Publication Date

Fall 2019

Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Gary Houchens (Director), Stacy Leggett, and Thomas Stewart

Degree Program

Department of Psychology

Degree Type

Specialist in Education


The purpose of this action research was to effectively measure and evaluate the extent to which implementing professional learning communities in a high school setting can shift the school toward a more collaborative culture. Additionally, the study set out to aide school leadership in analyzing their role in designing and implementing PLCs so that they might make informed decisions regarding PLCs for collaborative school culture and improvement in the future. Data was collected utilizing staff surveys before and after the implementations of PLCs. Additionally, a focus group of staff was interviewed and provided feedback regarding PLCs and the role of school leadership in the implementation process. Analysis of the data suggests that the culture of the school remained mostly unchanged after PLC implementation, noting only marginal improvement in the fragmented culture. It may be concluded that the staff’s lack of knowledge and experience in the PLC process before the study contributed to inaccuracy in their perspectives and further studies could be conducted to evaluate the root causes of this lack of knowledge and balkanized school culture.


Education | Educational Leadership | Organizational Communication