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ERIC Number: ED361794
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1993-Apr-17
Pages: 13
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Creativity and the Department Chairperson: Challenge or Oxymoron?
Litterst, Judith K.
The potential for creativity in the role of department chair is present, but, for too many chairs, creativity is an oxymoron and something to be preserved only in the ranks of the faculty. It would seem fitting to talk about the need for leadership and creativity in the educational setting. However, creativity seems to be overlooked in the literature in leadership in higher education. Various scholars have identified numerous qualities of a creative leader: attitudes; mental skills; communication skills; managerial skills; personal skills; and organizational climate. An informal poll of the academic chairpersons at St. Cloud University concerning what they do to approach their job with creativity yielded responses from only 20% of the chairpersons. Some of their statements were similar to the listing of qualities of a creative leader developed from the search of the literature. One way to nurture creative skills is to recognize that traditional management prescriptions may not fit the educational model. Another way to encourage creativity is to recognize specific blocks (including perceptual, emotional, cultural and environmental, intellectual and expressive, and organizational) to creative thinking and activity, and work to minimize the impact of these blocks. Administrators and institutions need to realize that department chairs are important resources and must help to find ways to maximize conditions for the enhancement of creativity. Chairs themselves must also see their jobs as challenges and as opportunities for personal growth and development. Contains 25 references. (RS)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A