervisory roles and eight held administrative supervisory roles. This
breakdown was typical of the gender and role type breakdown for the forty-five
participants who undertook the succession leadership program over the three
cohorts. In signing off on nominations, the Vice-Chancellor had paid attention to
achieving reasonable balance across gender and role type dimensions, for example,
overall. Reasonable balance was achieved, with, overall, marginally more women
than men, and marginally more academic than administrative staff, taking part in the
program over the three cohorts. The types of roles occupied by the eighteen
60 •
participants, listed in terms of multiple to single representation in role type, were:
heads of school; associate professors; faculty administration managers; information
technology project managers; faculty postgraduate studies co-ordinator/ academic;
undergraduate studies co-ordinator/academic; senior supervisor (administrative) in
information technology, senior supervisor (administrative) in the office of research,
head of research institute/professor; and an information technology research
professor. Typically, participants had held their roles for between one and four years.
Hour-long semi-structured interviews with each participant were held to gather data.
The following open question posed at the interview was provided to participants
approximately one week before the interview. “What do you see as the most
significant challenges for university leaders over the next five years?” The interviews
were held as conversations with little structure other than to encourage interviewees
to provide their views frankly. Qualitative in-depth interviewing based on sound
ontological and epistemological principles, and tied to a specific research question
(Mason, 2002) characterised the investigation. This methodology, where interview
conversations with participants are held in an environment where participants feel
comfortable to provide their views, is described by Silverman (2000) as the “gold
standard” methodology in qualitative research.
A laptop computer was used by the researcher to record participants’ responses.
These responses were confirmed with participants individually after the interviews.
Data analysis took the form of constant comparative analysis (Cavana, Delahaye, &
Sekaran, 2001) whereby themes were identified and coded as they surfaced. As new
themes emerged, these were compared with the previous ones and were regrouped
with similar themes. If a new meaning unit emerged, a new theme was formed
(Maykut & Morehouse, 1994). The thematic analysis also noted any differences
observed between the comments of academic and administrative participants,
respectively. While the study was set in Australia it is anticipated that the findings may
have implications for other university settings given some similarities in the higher
education environment globally.
Findings and Discussion
The most significant challenges with major implications for contemporary university
leaders, in the view of the group, clustered around the following five themes:
• Fiscal and people resources.
• Flexibility, creativity and change-capability.
• Responding to competing tensions and remaining relevant.
• Maintaining academic quality.
• Effective strategic leadership.
While “maintaining academic quality” was identified mainly by academic staff, the
remaining four themes reflected the ideas of both administrative and academic staff.
The discussion that follows considers these themes, reflecting the most frequently
cited key challenges. Following that discussion, note is taken of participants’ views
which may be said to have disagreed with the majority view; in other words, who
cited as their key challenge an item which was not cited by other participants, or by
one other participant only.
Fiscal and people resource issues
Competing for resources, the amount of time taken to gain funds, dealing with paperwork
and compliance issues, and concerns at recruiting and retaining quality staff were cited as
key challenges by academic staff in particular. This is not surprising given reported reduced
government funding and increased monitoring accountabilities experienced by universities
in recent decades (Cohen, 2004; Knight & Trowler, 2001; Ramsden, 1998). Concern was
expressed at the need for new skills as people in leadership roles in universities are not
necessarily experienced in work associated with attracting funds, while perceived increases
to the bureaucratic burden sit somewhat uncomfortably on academic shoulders.
One academic participant commented on the amount of time spent trying to gain funds
and said that “doing this [funding acquisition] part of the role effectively” was a key
challenge. Consistent with the projections of Coaldrake and Stedman (1998), concern at
resource constraints in the face of high academic workloads and increased monitoring
and reporting requirements was an issue for most of the academics interviewed. This
concern was cited by administrative senior staff as well as by academic participants.
Participants’ comments included the following (note that new paragraphs denote
comments from different participants):
The challenge is working smarter not harder. The . . . significant challenge
is to realise that the university sector is changing and that sources of
income are coming more from research . . . and hence our focus, primarily,
is supporting that. (Administrative senior staff member)
We have to learn to . . . make more positive overtures to government.
We have to be cleverer about how we do that. (Academic senior staff
Individually, the challenge is trying to achieve unrealistic expectations
about having the resources to do what is required. (Academic senior
staff member)
62 •
Indeed, the Bradley Review (Høj, 2008) asserts that strictures represented by reduced
resources have impaired universities’ capacity to make their utmost contribution to
society. Consistent with Hanna (2003) and Knight and Trowler (2001), competing for
scarce resources was seen as increasingly driving the academic agenda, and as
ultimately forging a binary divide between research and teaching. One administrative
leader said:
I think we will see the tertiary system split again in Australia. I’m not
sure whether it will be split along the lines of research or teaching. The
“pie” stays the same but the money becomes scarcer, so we have to
streamline what we can . . . the implication for the leader is that you are
always doingmore with less.
Two out of the eighteen participants specifically foresaw that reduced funding would
forge a bifurcation between research and teaching in universities, as, in their view,
aiming for excellence in both research and teaching may become problematic
because of limited resources. Concern at scarcity of resources extended to concern at
recruiting and retaining the right people. As identified earlier, the contemporary
leadership mandate extends beyond leadership in research and teaching to include
community outreach supported by management of quality, information, finance and
physical and human resources (Marshall et al., 2000; Snyder et al., 2007).
A number of academic participants expressed concern that lack of certainty about
ongoing funding for projects inhibited their capacity to enlist postgraduate students.
While staff retention and succession planning were critical to the research effort,
planning staff resources adequately was jeopardised by an inability to offer other than
limited contract opportunities. Participants commented:
We want to achieve things and we have to spend money to get outcomes
such as research student numbers . . . but if we don’t have the money for
the scholarship we lose that potential income.
For leaders, a big challenge is the difficulty of retaining good staff
because of limited contract opportunities; managing with declining
budgets; being able adequately to recognise staff . . .
For the sector . . . it is getting people with right skill sets. Skills shortage
is everywhere.
The comments reflect the complexities of building a culture of scholarship along
sound educational principles in the face of an increased compliance agenda,
increased government intervention and relative skills shortage (Drew, 2006; Rochford,
2006). Nonetheless, participants’ comments overall clearly demonstrated a positive
spirit. Positivity and openness to new ways of thinking were evident in their body
language and verbal expression. One participant said:
We have to have the courage to explore options and take risks.
From another:
It means bringing in different people who are not like us and allowing
them to “be”.
The challenges identified were seen as requiring an ability to extend outwards and
operate flexibility. Cohen (2004) and Hanna (2003) agree that capabilities to streamline
processes, adapt and innovate are critical in the current complex university leadership
The need for flexibility, innovation and change-readiness
Views of academic and administrative leaders (participants) were equally…
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