ERIC Number: EJ1066033
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 22
Program Directors' Perceptions of Programmatic Attributes Contributing to Athletic Training Student Persistence
Bowman, Thomas G.; Dodge, Thomas M.; Mazerolle, Stephanie M.
Athletic Training Education Journal, v10 n2 p122-129 Apr-Jun 2015
Context: Graduates of athletic training programs (ATPs) have identified factors contributing to their persistence through professional education. However, program directors have yet to elaborate on programmatic attributes that might contribute to athletic training student retention in their respective ATPs. Objective: To determine program directors' perceptions of ATP strengths and areas for improvement regarding athletic training student retention. Design: Qualitative study. Setting: Bachelor's ATPs. Patients or Other Participants: Sixteen ATP directors with 6.0 ± 4.0 years of experience in their current positions. Main Outcome Measure(s): The participants completed audio recorded telephone interviews. We analyzed the data using principles of grounded theory and maintained trustworthiness using multiple-analyst triangulation, peer review, and member checks. Results: We found 2 themes to describe the strengths of bachelor's ATPs. Our participants thought that they provided a student-centered approach and diverse clinical education experiences leading to a supportive and exciting environment to foster athletic training student learning. We categorized the student centered approach theme into 3 subthemes: program size, student engagement and program atmosphere, and academic and clinical cohesion. Conclusions: Program directors should strive to provide athletic training students with individual attention to help them feel welcomed, valued, and important. A small program size or adequate personnel can foster interpersonal relations which can provide athletic training students with mentoring opportunities. Improving ATP cohesion can provide learning opportunities which assist students in making connections and promote the importance of the academic and clinical education components of the ATP. Engaging athletic training students early through a variety of clinical education experiences can assist professional socialization and foster excitement for the profession.
Descriptors: Athletics, Allied Health Occupations Education, Academic Persistence, Administrator Attitudes, College Programs, School Holding Power, Undergraduate Students, Qualitative Research, Interviews, Grounded Theory
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A