Preparing students to be globally competitive in the 21st century: Exploring educational leaders' global-mindedness and student achievement in North Carolina public high schools Public Deposited

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  • March 19, 2019
  • Sutherland, Susan
    • Affiliation: School of Education, Educational Leadership Graduate Program
  • As globalization asserts a greater presence in our society, schools are faced with ensuring their structure and curriculum are preparing students for the demands of living and working in a new, expanded economy. Schools must prepare students to succeed through an infusion of 21st century skills, while also preparing them to be able to compete and collaborate at an international level. Although teachers have daily and direct contact with students, it is the principal's leadership that provides the vision and focus for the school. The principal's role in initiating and/or sustaining a successful global focus is pivotal to student success; thus, a principal's global-mindedness is potentially a critical factor. According to Hett (1993), high levels of global-mindedness emphasize the development of responsibility, awareness, and appreciation based on global, rather than ethnocentric or national standards. This dissertation examines the relationship between global-mindedness in North Carolina public high school principals and student achievement. Using a mixed methods approach that includes a demographic survey, the Global-Mindedness Survey (GMS), and North Carolina school characteristics data, the ensuing study contributes to the research and findings in global-mindedness, student achievement, and educational leadership. The results are intended to have significant implications for school leaders in terms of identifying the attributes and dimensions necessary for shaping school communities to be better equipped to respond to the challenges and complexities of globalization. This study identifies several variables associated with a principal's global-mindedness. Namely, a principal's gender, race/ethnicity, and travel experience are most strongly related to global-mindedness. The school size, number of fluent languages, and years in education are marginally associated with global-mindedness. However, this study failed to find an association between a principal's global-mindedness as quantified by the GMS and student achievement. Additionally, this study found that principals are still developing their conceptualization of global awareness in the 21st century. The analysis demonstrated the principals' conceptualization was largely grounded in theory rather than experience. There is much work needed to assist these educational leaders in developing/increasing their global-mindedness and the requisite skills to help translate theory into practice.
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Rights statement
  • In Copyright
  • Hartness, Amanda
  • Houck, Eric
  • Oertwig, Sam
  • English, Fenwick
  • Thompson Dorsey, Dana
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School
Graduation year
  • 2015
Place of publication
  • Chapel Hill, NC
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