My Dissertation

With the bound copies now available in the Southern Seminary and Campbellsville Univ. libraries, a few folks on facebook have asked for an online version of my dissertation. If you want it, here it is.  But I warn you, this is not life-altering stuff.  It is a study in Christian higher education and a rather technical one at that.

Read with caution.

Topic: Models of Academic Governance and Institutional Power in Southern Baptist Related Liberal Arts Colleges and Universities.

Garrison – Michael Shane (pdf version)


The purpose of this descriptive-quantitative study was to examine which models of academic governance are practiced in Southern Baptist related liberal arts colleges and universities.  Special attention was given to the distribution of institutional power among seventeen campus leadership groups or power holders.  Using J. Victor Baldridge’s models of academic governance (i.e., bureaucratic, political, and collegial), the study produced ordinal and frequency data of which models are most representative on Southern Baptist related campuses from five regions across the United States.

The research additionally conducts a replica study of Edward Gross and Paul Grambsch’s 1974 research on the distribution of institutional power in secular, non-religious academic institutions.   Gross and Grambsch’s study produced ordinal data concerning which campus leadership group had the most and the least institutional power.  The replica study was performed on Southern Baptist related colleges and universities.  The findings of each were then compared identifying key similarities and differences in secular, non-religious institutions and those who are religious.

The research findings proved that no significant differences exist between secular and Christian academic institutions in regard to the distribution of institutional power.  Nearly the same rank ordering of campus leadership groups found by Gross and Grambsch was found in institution related to the Southern Baptist Convention, the largest Protestant denomination in America.

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