Are we getting the respect we deserve? – Attitudes toward and recognition of CC-AASP by NCAA Division I and III athletic directors and coaches

Samantha Diamond, Ithaca College, USA
Anthea Barnett, Ithaca College, USA

Theme: Professional issues and ethics (AASP-related)

Program ID: LEC-02B

Presentation: October 2, 2013 1:00 pm - 2:00 pm

Room: Melrose


Research has shown the benefits of sport psychology, especially within elite populations (e.g.,Curry & Mariar, 2004; Ludwick, 2006), yet there remains a knowledge gap between those hiring and those providing sport psychology services (Zakrajsek & Zizzi, 2011). The Association for Applied Sport Psychology (AASP) has done much to provide a recognizable credential for consumers and promote growth within the field with the development of the Certified Consultant (CC) credential. However, do coaches and athletic directors know about the CC credential and would they seek out professionals who are certified? The purpose of the current study was to examine the hiring practices of NCAA Division I and III collegiate coaches and athletic directors (n = 1057; Nmale = 671; Nfemale = 350). Participants completed an online survey including the Sport Psychology Attitudes Revised Coaches–2 Questionnaire (SPARC-2; Zakrajsek, Martin & Zizzi, 2011) and a series of items assessing participant’s beliefs about roles and the use of consultants. Results showed the majority of participants had no knowledge of AASP CC (72%). Participants who had heard of AASP CC had a significantly greater understanding of sport psychology (t(529.10) = 4.82, p < .01) and significantly higher levels of confidence in sport psychology consultation (t(730) = 2.06, p < .05). Participants were also asked to rank who they would hire based on credentials, with “experienced AASP-CC” being ranked first the most times (n = 193). The results are encouraging however, reports of familiarity with AASP or CC-status seems to contradict participants’ reported preference to hire CC’s. While the desire to hire a CC is favorable, results suggest more education may be necessary to inform consumers about certification. Specific results and implications for AASP and CC’s will be discussed and recommendations for future research will be made.

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