Date Approved


Embargo Period


Document Type


Degree Name

EdD Educational Leadership


Educational Services and Leadership


College of Education


Kerrigan, Monica

Committee Member 1

Walpole, MaryBeth

Committee Member 2

Vaden, Sandra


Capacity Building, Communities of Practice, Institutional Research


Education, Higher--Research; University and colleges--Employees--Career Development


Educational Assessment, Evaluation, and Research | Higher Education


The demands and expectations on Institutional Research (IR) have continued to expand over the years, yet there have been no studies on cost effective ways to develop and maintain the knowledge and skills needed by professionals in the field. This quantitative study supplemented with limited qualitative data explored the impact of participating in an Institutional Research (IR) affinity group on the development of the three tiers of organizational intelligence and the strength and nature of the social network that exists among the participants. Surveys were collected from members of a community college IR affinity group in New Jersey along with minutes from the IR affinity group meetings and postings on the IR affinity group listserv. Data were analyzed using SPSS for the quantitative analysis and Node XL for the social network analysis. The findings suggest that communities of practice, such as the IR affinity group, can aid the development and maintenance of some of the skills and knowledge related to the three tiers of organizational intelligence in the field of IR. These results also support King and Bouchard's (2011) assertion that professional development efforts need to establish clear learning goals that are coordinated, directed, and supported by distributed leadership to build capacity.