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A Grounded Theory Approach to Studying Strategic Planning in Higher Education: A Qualitative Research Methodology Utilizing the Literature Review and Interview
Aponte, Ludy Glenn

2011, Doctor of Philosophy, University of Toledo, Higher Education.

This researcher demonstrates how applied qualitative grounded theory methodology was used in this dissertation to develop a framework to generate future substantive and/or formal theory (objective of the study). He also fulfills his dissertation's dual purpose: The researcher first describes, analyzes, and explains strategic planning in higher education and its general strategy process so that they are better understood. Second, he establishes a base (i.e., framework) for the development of formal theory from one participant interview and its situational, social, and historical contexts using grounded theory. Collectively, these two purposes and the study's objective comprise this dissertation's scope.


It is problematic if faculty members who are stakeholders in strategic planning in higher education understand its general strategy process and are not included in it. Why? Faculty members collectively constitute higher education's key participants in the teaching, research, and service variables essential to its success. Yet no research studies currently exist that explain the relationship between strategic planning in higher education and faculty members who are stakeholders in it. For the researcher, this revealed the complex challenge inherent in his dissertation for developing a framework that would generate a future substantive and/or formal theory. His difficulty is compounded by the research problem: What is the relationship between faculty members who are stakeholders in strategic planning in higher education and other aspects of university policies?

Results from the one interviewed faculty stakeholder generated one theme with three sub themes, two metaphors, three propositions, and two social issues about the process of strategic planning in higher education. Further analysis of this one participant enabled this researcher to develop a ten stage process model for conducting grounded theory analysis. Results fulfill this dissertation's purposes and potentials for significance: (a) to serve as a foundation to generate future formal theory, (b) to help close the gap between higher education research and practice, (c) to aid possible development of new higher education policy, and (d) to contribute new knowledge to the literature.

Lynne Hamer, PhD (Committee Chair)
Dave Meabon, PhD (Committee Member)
Penny Poplin-Gosetti, PhD (Committee Member)
Mary Ellen Edwards, PhD (Committee Member)
308 p.

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Aponte, L. (2011). A Grounded Theory Approach to Studying Strategic Planning in Higher Education: A Qualitative Research Methodology Utilizing the Literature Review and Interview. (Electronic Thesis or Dissertation). Retrieved from https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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Aponte, Ludy. "A Grounded Theory Approach to Studying Strategic Planning in Higher Education: A Qualitative Research Methodology Utilizing the Literature Review and Interview." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. University of Toledo, 2011. OhioLINK Electronic Theses and Dissertations Center. 28 Jul 2015.

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Aponte, Ludy "A Grounded Theory Approach to Studying Strategic Planning in Higher Education: A Qualitative Research Methodology Utilizing the Literature Review and Interview." Electronic Thesis or Dissertation. University of Toledo, 2011. https://etd.ohiolink.edu/

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