ERIC Number: ED417174
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1997
A Study of Professional Aspirations and Perceived Obstacles: A Case for Administrative Change.
Shultz, Eileen L.; Easter, Linda M.
This study surveyed 170 faculty members at a public, mid-sized eastern university, comparing men's and women's aspirations and perceived obstacles to attaining various levels of executive positions in higher education. The study used the Academic Goals and Aspirations Survey, which requested demographic information regarding rank, status, educational level, department, and years of service. It also examined aspirations, perceptions of obstacles to support, and perceptions of opportunities to achieve administrative and departmental positions. Respondents included 77 females and 93 males representing over 36 campus departments. Results indicated that more women aspired to lower-level administrative positions than men. Aspirations became nearly equal when considering the position of university vice president. Fewer women than men aimed for the office of university president. Most women wanted to serve as a director/coordinator or department chair. Females seemed to perceive the glass ceiling, sensing obstacles that did not affect men in their climb up the career ladder. Females reported homemaking and child care as the toughest social barriers to advancement. Not one male cited family responsibilities as a hindrance to career advancement. Women's perceived institutional barriers included heavy workloads, bureaucracy, higher education requirements and lack of funds to meet them, committee demands, limited tenure tracks, research/publication demands, and the "good old boys" network. Only a small minority of both sexes regarded opportunities for males and females as equal. (Contains 16 references.) (SM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A