Degree Name

Education Specialist (EdS)

Semester of Degree Completion


Thesis Director

Larry Janes


Every individual who is choosing a career or is contemplating a career change should research the field before making a final decision. This is especially consequential when considering an atypical occupation. A female educational administrator falls into this category. Since the majority of educational leaders are male, a woman administrator can expect to face many challenges associated with her gender.

The major purpose of this field experience was to gather information pertinent to a woman considering a career in educational administration. The specific objectives were five-fold: 1. To obtain a profile of the women administrators in downstate Illinois (south of Interstate 80), 2. To understand why women enter the field of administration and to assess their future goals, 3. To determine the perceived stressors of women administrators, 4. To decide the overall satisfaction or dissatisfaction of women in administration, 5. To obtain advice from women administrators directed toward females who are considering entering the field.

These objectives were met by mailing questionnaires to 115 women administrators in the region south of Interstate 80 in Illinois. Eighty females responded to the survey, and the results were quite promising for the woman who is looking toward educational administration as a career.

The average female in this survey was determined to be a married, middle-aged woman with two children. Her masters degree and 21 years of diversified experience in education have earned her the opportunity to work the past eight years as an administrator in a small school of less than 500 in enrollment. She is employed for either 10 or 12 months out of the year and earns a salary in the $30,000 to $50,000 range. Typically, she feels that she was hired as an administrator because she was the best qualified for the position. Her initial decision to enter the field was made out of the desire to use her talents in meeting the challenge of management. This female is satisfied with her role as an educational leader and plans to remain in her present position or move upward on the career ladder. She likes working with people and feels that, through her position, she has the opportunity to impact their lives. The greatest complaint that she has to offer is that she has "too much to do in too short a time." Lack of time is one of her greatest stressors, whether it be time to complete tasks at work or to provide for her family and her own needs. Fortunately, her experience with discrimination and sexual biases is minimal. Even though she must work long, hard hours, this female encourages other women to take on the challenge of the occupation.