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Date of Award


Document Type

Dissertation - Pacific Access Restricted

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)


Educational Administration and Leadership

First Advisor

Beatrice Lingenfelter

First Committee Member

Dennis Brennan

Second Committee Member

Fred Muskal

Third Committee Member

Antiono Borba


While some attention has been paid to organizational culture, there has been a paucity of research relating specifically to: (a) how first year assistant principals in the high school setting describe and assess their schools' organizational cultures, (b) how they utilize the information gained from their assessments of their schools' cultures, and (c) their perceptions of how they know whether they have been successful in adapting or assimilating into their schools' cultures. The purpose of this research study was to identify how first year high school assistant principals describe and assess their schools' organizational cultures and how these administrators utilized the information gained during this assessment. Data were gathered through a total of eleven interviews of assistant principals who completed their first year in 2002/03 and whose high schools were located in Regions Three, Four, Seven, and Nine, as designated by the Association of California School Administrators. Data analysis was conducted simultaneously during and after the data collection process. During the data analysis, the researcher attempted to identify common themes among the data gathered from the interviews. In summary, all of the assistant principals indicated that they described and assessed their schools' organizational cultures during their first year. Nine out of the eleven indicated they utilized the information gained from their assessments. All but one of the assistant principals reported that they had adapted and/or assimilated into the schools' organizational cultures during their first year. It is this researcher's contention that first year assistant principals need to be able to describe and assess their schools' organizational cultures so that they can better fulfill the roles and responsibilities of their positions. Mentor and staff development programs need to address not only why it is necessary for assistant principals to describe and assess their schools' organizational cultures, but also how to use the information gained from the assessment.




9780542000188 , 0542000180

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