ERIC Number: ED421905
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1998
Critical Incidents Impacting the Role and Development of the Academic Department Chair, 1870-1925.
Vacik, Stephen M.; Miller, Michael T.
Despite contemporary efforts to develop lists of department chair tasks and responsibilities, there is no historical foundation available for understanding the department chair position. This study was designed to identify the critical incidents and factors which impacted on the development of the department chair position in higher education from 1870 to 1925. Delphi survey questionnaires were mailed to 15 scholars specializing in the study of department or unit chairs; 13 were returned. The study found that: (1) respondents agreed most strongly that federal legislation in vocational education, which forced greater compartmentalization of responsibilities, worked to formalize the chair role; (2) the second most important factor impacting the chair role was the increased attention to fund raising and the emphasis on private endowments; (3) respondents indicated moderate to high levels of knowledge concerning the historical development of the chair position; and (4) overall, 29 factors, organized as 5 contextual themes, were identified as being related to the chair position: management and personnel, curricular issues, federal involvement, technological advances, and revenue and funding. A list of participants, their publications, and the 29 factors are appended. (Contains 13 references.) (MAB)
Descriptors: Administrative Organization, College Administration, Department Heads, Economic Factors, Educational History, Federal Legislation, Higher Education, Instructional Leadership, Political Influences, Questionnaires, School Business Relationship, School Organization, Social History, Social Influences
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A