A comparative analysis of governance in U.S. colleges and universities

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Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

The goal of this research was to determine whether governance varied among institutions of higher education in the U.S. and how this Variation was related to the size of the institution, the nature of its charter, and a measure of its quality. The proposed model identified four governance types based on the dichotomization of faculty and administrative power. Relationships were hypothesized between governance type and three predictors: size, charter, and institutional quality. Data were gathered by telephone interviews, inquiries to organizations, and document analyses for 40 comprehensive colleges and universities.

A three-way (2x2x2) ANOVA revealed no significant (alpha = .05) differences in relative faculty-administrative power when the institutions were categorized by size, charter, and quality, nor were any of the interactions among size, charter, and quality significant (alpha = .05). The chi-square statistic was used to compare the number of correct predictions to the number expected by chance. The chi-square was not significant at alpha = .05. The model was revised using the difference between faculty and administrative power to redefine governance type. The number of correct predictions increased, but the chi-square was still not significant at an alpha of .05.