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A comparative study of self-perceived leadership skills based on gender
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The purpose of this study was to: 1) examine the differences of self-perceived leadership skills between men and women who elected to take a collegiate leadership development course; 2) determine if a relationship existed between women's previous leadership experience and their self-perceived leadership skills; and 3) examine the differences of self-perceived leadership skills between women in an all female educational setting and women in a coeducational setting. A correlational design was used for this study. The procedure followed the pretest-posttest nonequivalent control group design. The sample consisted of students who enrolled in a collegiate leadership development course at Texas A&M University during the Fall semester of 1996. The instrument used, the Leadership Skills Inventory (LSI), measured student's self-perceived leadership skills. The LSI consisted of 21 statements describing various leadership and life skills. Responses were based on a five point Likert-type scale. This study found that men and women who elected to take a collegiate leadership course had the same self-perceived leadership skills prior to and following the course. Unlike previous studies that found women possessed a distinctly different set of leadership skills from men, this study found no differences between the sexes. It was also discovered that the more previous participation a woman had in leadership courses and activities, the stronger she perceived her ability to lead. However, a woman's previous participation in leadership courses and activities had no relationship to her perceived ability to work with groups, make decisions, communicate or understand her self. Following 13 weeks of training, women in the all female section had a stronger perception of their ability to lead, work with groups, make decisions, communicate and understand themselves than the women in the coeducational section. These findings indicated that an all female classroom was superior to a coeducational setting for collegiate women in leadership development. Based on the findings of this study it was recommended that more research be conducted to determine the benefits of gender-specific settings in other types of leadership training programs. Further it was recommended that an all female laboratory section be made available to women enrolled in collegiate leadership development courses.
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Includes bibliographical references: p. 63-67.
Issued also on microfiche from Lange Micrographics.
Thorp, Laurie Granger (1997). A comparative study of self-perceived leadership skills based on gender. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Available electronically from
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