A Growth Curve Analysis of Mandatory Student Athletics Fees


  • Willis A. Jones University of Kentucky
  • Michael J. Rudolph University of Kentucky
  • Michael Brown University of Kentucky




growth modeling, college costs, SEM, student fees


This study used growth curve modeling to estimate the growth trajectory of mandatory student athletics fees at public NCAA Division I universities from 2004–2016. We specifically focused on three measures of athletics fees; total athletics fees, athletics fees per FTE, and athletics fees as a percentage of total student costs. We found that in general the growth trajectory of athletics fees was positive, but that the rate of growth has declined over the years. We also found that on average less than 5% of student costs are directly attributable to athletics fees and that the growth trajectory of athletics fees differs significantly based on NCAA Division I subdivision affiliation. These findings have implications for policymakers and commentators interested in the role athletics fees play in college student costs.




How to Cite

Jones, W. A., Rudolph, M. J., & Brown, M. (2018). A Growth Curve Analysis of Mandatory Student Athletics Fees. Journal of Intercollegiate Sport, 11(2), 172–192. https://doi.org/10.1123/jis.2018-0013