Campus Location

Dallas Campus (Online)

Date of Award


Document Type



Educational Leadership

Degree Name

Doctor of Education

Committee Chair or Primary Advisor

Timothy Atkinson

Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor

Scott Strawn

Third Committee Member or Committee Reader

Tara Hornor


This qualitative research study was designed to understand the lived experiences of leaders learning to lead within higher education, specifically within financial aid offices in the state of Oklahoma, and the role of formal and informal workplace learning on leadership preparation. The purpose of this phenomenological study was to understand the lived experiences of leaders learning to lead. The sample consisted of five financial aid leaders from the state of Oklahoma who are members of the Oklahoma Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators. The electronic interview consisted of 19 questions and resulted in six themes. The researcher coded interviews with three different coding passes (process, a priori, and emotion coding) to determine the themes that describe the processes of mentoring, formal and informal learning, and the role of professional organizations on the leadership development of financial aid administrators.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.