Date of Award


Degree Name

Leadership Studies


College of Education

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Dr. Barbara Nicholson, Chair

Second Advisor

Dr. Ronald Childress

Third Advisor

Dr. Thomas Hisiro

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Thomas Williams

Fifth Advisor

Dr. Lisa Beck


The purpose of this study was to explore the sources used by West Virginia public school superintendents to stay informed; how useful they find evidence-based research; the perceptions they have regarding the overall usefulness/credibility of evidence-based research; the barriers that exist to the use of evidence-based research; and whether there are relationships between selected demographic variables and superintendents’ consumption of evidence-based research. Data were collected using a 10-question researcher adapted survey administered to 59 superintendents in West Virginia. This study continues the work of Treadway (2015) and Hoylman (2017) in the local public education arena. The most relied upon source of information by superintendents was their own professional experience. Evidence-based research was identified as useful, to a degree, in executing professional duties, but was not identified as a frequently relied upon source of information by superintendents; paradoxically, superintendents reported using evidence-based research to inform board of education members, policymakers, members of the general public, and in public relations. For superintendents to effectively inform policymaking, they must be efficient consumers of evidence-based research, fellowship with members of professional organizations, and develop methods of succinctly communicating evidence-based research to policymakers.


Educational leadership -- West Virginia.

School management and organization -- West Virginia.

School superintendents -- West Virginia.