Identifier

etd-03102014-084353

Degree

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Kinesiology

Document Type

Thesis

Abstract

Coed sport environments can be paradoxical settings where pre-existing gender biases influence participants’ enjoyment and success. Furthermore, gendered messages and stereotypes as well as low expectations for females within coed sports can create participation barriers by reducing feelings of confidence and performance. Within Campus Recreation, intramural sport administrators have a significant role in determining participation opportunities and experiences. This investigation examined administrators’ perspectives about coed intramural flag football gender modifications. Specifically, three research questions guided this study: (a) how do intramural administrators view coed flag football gender modifications?; (b) to what extent do intramural administrators perceive gender modifications to impact coed flag football environments?; and (c) what level of awareness do intramural administrators have about the gendered messages of coed flag football gender modifications? Qualitative interviews with variation sampling were used to obtain the perspectives of 12 intramural administrators from across the United States of America. Interpretative phenomenological analysis procedures were used to analyze all interview data. Administrators reported that coed gender modifications impacted perceptions about female ability, often by sending messages of inequity. Administrators also revealed that the modifications created competitive strategy that often diminished the integrity of the game and undermined perceptions of female ability. Findings also indicated that administrators were highly influenced by previously existing gender stereotypes, leading to an endorsement of the modifications. Endorsements were accompanied by questioning of the rules but reluctance to enact changes. These findings elucidate the necessity for administrators to scrutinize the existence and application of coed gender modifications. Furthermore, engaging participant feedback on the specific attributes of the coed modifications is important to better understand the needs of female populations. Lastly, eliminating some or all components of the modifications may help diminish the gendered messages that currently exist within coed flag football.

Date

2014

Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Garn, Alex

Included in

Kinesiology Commons

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