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Factors Motivating Teachers to Aspire to the Principalship: Veterans vs. Beginners
Unformatted Document Text:  Proposal for the 32 nd Annual Meeting of the Mid-Western Educational Research Association Abstract for Proposal100-150 words; use clear, precise language, which can be understood by readers outside your discipline Nearly two decades have passed since research was conducted in Ohio to determine if factors motivating teachers to aspire to the principalship were different for beginning principals compared to veteran principals. Prefaced by an extensive literature review, interviews with private firms assisting districts search for principals, and conversations with practicing superintendents, the study isolated ten motivating factors, and then determined if there was significant difference in the level of motivation for each factor between the beginners and the veterans. This study will look at whether the same factors still exist today, whether the level of motivation for each factor differs between beginners and veterans, and whether there are significantly different factors providing motivation to aspire to the principalship today. Results will provide both new and confirming information for school district administrators and college and university departments of educational administration that can improve both the quantity and quality of principal candidates. Summary…should explicitly address as many of the following as appropriate, preferably in this order: (a) objectives, goals, or purposes; The purpose of the study is to determine if the level of motivation toward factors influencing teachers to aspire to the principalship today are significantly different when comparing beginning principals’ and veteran principals’ motivations. Today’s veterans were beginners when a similar study was completed two decades ago. A second purpose is to determine if today’s teachers aspiring to the principalship are motivated by very different factors from those identified in the earlier study. (b) perspectives or theoretical framework The theoretical framework for the study was derived from the concept of motivation in general. Ten factors motivating teachers to aspire to the principalship were eventually isolated using the following logical progression. First, three groups of motivational theories were studied: need-reductions theories, expectancy-value theories, and mastery and growth theories. Next the author completed an extensive analysis of Maslow’s hierarchy-of-needs theory of motivation, which eventually provided the specific motivation frame of reference for the study. Then the author looked at motivation related to career choice. Under this category, a number of motivators that contribute to the development of aspirants – that is, teachers who aspire to the principalship – were described and analyzed. These motivators were classified in two categories: (a) personal motivators, and (b) motivators in the school setting or school environment (maybe more accurately, motivators created by people within the school environment). It is these motivators that seem to propel aspirants to take action. For example, these motivators move aspirants to take on quasi-administrative tasks and projects in their schools; they cause aspirants

Authors: Cook, Larry.
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Proposal for the 32
nd
 Annual Meeting of the Mid-Western Educational Research Association
Abstract for Proposal
100-150 words; use clear, precise language, which can be understood by readers outside your 
discipline
Nearly two decades have passed since research was conducted in Ohio to determine if factors 
motivating teachers to aspire to the principalship were different for beginning principals 
compared to veteran principals.  Prefaced by an extensive literature review, interviews with 
private firms assisting districts search for principals, and conversations with practicing 
superintendents, the study isolated ten motivating factors, and then determined if there was 
significant difference in the level of motivation for each factor between the beginners and the 
veterans.  This study will look at whether the same factors still exist today, whether the level of 
motivation for each factor differs between beginners and veterans, and whether there are 
significantly different factors providing motivation to aspire to the principalship today.  Results 
will provide both new and confirming information for school district administrators and college 
and university departments of educational administration that can improve both the quantity and 
quality of principal candidates.  
Summary
…should explicitly address as many of the following as appropriate, preferably in this order:
(a) objectives, goals, or purposes;
The purpose of the study is to determine if the level of motivation toward factors influencing 
teachers to aspire to the principalship today are significantly different when comparing beginning 
principals’ and veteran principals’ motivations.  Today’s veterans were beginners when a similar 
study was completed two decades ago.  A second purpose is to determine if today’s teachers 
aspiring to the principalship are motivated by very different factors from those identified in the 
earlier study. 
(b) perspectives or theoretical framework
The theoretical framework for the study was derived from the concept of motivation in general. 
Ten factors motivating teachers to aspire to the principalship were eventually isolated using the 
following logical progression.  First, three groups of motivational theories were studied: need-
reductions theories, expectancy-value theories, and mastery and growth theories.  Next the 
author completed an extensive analysis of Maslow’s hierarchy-of-needs theory of motivation, 
which eventually provided the specific motivation frame of reference for the study.  Then the 
author looked at motivation related to career choice.  Under this category, a number of 
motivators that contribute to the development of aspirants – that is, teachers who aspire to the 
principalship – were described and analyzed.  These motivators were classified in two categories: 
(a) personal motivators, and (b) motivators in the school setting or school environment (maybe 
more accurately, motivators created by people within the school environment).  It is these 
motivators that seem to propel aspirants to take action.  For example, these motivators move 
aspirants to take on quasi-administrative tasks and projects in their schools; they cause aspirants 


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