Date of Award

Spring 2-17-2021

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership for Learning Dissertations


Educational Leadership

Committee Chair

Dr. Chinasa Elue

Committee Chair/First Advisor

Dr. Nicholas Clegorne

Second Committee Member

Dr. Sheryl Croft


The purpose of this qualitative phenomenographical study was to explore the different ways that elementary assistant principals experienced mentoring from their elementary principals as a way to provide the requisite leadership development that would lead them to become a principal. This research study was conducted using in-depth semi-structured interviews as the primary data source. Ancillary data sources such as demographic surveys, reviewing district leadership secondary source documents, and researcher journal notes aided in the data triangulation and analysis. This study was guided by one main research question: What are the different ways elementary assistant principals experience mentoring from their elementary principals?

The research question posed allowed participants to illuminate their lived experiences about how elementary assistant principals experienced mentorship directly from their elementary principals. The prominent themes that emerged from the data were: a) assistant principal leadership development, b) principal leadership development, and c) mentorship perceptions. The findings established from this study were interpreted and presented in the context of this study’s theoretical-conceptual framework and extant literature. Research implications for educational leadership and practice were also addressed and discussed.