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ERIC Number: ED565996
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 190
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-3037-1341-5
John Dewey's Experiential Theories and Leadership Preparation in Higher Education
Berman, Larry A.
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, Saint Louis University
The purpose of this study was to investigate the degree to which John Dewey's experiential theories were embedded in leadership preparation curricula in departments of leadership and college student personnel administration at universities in the Midwestern United States. John Dewey, who is considered to be America's greatest philosopher, defined experiential theories as learn by doing, reflections, and environments. For this study, leadership signified the physical and the mental aspects of human behavior. The first part of the problem questioned whether theory and practice functioned independently or as a cohesive unit. The second part of the problem sought to discover if John Dewey, along with his experiential theories, was read, taught, and applied in higher education or had his predominance in post-secondary education vanished. A single research question, which guided this project, asked how are students being prepared for leadership in higher education using John Dewey's experiential theories? The two primary instruments used for the data collection in this multicase qualitative study were interviews and documents. Ten graduate students and two professors participated in the interviews. Five graduate students and a professor were affiliated with the college student personnel administration curriculum at Illinois State University. Five graduate students and a professor were associated with the college student personnel administration program at Marquette University. The graduate students were asked about John Dewey, theory to practice, and experiential theories. The documents, which were constituted as textbooks, chapters, articles, and handouts, were collected from the professors' syllabi. Themes from both instruments emerged, and were cross-analyzed for similarities and differences. The findings confirmed that John Dewey and his experiential theories were either nonexistent or hardly taught in their college student personnel administration programs. Even though Dewey's theories were not prevalent, the graduate students learned by doing, reflected, and were affected by their environments. Implications for practice were grounded in theory for pedagogical and epistemological reasons. Recommendations for this study addressed the contents of Dewey's work, populations, demeanors, a research instrument, and the proposal of Dewey's ideas and publications woven into curricula. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Illinois; Wisconsin