A principal in transition: an autoethnography
MetadataShow full item record
This research represents a highly personalized account of the complexities, interpretations, and reflections of a principal in transition from one elementary school to another elementary school in the same district. Using myself as the subject and the researcher in the social context of an elementary school provided the impetus for this self-study. Through an insider's vantage point, I have chronicled and traced the experiences of my own administrative transition using the qualitative methodology of autoethnography. This genre of qualitative research brings the reader closer to the subculture studied through the experiences of the author. While every campus and district has its own unique culture and environment, the introspection and evaluation provided by the methodology of autoethnography greatly facilitates an understanding of the processes of transition. The experiences I have encountered, the problems I face, and the interpretations derived from them will strengthen my own practice as a public school administrator and provide insight into the ever-changing administrative position called the principalship. Data gathering consisted of a reflexive journal, my personal calendar, faculty agendas, staff memos, and reflective analysis. At the completion of the school year common strands, key attributes, and coding of the data served to provide retrospective insights. These research tools were used to capture the experiences of my administrative transition. The results of this study were expressed in a personal narrative that comprises Chapters IV through VI. Chapters I through III present a traditional dissertation model that includes the introduction, review of literature, and research methodology. Chapter VII offers recommendations, a discussion of the findings and concluding remarks.
Dethloff, Carl Henry (2005). A principal in transition: an autoethnography. Doctoral dissertation, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from