The Perception of Leaders: A Competitive Test of Social Exchange Theory and Equity Theory


  • Daniel T Dick University of Wisconsin
  • David Dryden Henningsen Northern Illinois University



Social exchange theory and equity theory were used to examine the perception of leaders in a small group context.  Participants (n = 154), involved in a semester long group project  assessed their leaders  contributions to the task and maintenance of the group using measures gauging social exchange and equity forces.   These measures were regressed onto desire to work with the leader again in the future. Overall, the results indicate greater support for social exchange theory.

Author Biographies

Daniel T Dick, University of Wisconsin

Daniel T. Dick is a doctoral candidate in the Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis Department.

David Dryden Henningsen, Northern Illinois University

David Henningsen is a scholar studying group dynamics. He has published research on group decision making, creativity in groups, and group relations. He has published in a variety of regional, national, and international journals.


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How to Cite

Dick, D. T., & Henningsen, D. D. (2020). The Perception of Leaders: A Competitive Test of Social Exchange Theory and Equity Theory. Groupwork, 28(3), 37-52.