Shelley Wepner: 0000-0003-2731-4192




This study investigated the roles and responsibilities of University-Based Administrators (UBAs) in relation to their oversight of Professional Development Schools PDSs. UBAs refer to college administrators such as department chairs, program coordinators, directors, assistant deans, associate deans, and deans. The participants were 36 UBAs ranging from mid-level administrators to faculty chairpersons. They represented universities of various sizes and Carnegie classifications from across the United States. The UBAs responded through email or by telephone to nine semi-structured interview questions related to their PDS work. The majority of UBAs were tenure-track or clinical faculty, who spent less than 50% of their time on PDS work. Forty-six percent of the UBAs’ Institutions of Higher Education (IHEs) partnered with between one to ten PDSs. The majority of the IHEs had been doing PDS work for 11-19 years. Findings revealed significant variation in UBA’s roles and responsibilities. There is no standardized leadership title, set of responsibilities or qualifications, or structure for the oversight of PDS activities and networks. Three major administrative responsibilities related to PDS work emerged: personnel, programs, and documents. UBAs reported the greatest challenges were time, sustainability, resources/support.



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