Date of Award

6-2005

Degree Name

Master of Arts

Department

Health, Physical Education, and Recreation (to 2011)

First Advisor

Dr. Jody Brylinsky

Second Advisor

Dr. Michael Miller

Third Advisor

Dr. Sheila Green

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access

Abstract

The profession of athletic training has continued to emerge as a profession for both men and women over the last 50 years. The nature of the profession and the environment in which it exists may lead to sexual harassment by coaches, athletes/clients, administration, or other certified athletic trainers (ATC's). The purpose of this study was to determine the perception of sexual harassment, the prevalence of sexual harassment, and mechanisms in place to prevent sexual harassment in three professional environments of athletic training: college/university, high school, and sports medicine clinic.

The Modified VELMAC Sexual Harassment Questionnaire was distributed via email to certified athletic trainers currently working at either a college/university, high school, or sports medicine clinic in the National Athletic Trainer's Association's District 4 (n=226). One-way analysis of variance (ANOVA) and individual chi-square analysis were conducted. Results demonstrated that sexual harassment is not perceived to be a serious problem in athletic training regardless of the setting. The prevalence of sexual harassment in the form of a hostile environment (jokes by athletes or comments on appearance from coaches and athletes) is more likely in the college/university setting than at the high school or sports medicine clinic. Female ATC's are more likely to both perceive sexual harassment as a problem and experience it than male ATC's. The majority of the sexual harassment victims were more likely to confront the harasser than file a formal complaint as a mean of managing the hostile environment.

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