Academic Leadership Journal


Ever increasing opportunities-and demands-for partnerships between P-12 and higher education have created the impetus for deans of education to become collaborative leaders. Deans serve a critical institutional role in charting the direction of a school or college (Rosser, Johnsrud, & Heck, 2003), and there is ample research on the general roles and responsibilities and leadership behaviors of education deans that focus on the biographical, structural, and contextual factors affecting their work (e.g., Bowen, 1995; Bright & Richards, 2001; Bruess, McClean, & Sun, 2003; Clifford & Guthrie, 1988; Gardner, 1992; Gmelch, 2002; Gmelch, Wolverton, Hopkins, Merz, & Anderson, 1999; Howey & Zimpher, 1990; Huffman-Joley, 1992; Jackson, 2000; Martin, 1993; Morsink, 1987; Riggs & Huffman, 1989; Thiessen & Howey, 1998; Zimpher, 1995). However, there is scant research on the collaborative methods and approaches that education deans are finding essential to do their job.