Community College, Student Leader Program, Involvement
The purpose of this study was to assess whether participation in a community college student leader program had an effect on the leadership behaviors of students based on five (5) practices measured by a student leadership practices inventory. By assessing these leadership behaviors, the community college was able to determine the effectiveness of the program and ways to improve the program's curriculum. This study addressed the following: 1) whether students who participated in a student leader program in a community college showed significant growth in leadership behaviors; 2) whether the growth in leadership behaviors of students who participated in a student leader program in a community college were significantly different from each other in regard to gender; 3) whether the growth in leadership behaviors of students who participated in a student leader program in a community college were significantly different from each other in regard to age. The student Leadership Practices Inventory (LPI) developed by Kouzes and Posner (2002) was used as the main instrument in this study. The student Leadership Practices Inventory (LPI) is a questionnaire with thirty (30) behavioral statements--six (6) for each of The Five Practices. The population of this study consisted of 62 student leaders who were participants in a student leader program at a community college. A pre LPI was given to 62 student leaders in the beginning of the school term. A post LPI was given to 62 student leaders at the end of the school term. Thirteen of the original student leaders dropped out of the program and were replaced by new student leaders. Thus, the total number of useable inventories for data input in this study was 49; this yielded a 79% return rate. This study supports the research that students who were involved in a leadership program gained leadership behaviors. In comparing the student leaders' pretest and posttest scores of the LPI, it showed that there was a significant difference in each leadership behavior. These leadership behaviors were: Challenging the Process, Inspiring a Shared Vision, Enabling Others to Act, Modeling the Way, and Encouraging the Heart. The results of this study also showed no significant difference in the student leaders' scores in the LPI in relation to the student's age group. According to Astin (1993), the student's age at the time of college entry was not significantly associated with changes in Leadership scores. This evidence supports the argument that increases in leadership skills during undergraduate years is associated with the college experience rather than the student's maturation. There were no significant differences between the male and female student leaders in regard to the five leadership practices with the exception of the leadership practice Challenging the Process. In this study, the male student leaders scored higher, 24.79, than the female student leaders, 22.37, in Challenging the Process. The focus group in this study highlighted the leadership behaviors the student leaders gained as a result of their involvement in the student leader program. Not only did the students grow in the leadership behaviors measured by the LPI, they also gained other leadership skills. In regard to their growth as a student leader, the students felt that they grew in many different areas. The opportunity allowed them to network with students, faculty, administration and staff, and gain leadership skills. These leadership skills included: listening skills, communication skills, stress management, multitasking and customer service. The students also believed in the importance of taking initiative, practicing patience and developing others.
Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)
College of Education
Curriculum and Instruction
Length of Campus-only Access
Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)
Torres, Chanda, "Leadership Behaviors Gained As A Result Of Involvement In A Community College Student Leader Program" (2008). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 3529.