Athletic and Student Identities of Swedish Adolescent Student-Athletes: Mixed-Method Exploration
2013 (English)In: Abstracts of the ISSP 13th World Congress of Sport Psychology: July 21-26, 2013, Beijing Sport University, Beijing, China, Beijing, 2013, 153-154 p.Conference paper, Poster (Refereed)
The overall aim of the project was to explore Swedish adolescent student-athletes’ transition to, and adaptation at, national elite sport schools (NESS) based on the holistic lifespan perspective (Wylleman & Lavallee, 2004) and career transition framework (Stambulova, 2003). Transitional variables (e.g., demands, coping strategies, personal and environmental resources,) covering student athletes’ sport, studies, and private life were studied in line with their athletic and student identities. This presentation will particularly focus on how student-athletes’ dual career experiences affect their athletic and student identities during their first year at NESS. Participants (main sample) were first year student-athletes of 15-16 years old representing different sports and 33 NESS across the country. A longitudinal mixed-method research design was implemented with the first quantitative measurement conducted in autumn (n = 261), and the second measurement in spring (n = 250). Athletic and student identities were measured using the Athletic Identity Measurement Scale (AIMS; Brewer, Van Raalte, & Linder, 1993) and the Student Identity Measurement Scale (SIMS; Engström & Stambulova, 2010). Additionally, in-depth interviews were conducted with 10 participants from the main sample two times during the year (autumn and spring). Interview guides were structured in three parts exploring student athletes’ near past (e.g., previous experiences of combining sport, studies and private life or the dual career experiences between the two interviews), present status in the transition (e.g., demands, coping strategies, perception of themselves as students and athletes), and future expectations. The results of both quantitative and qualitative exploration of the student-athletes’ identity issue can be summarized as follows: (1) no significant changes were found in athletic and student identities between the two quantitative measurements, however, athletic identity was significantly higher than student identity in both measurements, (2) interviews confirmed that student-athletes perceived themselves to have higher athletic than student identity but also that inter-individual variations in their perceptions existed, (3) there were intra-individual differences in how student-athletes perceived their self-identities between the first and the second interview, (4) there was a clear message from the interviews that searching for an optimal balance between student and athlete roles and also between athletic and student identities was perceived as a key issue in adjusting to the dual career at NESS. The participants’ narratives will be used to illustrate the complexity of student-athletes’ perception of their athletic and student identities.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Beijing, 2013. 153-154 p.
dual career, identity, longitudinal mix-method design, student-athlete
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:hh:diva-32798OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hh-32798DiVA: diva2:1059124
ISSP 13th World Congress of Sport Psychology, July 21-26, 2013, Beijing, China