Date of Graduation

7-2015

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Recreation and Sport Management (EdD)

Degree Level

Graduate

Department

Health, Human Performance and Recreation

Advisor

Stephen Dittmore

Committee Member

Terence Eddy

Second Committee Member

Steve Langsner

Third Committee Member

Kasey Walker

Abstract

Intercollegiate athletic programs have been used to facilitate social interactions between students within the complex nature of the college environment. In particular, many researchers have discussed the benefits of intercollegiate athletic programs in higher education, examining positive aspects of team identification such as the enhancing sense of belonging, personal self- esteem, happiness, and decreasing stress, anxiety, depression, and loneliness in social life. With the benefits of the program, it is important to scrutinize the benefits of intercollegiate athletic programs in students’ college adjustment in higher education. Therefore, the goal of this dissertation was to provide better understanding of the intercollegiate athletic programs in higher education to academic counselor and administrators. The purpose of two studies designed for this dissertation were as follows: (1) to assist to understand what role intercollegiate athletics have on students’ academic success by considering social and emotional construct in college life, (2) to identify significant factors that generate team identification toward intercollegiate athletic programs in college environment. Researchers in the field of sport management should have a better knowledge of benefits of intercollegiate athletic programs to directly and indirectly assist students’ social, emotional, and academic adjustment. Additionally, the predictive factors enhancing the degree of team identification, as resulted in the second study, support sport marketers to positively engage with student fans in a college. It is also evidence why students are highly identified to intercollegiate athletic programs as well as conceptual note that the predictive factors are directly and indirectly associated with the assistance of students’ better life in college environment.

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