Birth order effects on leadership style in school administrators: The relationship between two-dimensional educational leadership theory and Adlerian theory.
Committee ChairMedina, Marcello Jr.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis study investigated the relationship between birth order position and the two-dimensional leadership styles, initiating structure and consideration, in elementary public school administrators in the State of Arizona in correlation with Alfred Adler's (1930) Theory of Birth Order. Adler asserted: (1) that first borns acquire leadership traits emphasizing rules, authority, power, independence, traditions, organization, and a concern with status and (2) later borns acquire leadership traits emphasizing social activities, a sense of community, and warmth in individual and group cooperation, thus, less emphasis on authority and rules. Therefore, the first born is more likely to be structure-oriented, while the later born is more likely to be consideration-oriented in leadership style. The purpose of this study was to determine whether a difference would be found between first and later born elementary public school administrators in the State of Arizona and the two-dimensional educational leadership styles, structure and consideration. No previous research has examined birth order effects on leadership style in school administrators, and few studies have examined different occupational groups. Controversial findings by Chemers (1970), Dagenais (1979), and Greene (1987) indicated that patterns do not hold across different occupational groups. This study contributes to the need for further research and a stronger theoretical argument regarding the influence of birth order on leadership style. The subjects for this investigation were 232 public elementary school principals. Data were collected and analyzed using Fleishman's (1969) Leadership Opinion Questionnaire (LOQ) and the Personal Leadership Data Form. Through the use of descriptive statistics, t-tests, and correlations, it was determined that there were no significant differences between first and later borns in structure and consideration. Thus, concurring with Dagenais (1979), birth order did not seem to be related to the two-dimensional leadership styles. The findings of this study do not support Adler's (1930) Theory of Birth Order.
Degree ProgramEducational Administration and Higher Education