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Professional Background and Training of Physical Therapy Department Chairpersons

Giuffre, Suzanne Marie (2008) Professional Background and Training of Physical Therapy Department Chairpersons. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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This study examined the professional background of physical therapy department chairpersons, as well as training received for the position, and its importance. Survey methodology was utilized and the return rate was 62%. The average physical therapy department chairperson is a 52 years old female, tenured, associate professor with a doctorate degree. Chairpersons were on average, a clinician for 8 years prior to entering academia, had no intention of entering academia and thus took longer to achieve graduate degrees than other department chairpersons in the academy. Only twenty-six percent had a doctorate degree when entering academia. The majority had prior administrative experience, whether in the clinic or higher education. Most were internal candidates, and the largest percent of respondents were interested in a long-term career as a department chairperson. Few received formal training from their institutions. Forty-three percent sought outside training opportunities. The majority received informal training from the previous department chairperson. No training or minimal training was received in all of the fifty areas listed on the survey. However, 27 of the 50 areas were rated moderately to highly important. When respondents were asked to identify the most important areas for training, twelve areas were ranked above the rest. Leadership, institutional policies and procedures, promotion and tenure, team building and budgeting were the top five training areas.It is recommended that physical therapy department chairpersons seek ongoing, internal and external training, with mentorship from other chairpersons. The areas most important to chairpersons should be addressed. Training could be provided at the institutional level, especially policies and procedures. However, local, regional or state consortiums could provide additional training. National training for issues related to the profession of physical therapy is available and efforts to make the training more effective should be considered.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Giuffre, Suzanne
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairWeidman, John Cweidman@pitt.eduWEIDMAN
Committee MemberNelson, Glenn M
Committee MemberYeager, John L
Committee MemberZullo, Thomas G
Date: 29 January 2008
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 19 November 2007
Approval Date: 29 January 2008
Submission Date: 5 December 2007
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Education > Administrative and Policy Studies
Degree: EdD - Doctor of Education
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Career Paths; Department Chairperson; Physical Therapy; Professional Background; Training
Other ID:, etd-12052007-123319
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 20:08
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:53


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