A Quantitative Study of Stress in Intercollegiate Head Swimming Coaches

A Quantitative Study of Stress in Intercollegiate Head Swimming Coaches

Author: 
Robert T. Pearson
Program of study: 
Ed.D.
Abstract: 
The purpose of this quantitative comparative research study was to investigate issues that might contribute to stress levels of intercollegiate head swimming coaches working at National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) institutions. The Coaching Issues Survey (CIS), a tool to measure specific, potential stressors experienced by intercollegiate athletic coaches without regard to a specific sport was used to collect data. The CIS provided a total score of potential stress and specific scores from four subscales: Win-Loss, Time-Role, Program-Success, and Athlete-Concerns. Data were analyzed through descriptive statistics that resulted in descriptions of demographics and characteristics of participants (N=223) and for the independent variables of a coach’s competitive division, age, and years of coaching experience. The dependent variable was the score on the CIS. The score on the CIS for Hypothesis (H1) of the four subscales, Time-Role was significant Hypothesis 2 (H2) of a coach’s level of competitive division showed no significant difference in levels of stress. Hypothesis 3 (H3) of age of coaches showed no significant difference in levels of stress. Hypothesis 4 (H4) of years of coaching experience revealed no significant difference in levels of stress. Two additional hypotheses were investigated. The first revealed no significance between levels of stress among head intercollegiate swimming coaches by years of intercollegiate head coaching experience. The second hypothesis, gender of the coach, revealed a significant difference between levels of stress among intercollegiate head swimming coaches. It is recommended the study be replicated during an entire competitive season and with additional demographic variables.
Dedication: 
I dedicate this dissertation to my family and friends whose support was, and is, unflagging. I began this doctoral journey at the urging of my mother, Jean Pearson, who sadly did not live to see me complete the process. My mother’s faith in me was what kept me going. To my father, as did your better half, dedication of your life to the education and betterment of others served as an inspiration. To my sister and her family, you always had just the right words to say when things looked bleak. Moreover, I could not have completed any of this without the support of Maureen Travers who helped guide me through many dark times. Finally, I dedicate this work to the community of intercollegiate swimming coaches.
Acknowledgements: 
I thank my dissertation chair, Dr. Elizabeth Thompson and committee members Dr. Marni Finkelstein and Dr. Travis Feezell for staying with me through this long odyssey. Dr. Thompson, thank you so much for stepping in and guiding me to the finish line, your support and critical eye were invaluable. Dr. Finkelstein, as the only member of the committee to be with me through the entire process, your advice proved invaluable. Dr. Feezell, your expertise in the subject matter and encouraging words helped bring this study to fruition. Finally, I would like to thank former committee members, especially Dr. Tim Baghurst; and instructors, chiefly Dr. Dennis Clodi, and many others who provided direct or indirect assistance.