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Participation of women academician at senior administrative positions in an Iranian University

Mohajeri, Bahieh (2016) Participation of women academician at senior administrative positions in an Iranian University. PhD thesis, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, Faculty of Education.


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Although women’s access to higher education either as students, staffs, and academic members are increasing worldwide, women senior academic administrative positions continue to be underrepresented. Women who are inspired to be senior administrators still encounter numerous challenges to acquire these positions. Literature review revealed that most studies on enhancing women’s participation in senior administrative positions were only focused in developed countries thus the findings may not be applicable to other countries due to several factors such as culture. Therefore, it was vital to study and understand the experiences of Iranian women academicians in senior administrative positions within Iranian cultural context. Specifically, the objectives of this study were to explore opportunities and challenges faced by women administrators in attaining their positions and how they utilized strategies and available resources to overcome the challenges. A qualitative approach using case study design based on the epistemology of social constructivism was applied to explore how women academician navigated their career path to senior academic administrative positions at one Iranian university. Data for this study were gathered from documents, interviews and open–ended questions. Twenty female academicians who are senior administrators at one Iranian university were selected as respondents. The data were analyzed with Nvivo 10 software based on thematic analysis. The researcher endeavored to discover themes which described the real meaning of the respondents’ experiences and perspectives. The findings according to the themes and subthemes were written by grouping similar views. Many of the challenges and opportunities which the women administrators experienced resonate with existing literature from all over the world. Yet, the findings of this study disclosed the distinctive influence of socio-cultural values in the local context on opportunities and challenges faced by the female senior administrators. In addition, their unique strategies and available resources to overcome the challenges they encountered were also highlighted in the findings. The data indicated the evidence of three components; firstly, a strong role of family unit among Iranian women as they embrace their traditionally domestic prescribed roles and their participation in the public spheres; secondly, the organizational masculine culture affects women’s equal access to senior administrative positions and thirdly, women strong reliance on personal qualities and attributes in pursuing administration positions and professional goals in public spheres. Based on the findings, a conceptual framework for the participation of women academicians in senior academic administrative positions in Iranian.universities.was.proposed.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information:Thesis (Ph.D (Pendidikan dan Pembangunan)) - Universiti Teknologi Malaysia, 2016; Supervisors : Dr. Mahani Mokhtar, Assoc. Prof. Dr. Hamid Javdani
Subjects:L Education > LB Theory and practice of education > LB2300 Higher Education
ID Code:84000
Deposited By: Fazli Masari
Deposited On:31 Oct 2019 18:10
Last Modified:05 Nov 2019 12:33

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