The thesis of this paper is that preparation programs for educational administrators would be vastly improved if available knowledge were systematically used in the design, management and study of the instructional programs. A review of the literature revealed that (1) conceptual and empirical knowledge have been rarely and inadequately discussed as foundations for program design; (2) management systems or technologies have not been discussed with reference to preparatory programs; (3) theoretical frameworks and sound research methodologies have been disregarded in most research about preparatory programs. Recommendations are made for increased knowledge utilisation in preparing educational administrators. Specifically suggested are: (1) implementation of various management technologies in departments of educational administration; (2) application of behavioral science theories and research methodologies to the study of existing preparation programs; and (3) use of theoretical and empirical knowledge to design and evaluate innovative preparatory programs. Suggestions regarding particular technologies pertinent to program management, specific theory‐based questions to guide research, and relevant bodies of knowledge applicable to program design are included. Conceptual systems theory is recommended as a foundation for programs designed to train “perceptive generalist” practitioners.
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