Graduation Semester and Year




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies


Educational Leadership and Policy Studies

First Advisor

F Barbara Tobolowsky


The role of school principals has changed from being managers to instructional leaders. As a result, many principals do not feel prepared to lead under these conditions, in which some leave their campuses within the first five-years of service. Despite school districts implementing educational reforms to attract and retain principals, turnover persists and is more pervasive in secondary settings when compared to elementary campuses. This study explored the perceptions of six veteran secondary principals (five-years or more at their campus) from two Texas school districts and whether self-confidence in their abilities or self-efficacy impacted their effectiveness as instructional leaders, thus influencing their retention. Efficacy was explored through Bandura’s (1977) four sources of information (i.e., mastery experiences, vicarious experiences, verbal and social persuasion, and physiological states). Findings suggested that self-efficacy was significant to the participants’ success as instructional leaders and their decision to remain principals. While mastery and vicarious experiences were the most prevalent in building efficacy, verbal and social persuasion and physiological states were implicitly connected to their confidence. This research adds insight to the limited literature regarding principal retention.


Principal retention, Instructional leadership, Self-efficacy


Education | Educational Leadership


Degree granted by The University of Texas at Arlington