Exploring the Relative Importance of Factors That Influence Student-Athletes’ School-Choice Decisions

A Case Study of One Canadian University

Authors

  • Chris R. Chard Brock University
  • Luke R. Potwarka University of Waterloo

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1123/jis.2016-0014

Keywords:

Canadian interuniversity sport (CIS), U sports, analytic hierarchy process (AHP), decision-making, recruiting, school-choice

Abstract

Understanding salient factors influencing student-athletes’ decisions to attend particular university institutions is of crucial importance to scholars and athletic administrators. Consequently, our research was concerned with two separate but interrelated substantive and methodological objectives: i) to gain insights into the relative importance of 12 school choice decision-making factors influencing Canadian student-athletes; and ii) to explore the efficacy of a multicriteria decision-making (MCDM) method for analyzing data in the context of the current investigation. Specifically, we employed the Analytic Hierarchy Process (AHP) to better understand the relative importance of school choice decision factors. The results of the AHP analysis on Canadian student-athletes’ school choice decisionmaking showed that having the desired academic program was the most important influence. This item was almost twice as important as the reputation of the school, and over twice as important as scholarship value, athletic facilities, chance to win, and reputation of the head coach. Of the 12 factors considered, these six had the greatest influence on student-athletes’ decision-making. Implications of our findings for research and recruitment efforts are discussed.

Author Biographies

Chris R. Chard, Brock University

Chard is with the Dept. of Sport Management, Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada. Potwarka is with the Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.

Luke R. Potwarka, University of Waterloo

Chard is with the Dept. of Sport Management, Brock University, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada. Potwarka is with the Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies, University of Waterloo, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.

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Published

2017-06-01

How to Cite

Chard, C. R., & Potwarka, L. R. (2017). Exploring the Relative Importance of Factors That Influence Student-Athletes’ School-Choice Decisions: A Case Study of One Canadian University. Journal of Intercollegiate Sport, 10(1), 22–43. https://doi.org/10.1123/jis.2016-0014