Essay on Types Of Power And Exercise Power

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After working in the field of education for the last sixteen years, I have experience working with others that have exercised 1) coercive 2) reward 3) legitimate 4) expert and 5) referent power with employees, customers, and other stakeholders. I have also experienced these same types of power while pursuing my academic goals at in K-12, community colleges, and universities. According to McCroskey & Richmond (1983), power is perceived by individuals that exercise it or “whom the power might be exerted” (pg. 4). Individuals that work in schools and exercise power must consider how it can impact employees, members of the public, and students. In addition, they must identify how they can effectively communicate it to others. In this analysis, I am going to review the five types of power and describe how they are exerted in education.
Coercive Power
Johnson (2012) described how coercive power is “based on penalties or punishments such as physical force, salary reductions, [and] student suspension” (pg. 7). Teachers that punish students for failing to complete an assignment or obeying a classroom are using coercive power. McCroskey & Richmond (1983), describe how “the strength of the teacher’s coercive power is contingent upon the student’s perception of how probable it is that the teacher … minus the probability of punishment from other sources” (pg. 4) including peers. However, recent reforms in education have discouraged the use of suspension as a means to correct…

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