Authors: Martha G. Dettl-Rivera1, Diane L. Gill2, Erin Reifsteck2
1Physical Education, Sport and Human Performance Department, Winthrop University, Rock Hill, SC, USA
2Department of Kinesiology, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, Greensboro, NC, USA
Martha G. Dettl-Rivera, EdD, SCAT, ATC
116A West Center
Rock Hill, SC 29732
Martha G. Dettl-Rivera is an assistant professor of Athletic Training at Winthrop University in Rock Hill, SC. Her research interest includes mental health in college athletics.
Diane L. Gill is a professor in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in Greensboro, NC. Her research interests include social psychology and physical activity.
Erin Reifsteck is an assistant professor in the Department of Kinesiology at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro in Greensboro, NC. Her current research focuses on promoting lifelong physical activity and health among athletes.
Self-efficacy in college athletics: An exploratory study
This research examined the self-efficacy scores of National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) college athletic trainers from Division I and Division III Southeastern universities. Implementing mental health best practices for college athletic trainers to recognize and to refer student-athletes with mental health issues and disorders have been top priorities of the NCAA and National Athletic Trainers’ Association (NATA). Purpose: This research explored the influence of the USA Mental Health First Aid (MHFA-USA) course of NCAA college athletic trainers’ self-efficacy levels of college student-athletes’ mental health referrals. Methods: A survey approach was adopted to measure participant (n=8) confidence levels of referring student-athletes to qualified mental health care practitioners utilizing a valid self-efficacy scale. Results: Overall, there was improvement in self-efficacy scores immediately following the course as well as consistent improvement at the one-month follow-up survey. Conclusions: There has been no current research on mental health formal trainings of practicing athletic trainers at the NCAA level. Findings from this study were promising as NCAA college athletic trainers’ self-efficacy improved following completion of the MHFA-USA course. Application in Sports: This study offers exploratory insight of the potential training of NCAA college athletic trainers to appropriately and to confidently refer student-athletes to appropriate care. Findings suggest mental health training programs focused on improvement of confidence levels of NCAA college athletic trainers should be considered.(more…)