A Quantitative Study of the Presidential Search Process and Position Longevity in Community Colleges Page: 14
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subgroup, a continuous variable was created based on the responses to
Question 14 which inquired about "number of years you held your last position."
Using this variable, a Chi Square was planned to be used if judged necessary.
Limitations of the Study
Prevailing methods of presidential searches at the time of hiring might have
actually been an intervening variable. For presidents holding in their present positions
for a decade or longer, current hiring techniques involving on-line searches, electronic
resumes, etc. may not have been available.
To partially mitigate this limitation, mirror questions regarding the presidents'
immediately previous position were asked including the position title. For those that
indicate that they were also previously a president, results of these additional questions
were analyzed as a subgroup. The length of tenure could then be analyzed within data
groupings (previous tenure by selection process and current tenure by selection
process). This process was similar to Padilla's (1998) concept of total tenure versus
completed tenure, but in that premise, the tenure of the current president and that of the
immediately previous president were considered. For this study, the tenure of current
presidents was considered as them holding their current positions. Information from
their immediately previous positions was compared as separate variables if that position
was also as a president or equivalent.
One limitation might relate to current and previous laws and other external
regulations controlling the hiring practices of the college and universities involved in the
study. While the researcher can use statistical controls for some institutional
differences which might influence the freedom institutions have in their hiring practices,
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Howells, Constance L. A Quantitative Study of the Presidential Search Process and Position Longevity in Community Colleges, dissertation, December 2011; Denton, Texas. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc103329/m1/22/: accessed May 26, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .