Administrators' perspectives of culture at a multicampus community college

Richard Dale Prentiss, Florida International University

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to explore how administrators’ perceived the campus and administrative cultures found on a single campus of a multicampus community college system. A review of the literature revealed that the culture found in higher education institutions contains a high degree of human interactions, has a myriad of cultures, and that individuals play a significant role in the maintenance or the evolution of the cultures present. The study site was Neighborhood Campus which is one campus of a large urban community college system containing a total of eight campuses, Urban College. Kuh’s conventional organizational models served to identify the model on Neighborhood Campus, Levin’s cultural definitions described the campus culture, and cultural definitions from Bergquist and Pawlak formed the framework for the administrative culture. The study was guided by the following research questions: What are the administrators’ perspectives of the campus culture on a community college campus and what are the administrators’ perspectives of the administrative culture on a community college campus? A qualitative case study method was used, data collection included interviews, document and videograph reviews, and observations of administrative meetings. The participants for the interview portion of the study included 10 individuals defined as administrators. ^ The study revealed that administrators’ perspectives of these cultures demonstrated five themes (student-centered, size, location, Hispanics, and family) served as contributors to the campus culture. The administrative culture was supported by six themes (size, team, collaboration, open, Inclusion, and rewards and recognition). ^ The findings revealed three of Kuh’s conventional organizational models (rational, bureaucratic, and collegial models) were seen as being in place at Neighborhood Campus. Levin’s traditional and service cultures were seen in the campus culture with the service culture demonstrating dominance. Using Bergquist and Pawlak’s definitions, components of the collegial, managerial, and developmental cultures appear to be present in the administrative culture with the collegial culture serving as the dominant administrative culture. ^ Through an understanding of these cultures and themes, administrators can provide leadership that is sensitive to these cultures, especially if institutional change is required.^

Subject Area

Education, Community College|Education, Higher Education Administration

Recommended Citation

Richard Dale Prentiss, "Administrators' perspectives of culture at a multicampus community college" (January 1, 2011). ProQuest ETD Collection for FIU. Paper AAI3502118.
http://digitalcommons.fiu.edu/dissertations/AAI3502118

Files over 15MB may be slow to open. For best results, right-click and select "Save as..."

Share

COinS