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Educational Administration, Leadership, and Research - Gary Houchens

Dr. Gary Houchens

Dr. Gary Houchens

Associate Professor

Office:  Gary A. Ransdell Hall - Room 3087
Phone:  270-745-4999


  • B.A., Philosophy, Religion, & History, Western Kentucky University, 1993
  • M.A., History, Western Kentucky University, 2000
  • M.A.T., Education Administration, Oakland City University, 2003
  • Ph.D., Education Leadership & Organizational Development, University of Louisville, 2008


Gary Houchens is a former social studies teacher, assistant principal, principal and district administrator, serving in both public and private school settings.  He joined the WKU faculty in 2010.

Courses Taught:

  • EDAD 576 (Issues and Trends in Education)
  • EDAD 590 (Administration of School Personnel)
  • EDAD 597 (Problems in Education Administratin)
  • EDAD 683 (Leading Teaching and Learning)
  • EDAD 684 (Instructional Leadership)
  • EDAD 696 (Advanced Organizational Theory)

Research Interests:

My research interests focus on the inner lives of school leaders, including the intellectual, emotional, and spiritual aspects of leadership, and how these dimensions influence the practice of school administration.  Current research studies focus on theories of practice for instructional leadership and using coaching protocols to enhance principals' self-reflection and self-awareness.

Selected Publications:

Houchens, G. W. (2012, December). The ritual "hazing" of assistant principals. School Administrator, 14-15.

Houchens, G. W., Hurt, J., Stobaugh, R., & Keedy, J. L. (2012). Double-loop learning: A coaching protocol for enhancing principal instructional leadership. Qualitative Research in Education, 1(2), 135-178.

Houchens, G. W, & Keaster, R. D. (in press). Enhancing teacher leadership through instructional rounds: A district case study. In Warrick, D., & Muller, J. (Eds.), Lessons in changing cultures: Learning from real world cases. Oxford, UK: RossiSmith Publishers.

Houchens, G. W., & Keedy, J. L. (2009). Theories of practice: Understanding the practice of educational leadership. Journal of Thought, 44(3-4), 49-61.


Principal of the Year for work with at-risk students and their families, 2007.  Awarded by the FamilyWorks Therapy, Bowling Green, KY.

Outside Interests:

Music, politics, outdoor sports (camping, canoeing, hiking)

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 Last Modified 9/25/14