Environmental Scanning: Allied Health Leaders' Selection of Strategic Information

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In environmental scanning, deans and directors of allied health units face the task of making sense of volumes of information from their internal and external environments. A study was conducted to detail the information processing of 108 allied health deans and directors of institutional members of the Association of Schools of Allied Health Professions. The study was a survey that included basic demographic questions and two scenarios, each representing a strategic situation. Respondents (n = 56, 52%) rated their general perceptions of the two strategic situations and their projected use of eight types of information cues to clarify the situations. Results indicated that deans and directors had high use of all types of information cues in both strategic situations. The results for the strategic situation based on a scenario about program closure showed that use of negative information cues was associated with proportionally greater use of internal, external, and formal information cues (Pearson correlation coefficients r = 0.72, 0.80, and 0.77, respectively, all with p < 0.005). Some differences were found in types of information used by respondents in academic health centers versus non-academic health centers. The results of this study provide insights on how allied health deans and directors process information in environmental scanning.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2010

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  • The Journal of Allied Health is the official publication of the Association of Schools of Allied Health Professions (ASAHP). The Journal is the only interdisciplinary allied health periodical, publishing scholarly works related to research and development, feature articles, research abstracts and book reviews. Readers of the Journal comprise allied health leaders, educators, faculty and students.
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