Lynne Panega

Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Saban, Joseph M.

Degree Name

Ed.D. (Doctor of Education)

Legacy Department

Department of Leadership, Educational Psychology and Foundations


School administrators--Training of--United States; Positive psychology--United States


As schools across our nation continue to struggle with an increasing shortage of effective school administrators, educational institutions and leadership development programs must find additional strategies to assess and further develop quality leaders. Recognizing the need to build leadership capacity and effectiveness, this quantitative research study linked effective leadership and character traits to the emerging field of positive psychology. Founded on the research conducted by Martin Seligman, a pioneer in positive psychology, the 24 signature strengths which represent character and personality traits were linked to effective superintendent leadership. The research study targeting National Board Certified teachers asked respondents to assess the degree to which they valued the signature strengths in their superintendents and the degree to which they perceived their superintendents as possessing the signature strengths. Through comprehensive analysis, the data revealed significant discrepancies between valued and perceived signature strengths which have implications for leadership development and hiring practices. Additionally, the data obtained through this quantitative study were aggregated by gender, years of teaching experience, grade level taught, and type of district, and leaves room for future studies targeting positive psychology and effective leadership.


Includes bibliographical references (pages [152]-156).


xv, 156 pages




Northern Illinois University

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