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ERIC Number: ED519879
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 173
Abstractor: As Provided
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-1242-2289-9
Concussion Assessment in California Community College Football: Athletic Trainers' Strides toward a Safer Return to Play
Chinn, Nancy Resendes
ProQuest LLC, Ed.D. Dissertation, University of California, Davis
The purpose of this mixed method study was to compare current practices of athletic trainers in the management of concussion in football at California Community Colleges (CCC) with the concussion management guidelines set forth by the National Athletic Trainers Association (NATA). The study also set out to gain understanding of why some athletic trainers comply with best practices in concussion management, such as performing baseline testing, while others do not. The first phase of the research was a population study, and consisted of one athletic trainer from each of the California Community Colleges that had a football program at the time of the study, which totaled seventy-two. Telephone surveys were conducted with 64 of the 72 CCC athletic trainers. The second part of the research consisted of follow-up in-depth interviews with eight of the athletic trainers at their corresponding work sites. Quantitative data was analyzed utilizing descriptive statistics, correlations, and multiple regression utilizing SPSS. Qualitative data reflecting responses to research questions was systematically analyzed and synthesized into corresponding themes. The results of this research indicated that a large number of California Community College athletic trainers (71% of those surveyed) are not currently conducting baseline testing. Further, number of years practicing as an athletic trainer negatively correlated with frequency of obtaining cognitive baselines. At the sideline, the most commonly utilized method of assessment by surveyed subjects was a symptoms checklist. Informal cognitive assessment was performed by half of the study's subjects, while approximately one third incorporated a standardized assessment. Methods of assessment for return to play also varied. Standardized methods of assessment were employed in making return to play decisions by 42% of subjects, and 10% utilized ImPact computerized software. Those subjects in the study who conducted baseline testing considered it part of providing the best care for athletes, linking it to meeting "the gold standard" in concussion management. Other reasons for conducting baseline testing included identifying baseline testing as a valuable tool for reducing further injury, viewing baseline testing as a method for reducing risk and liability, and experiencing a sense of responsibility in adhering to the NATA position statement on management of concussion. Themes identified for not conducting baseline testing included time constraints, and viewing baseline testing as an unnecessary component of a concussion management program. Respondents reported on pressure to return an athlete to play, frequency of receiving concussion education and amount of workload. Results of these variables are discussed as they relate to concussion assessment and return to play practices. Finally, recommendations are offered that include the creation of a system-wide approach to concussion management that reflects best practices utilized in systems such as the NFL, as well as baseline testing of athletes in all contact sports at California Community Colleges. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
ProQuest LLC. 789 East Eisenhower Parkway, P.O. Box 1346, Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Tel: 800-521-0600; Web site:
Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Two Year Colleges
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California