Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Advisor

Shannon Collins

Second Advisor

Alexander Parks

Third Advisor

Jesse Robinette


K-12 principals are held increasingly accountable for school success, yet their direct impact on students is negligible. Principals must thus work to positively impact their teachers in order to indirectly impact student achievement. Transformational leaders are able to utilize intellectual stimulation in order to impact those who work under them. The data for this study was collected through qualitative means, with eight K-12 teachers, representing two school districts in East Tennessee, participating. The findings in this study indicated that principals were able to provide intellectually stimulating experiences for teachers without having to bring in outside resources or even add extra time to either their or their teachers’ workdays. For the participants in this study, K-12 principal actions that provided intellectual stimulation were as follows: displaying trust, providing leadership experiences, questioning the status quo, giving specific/actionable feedback, and facilitating academic study.


Educational leadership, Intellectual stimulation, Teacher effectiveness, Principals, Phenomenology, Qualitative research