PRINCIPALS' THINKING BEHAVIORS AND ANALYTICAL STRATEGIES IN DECISION MAKING

ANTHONY JOHN DEDE, Fordham University

Abstract

This study sought to determine and compare high and low classifications of New York elementary school principals' thinking interests and their perceptions of the degree of importance and extent of use of selected analytical strategies in decision making. Moreover, an attempt was made to ascertain whether significant interrelationships existed among the variables of thinking interests and the principals' perceptions of the degree of importance and extent of use of selected analytical strategies. Finally, this study sought to determine whether significant relationships existed between the variables of principals' perceptions of the degree of importance and extent of use of selected analytical strategies and each of the variables of sex, years of experience, school size and number of administrative credits.^ The subjects of the study consisted of 162 principals. The instruments used were the Inventory of Thinking Interests and the Analytical Decision Behavior Scale.^ The major conclusions of the study were: (1) As a result of the ratings of medium importance and occasionally or higher use, it was concluded that analysis was a viable tool that was valued and used by New York City elementary school principals in making decisions. (2) It was concluded that Baratta's model of analysis, the Seven Analytical A's, was valid for describing seven aspects of the analytical process in decision making. (3) It was concluded that the most prominent analytical strategies involved the analysis of planning, evaluation and values when deciding. (4) It was concluded that there were few significant differences between the high and low classifications of the thinking interest groups and the strategies. Moreover, the high and low divergent interest groups rated the strategies more differently for importance and use than the other interest groups. (5) It was concluded that if a particular Analytical A received a high rating for importance, it would receive a similar high rating for use. (6) It was concluded that experience and school size had an influence on the degree of importance and extent of use of selected analytical strategies in decision making.^ It was recommended that Baratta's model of analysis should be employed as a conceptual model in investigating the decision making process in schools above the elementary level. Moreover, principals should consider the influence of other motivating factors, in addition to thinking interests, on their decision making behavior. It was further recommended that the decision process was a valid area to investigate and should be further studied through the use of case studies or simulated problems as identified in the Analytical Decision Behavior Scale. It was further recommended that principals become more aware of the strategies they employ in decision making.^ The following were recommended for further research: (1) A study of the analytical process using other problems and subproblems, again using as a model Baratta's conceptualization, the Seven Analytical A's. (2) A study to investigate other psychological variables to determine their influence on decision making. (3) An examination of other demographic and personal background variables to determine their influence on analysis in decision making. ^

Subject Area

Educational administration

Recommended Citation

DEDE, ANTHONY JOHN, "PRINCIPALS' THINKING BEHAVIORS AND ANALYTICAL STRATEGIES IN DECISION MAKING" (1980). ETD Collection for Fordham University. AAI8020981.
http://fordham.bepress.com/dissertations/AAI8020981

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