Dissertation Information for Patricia Bernice Huff Ball
- Patricia Bernice Huff Ball
- Library and Information Science
- University of Pittsburgh (USA) (1992)
- E. J. Josey
- Richard Andrew Krzys
- Wendell Wray
- William Nasri
- William B. Thomas
MPACT Status: Fully Complete
Title: African American male library administrators in public and academic libraries: A descriptive study
Abstract: The library and information profession for the most part is characterized as a female dominated profession. In an effort to fill the gap in the literature this study is designed to investigate the status of African American male library administrators who occupy administrative positions in academic and public libraries. Research questions guiding the study were: (1) What characteristics describe African American male administrators in the profession? (2) What is the status of African American male administrators in the profession? (3) Are there perceived perceptions of discrimination among African American male administrators in the profession?
Several sources were used to identify the population for the study. A total of sixty-five African American male administrators were identified and mailed questionnaires. A total of sixty were returned for a total return rate of 92.3%. Fifty-five or 84.6% of the questionnaires were used to compile data for the study.
African American male library administrators have distinctive demographic characteristics, educational backgrounds, professional characteristics, career patterns, and perceptions. Most originated from Southern States and from middle-class to working class family backgrounds. Respondents in the study were married and have an average of 1.40 children. Their ages ranged between 46-55. They attended Southern undergraduate colleges where the majority of the respondents majored in a Social Science. Most received their MLS's from Atlanta University. A total of 41.8% have earned PhD's. They identified their communication and organizational skills as the important factors for professional advancement. The selection process for available positions and acceptance into the 'old boy' network were rated as the two top problem factors for African American male library administrators. A comparison of factors related to professional growth and factors that have been problems for participants revealed an inverse relationship between factors. Factors related to professional advancement ranged from perceived factors in one's own control to factors that are not in the range of a person's personal control. Factors identified as problems ranged from factors perceived as not being in a person's control to those that a person can control.
The findings from this study corroborate with earlier studies of African American professionals. Studies conducted in other disciplines that focused on professional African Americans, are reviewed in the review of the literature. Racism was identified in previous studies as a perceived barrier to professional advancement. African American male library administrators in this study also identified racism as a barrier to professional advancement.