Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


College of Humanities and Social Sciences



Thesis Sponsor/Dissertation Chair/Project Chair

Valerie Sessa

Committee Member

Jennifer Bragger

Committee Member

Kenneth Sumner


This study aims to look into leadership development and the antecedents that are important for its development using Bandura’s Social Cognitive Theory. Specifically, the purpose of this study is threefold: 1) To develop and present a new construct called leadership agency, 2) to conduct a study to develop a self-reported measure of leadership agency, and finally 3) to create a framework that outlines the relationship between antecedents and leadership agency. Using an online survey tool, 36 freshmen students in the Emerging Leader Learning Community at Montclair State University, participated and completed surveys on the four components of leadership agency; leader mtentionality, leader forethought, leader self-reactiveness, leader self-reflectiveness and its hypothesized antecedents; behavioral, environmental and personal factors. Results indicated that leadership agency is construct that can be examined both as single and multi-faceted construct, depending on the situation. Furthermore, results from the regression analyses indicated that personal factors such as physiological state (resilience), goal orientation, and personality (conscientiousness, extroversion) as well as vicarious experience and individual’s perception of their past leadership experience had a significant impact on leadership agency. The implications of these results and how leadership agency can help understand leadership development are evaluated in the discussion section.

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Psychology Commons