Document Type

Conference Proceeding


Paper presented at the 42nd annual meeting of the Northeastern Educational Research Association, October 19-21, 2011, Rocky Hill, CT.


This study sought to characterize college and university administrator perceptions of organizational culture, their perceptions of themselves versus other campus subcultures, and their perceptions of themselves as members of their campus communities, through an analysis of their use of metaphors. Primary research objectives included the identification of administrator perceptions of the dominant campus culture, their perceptions of related subcultures, their perceptions of group self-consciousness, and the characterization of administrators as a legitimate collegiate subculture. This study employed a qualitative phenomenological design, utilizing metaphor analysis as the framework for individual interviews. The very nature of the problem (i.e. asking administrators to describe their perceptions of their cultural environments) suggests that personal depth interviews provide the best way to make full use of a small sample, eliciting a broad range of rich, descriptive data from each participant. Qualitative research designed to reveal cultural conditions stresses the importance of context, setting, and the subject’s frame of reference (Patton, 2002; Schein, 2010).

Citation/Publisher Attribution

Billups, F.D. (2011, October). Collegiate administrator perceptions of organizational culture: An analysis of metaphors. Paper presented at the Northeast Educational Research Association Annual Conference, Rocky Hill, CT.



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