Date of Award

Spring 5-14-2021

Document Type

Dissertation (799 registration)

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Educational Leadership


Graduate Studies

Committee Chair

Michael Coquyt


Athletic Training, work-life balance, role overload, attrition, retention, support networks


More women are entering the professional field of athletic training. Despite the growth of women in the profession, many are leaving the collegiate setting by the age of 30. While this trend has been studied extensively at the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I (NCAA DI) setting, little research has been completed at the National Collegiate Athletic Association Division II (NCAA DII) setting. This study aims to gain insight and understanding into the factors that affect female certified athletic trainer retention and attrition in the NCAA DII setting.

This is a qualitative phenomenological study using an advocacy lens. Participants included eleven female certified athletic trainers from ten NCAA DII institutions. Data was collected using semi-structured interviews, transcribed verbatim, and analyzed using spillover theory. Peer review and member checking were performed to establish trustworthiness.

Results of the study revealed five themes that affect female certified athletic trainer attrition and retention. These themes included role overload/conflict, support networks, women as caretakers, the culture of athletics, and gender issues. The most significant factors influencing this group of female certified athletic trainers' retention and attrition were role overload/conflict and support networks. The categories of women and caretakers, the culture of athletics, and gender issues fell to the patriarchal nature of athletics. The participants all indicated that it was an issue but did not believe that they alone could overcome the gender stereotypes in collegiate athletics.



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