Date of Award

Fall 12-2008

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Leadership and Research

Committee Chair

Michael Ward

Committee Member 2

Ronald Styron

Committee Member 3

David E. Lee

Committee Member 4

James T. Johnson


The purpose of this study was to explore the comprehensiveness of educational leadership programs regarding the extent of appropriate business knowledge attained by public school administrators. Portions of the study included a discussion of current licensing practices, academic governance, basic business requirements for leadership and management, and basic financial literacy. A further purpose was to measure the perception of how the inclusion of specific business-oriented graduate education in the certification process might increase the initial success of administrators.

The literature review supported the concept that superintendents understand change management and fiscal responsibility. Survey respondents supported these concepts by indicating the specific need for classes in management and fund accounting. The survey results were somewhat surprising in that superintendents, in general, did not indicate support for the courses of study they took for licensure. Superintendents indicated support for management, marketing, fund accounting, and communications courses in their certification courses.

All of the study hypotheses were rejected. However, hypothesis one: There will be a significant negative relationship between satisfaction with current certification courses and the perception of the need for more graduate business courses, was rejected because the relationship was positive. Post hoc analysis provided one significant relationship between experience and self-reported business and administrative skills from superintendents in districts with >5000 students.