Digital communication technologies and leadership practice in higher education

Shaheen, Maryam (2018) Digital communication technologies and leadership practice in higher education. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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This study, undertaken within a social constructivist tradition of inquiry, explores educational leaders’ perspectives on e-leadership practices and the ways new information and communications technologies (ICTs) have influenced leadership practices and abilities. I examine the ways in which technology is brought to bear on educational leaders’ roles and responsibilities in a post-secondary educational setting and identify skills and dispositions that are considered important for modern digital educational leaders. Using qualitative elite interviewing research methods, six (6) academic and five (5) administrative leaders working in a university environment were interviewed and the data analyzed using thematic data analysis procedures. The findings show that ICT’s exert a transformative effect on leadership practices by enhancing leaders’ abilities to communicate widely and effectively, improving leadership productivity and providing new avenues for leader accessibility within the organization. The study also explores some of the challenges of leading in a digital environment including the maintenance of an effective professional online and social media presence, effective time management, cyber security issues, and amplified expectations from online constituents and other actors. The data show that leaders feel unprepared to tackle these challenges and feel they require on-going support and training. Today’s educational leaders require effective and sustained professional development in mobilizing ICTs in the leadership practice. Moreover, I suggest that effective technology education in the aforementioned areas must become an essential component of formal leadership education programs in order to prepare educational leaders to keep pace with the changing dynamics of leadership practice.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 13566
Additional Information: Includes bibliographical references (pages 72-81).
Keywords: ICT, Information Technologies, E-Communication, E-Leadership
Department(s): Education, Faculty of
Date: September 2018
Date Type: Submission
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Universities and colleges--Communication systems Educational leadership; College administrators--Effect of technological innovations on; College teachers--Effect of technological innovations on

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