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ERIC Number: EJ818929
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 36
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 128
ISSN: ISSN-0013-161X
Research versus Problem Solving for the Education Leadership Doctoral Thesis: Implications for Form and Function
Archbald, Doug
Educational Administration Quarterly, v44 n5 p704-739 2008
Background: A growing literature is questioning the appropriateness of a research dissertation for practitioners in education doctoral programs. Although this literature persuasively critiques the prevailing theory-research orientation of most programs and theses, it goes little beyond exhorting change and describing extant alternatives in a few programs. There is little attention in this literature to the powerful structures and values holding in place the traditional research dissertation. This literature has not examined in-depth distinctions between research and organizational problem solving and the implications for an alternative thesis design for education leadership doctorates. Findings: This article presents four "qualities of acceptability" that alternatives to the traditional research thesis must address: (a) developmental efficacy, (b) community benefit, (c) stewardship of doctoral values, and (d) distinctiveness of design. The author comments on existing proposals from the standpoint of this framework, noting their strengths and shortcomings; elaborates on five key distinctions between research and organizational problem solving; presents theory and research supporting a thesis based on organizational problem solving; and proposes a specific and distinctive thesis design. (Contains 2 tables and 13 notes.)
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Publication Type: Information Analyses; Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: Practitioners
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A