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Exploratory Factor Analysis of the Student-Athlete Career Situation Inventory (SACSI). Scott D. Sandstedt, Richard H. Cox, Starla Ivey, Matthew P. Martens, Gant Ward, S. Nicole Webber, Steve Portenga, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65202. Introduction.

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Exploratory factor analysis of the student athlete career situation inventory sacsi

Exploratory Factor Analysis of the Student-Athlete Career Situation Inventory (SACSI)

Scott D. Sandstedt, Richard H. Cox, Starla Ivey, Matthew P. Martens, Gant Ward, S. Nicole Webber, Steve Portenga, University of Missouri, Columbia, MO 65202

Exploratory factor analysis of the student athlete career situation inventory sacsi

Introduction Situation Inventory (SACSI)

1. Transition from sport can be a very traumatic experience for today’s collegiate student-athlete. The centrality of sport in their social, personal, financial, recreational, and vocational lives may make retirement from sports participation more problematic than for traditional workers (Ballie, 1993).

2. Few collegiate athletes make sufficient plans to prepare for career termination and may struggle with their transition from the role of athlete to non-athlete (Baillie, 1993; Mihovilovic, 1968).

Introduction Situation Inventory (SACSI)

3. Blann (1985) found that first and second-year male student-athletes from a sample of Division I and Division III schools had career plans that were not as well formulated as those of matched non-athletes.

4. Petipas, Danish, McKelvain, and Murphy (1990) suggest that many athletes feel that investing effort in the career development process would detract from their sport performance.

5. With all of the intrinsic benefits of sport participation, in addition to the time and energy demands of a student-athlete’s athletic environment (Martens & Lee, 1998; Petitpas & Champagne, 1988; Sowa & Gressard, 1983), it is conceivable to understand why career exploration and planning may not be a top priority for many of today’s student-athletes.

Introduction Situation Inventory (SACSI)

6. Despite such an awareness of the inadequacies concerning the level of career preparation for student-athletes, there have been very few studies where investigators have empirically investigated the attitudes, beliefs, and interests of student-athletes as they relate to vocational development and preparation.

7. Part of the reason for such a deficiency is due to the nonexistence of a sufficient instrument to reliably measure career development and preparation specific to student-athletes.

Introduction Situation Inventory (SACSI)

8. Researchers have utilized several inventories to measure athletes’ vocational development including the Career Maturity Inventory (CMI; Kennedy & Dimick, 1987), and the Career Development Inventory (CDI; Smallman & Sowa, 1996).

9. However, Heppner (2000) asserts that many of the existing measures of career development, maturity, transition, etc. are normed on populations that may not possess many of the same barriers to career development that are inherent within other specific populations or cultures, i.e. time and energy demands experienced by collegiate student-athletes.

Purpose Situation Inventory (SACSI)

  • The purpose of this study is to establish the psychometric properties of an appropriate measure of the career situation of student-athletes using reliability and exploratory factor analyses.

  • By developing a psychometrically sound instrument that measures the career related attitudes, beliefs, and interests of student-athletes, professionals within a student-athlete’s sport environment will be able to develop more effective educational and counseling intervention strategies.

Definition of construct
Definition of Construct Situation Inventory (SACSI)

Career situation specific to student-athletes is defined as the extent of one’s career development and preparation characterized by the sophistication of one’s vocational attitudes, beliefs, and interests that may be influenced by athletic participation in a university setting.

Scale definition
Scale Definition Situation Inventory (SACSI)

The Student-Athlete Career Situation Inventory (SACSI) is designed to measure the attitudes, beliefs, and interests associated with career outlook and preparation within a population of collegiate student-athletes while considering the developmental barriers to vocational development resulting from sport participation and the university athletic environment.

Recruitment of participants
Recruitment of Participants Situation Inventory (SACSI)

  • 204 student-athletes from a large mid-western Division I university participated in the study.

  • The investigators approached coaches from 17 sports and asked for their permission to solicit the voluntary participation of their athletes.

  • After receiving permission, the investigators presented each athlete with a brief overview of the study and ask for their voluntary participation.

  • The most salient characteristics of each subject is his/her status as a student-athlete and being of college age. All other characteristics had equal potential for representation as the investigators did not control for gender, race, socio-economic status, or class standing when recruiting subjects.

Scale development
Scale Development Situation Inventory (SACSI)

Five graduate students from a large mid-western university worked collaboratively to create the scale items by using:

  • pre-existing measures as models

  • related literature regarding student-athlete career development

  • awareness of the characteristics of sport participation in a university setting

Scale development1
Scale Development Situation Inventory (SACSI)

3. From a larger cumulative list of items, questions were selected to be included on a final list of 41 items based on each question’s estimated ability to adequately measure the construct of student-athlete career situation as a whole, as agreed upon by each student and their research advisor.

4. Students revised each item on the final list to ensure the consistency of item presentation (e.g. length and wording) and to limit the potential for responses based on social desirability. Each student also incorporated suggestions for reverse graded items in an effort to encourage response validity.

5. In addition to item generation, the graduate students worked collaboratively to develop appropriate anchors for item responses.

Data analysis
Data Analysis Situation Inventory (SACSI)

1. To ensure that the values are within the expected range and that no items are omitted, minimum and maximum values for each variable were calculated.

2. To analyze the distribution of responses means, standard deviations, and ranges were computed for each variable.

3. Exploratory factor analysis was used to determine the dimensional structure of the items chosen to assess the career related attitudes, beliefs, and interests of student-athletes. Principal axis factoring was used to extract the factors followed by an oblique promax rotations to identify stable factor loadings for each item.

Data analysis1
Data Analysis Situation Inventory (SACSI)

4. A scree plot was used to help determine which factors would be retained for rotation. Accordingly, identifiable factors were required to have eigenvalues greater than 1. In interpreting the rotated factor pattern, an item was acknowledged to load on a given factor if the factor loading was .40 or greater for a potential factor.

5. Coefficient alpha was calculated for both the SACSI as a whole and any sub-scales that correspond with identifiable factors to assess the internal consistency of the SACSI.

Discussion Situation Inventory (SACSI)

  • Results indicate a five-factor solution that accounts for 44% of the total variance.

  • Based on each factor’s item content, the following themes were assigned:

    • Factor 1: Perceptions of Career Development/Exploration

    • Factor 2: Career vs. Sport Identity

    • Factor 3: Locus of Control

    • Factor 4: Barriers to Career Development

    • Factor 5: Sport to Work Relationship

Discussion Situation Inventory (SACSI)

  • Initial analyses reveal the multidimensional nature of student-athlete career development

  • Although student-athletes may have an appropriate awareness of career-development, barriers such as time management, role conflict, and external influences have a salient impact on fostering such development.

  • Accordingly, student-athletes recognize the relationship between sport-related and work-related skills.

Limitations and considerations for future research
Limitations and Considerations for Future Research Situation Inventory (SACSI)

  • The fact that only one university was utilized in the investigation warrants caution when generalizing results.

  • Future confirmatory analyses are needed to further establish the factor structure of the SACSI using a heterogeneous sample.

  • Accordingly, further validity analyses are necessary to promote the efficacious use of the SACSI.