Role Orientation and Communication Behaviors of Faculty Governance Leaders.Report as inadecuate

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This study, part of the National Data Base on Faculty Involvement in Governance project at the University of Alabama, attempted to profile the role orientations of faculty governance unit leaders, and to determine if those orientations differed under conditions of communication apprehension (how a unit leader interacts with others) or were dependent on the type of institution. Respondents (n=223) were chosen from a random sample of 100 institutions in each of three groups: research universities; teaching-focused institutions, including comprehensive colleges and universities and liberal arts colleges; and community, junior, and technical colleges. Two different communication apprehension instruments were used to determine apprehension levels in oral and written communication. The study found that the majority (65 percent) of faculty governance unit leaders perceived themselves as process-oriented, that is, facilitating the operation of the unit by setting agendas, scheduling meetings, and other activities; thirty-five percent perceived themselves as task-oriented, dealing with specific programs of work or themes. For all three types of institutions, communication apprehension levels were identified in the moderate to normal range, indicating that many governance unit leaders serve out of a sense of responsibility and professional obligation rather than out of a desire to pursue a specific agenda. (Contains 13 references.) (RH)

Descriptors: College Governing Councils, College Planning, Communication Skills, Faculty College Relationship, Faculty Organizations, Faculty Workload, Governance, Higher Education, Participative Decision Making, Policy Formation, Verbal Communication, Writing Difficulties

Author: Miller, Michael T.; Pope, Myron L.


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