Welcome to the NKU Executive Ed.D.Next-Generation Superintendent Effectiveness Standards: A Leader-Scholar Community"21st Century Superintendents - Planning for the Next Gen"
Next Generation Superintendent Effectiveness- A leader Scholar Community
from Lu Young
Welcome to the Next-Gen Superintendent
NKU EdD Executive Cohort
The use of technology to enhance teaching, learning, and assessment as well as to serve as a means to share best practices and scholarly findings has permeated almost every aspect of the P20 education system in the U.S. and abroad. Yet, the culminating experience in graduate programs across the nation -- whether called capstone, thesis, or dissertation -- remains steeped in the centuries-old higher education practice of the typical 5-chapter tome. Dr. Marshall Poe, associate professor of history at the University of Iowa, laments the fundamental problem with scholarly writing of this genre: “The trouble is that they [the public we are trying to reach] generally don't read them.”
As part of a revolutionary graduate program design, Northern Kentucky University (NKU) invited sitting Kentucky superintendents to participate in an executive doctoral cohort. Six superintendents accepted the invitation and began the program in January 2011. Known as the NKU Exec Ed.D. Cohort V, the model boasts several innovative design features including the democratic treatment of both the superintendent-participants and program faculty as learning associates and, perhaps the most revolutionary element, shifting the summative assessment from a one-dimensional, individualized dissertation to a companion dissertation/capstone that pushes learning associates to explore a variety of 21st Century media options including electronic formats and the use of social media. By expanding beyond the limits of the traditional dissertation, program participants have the opportunity to reach a much broader audience without compromising the scholarly standards expected of those who earn the doctorate.
It was our desire to create this learning community through which our primary audience, school superintendents, can learn from us and from one another and have access to relevant, just-in-time resources that will inform their practice in relevant and responsible ways. To that end, our dissertation/capstone features an interactive series of Superintendent Effectiveness Modules made available to new, experienced, and aspiring superintendents who choose to participate as members of an exclusive, on-line leader-scholar community (LSC). All six learning associates collaborated on the overall design and implementation of the LSC site, working individually and collectively to develop the thematic modules. Each module contains a variety of topical resources and supports at the disposal of LSC participants including a repository of electronic resources, exemplar video clips, and a comprehensive annotated bibliography.
The concept is intended to be an iterative process with the capability of ever-expanding modules and the opportunity for participants to be valued contributors. Much like the style and philosophy of Wikipedia, our LSC encourages participants to collaborate with us on the development of the site modules as the modules, in turn, grow organically from the expertise and contributions of participants who, in effect, become fellow learning associates. It then ceases to become an expert-driven model, giving way to a participant-driven one.
In some of the modules, participants will encounter reflective questions. We encourage you to use those questions to self-reflect on the learning you experience through the module or to use those questions with your district staff to generate conversations about the learning.