A Systematic Literature Review on the Academic and Athletic Identities of Student-Athletes
Keywords:identity, education, sport, talent development, dual careers
Academic and athletic identities are related to performance and wellbeing indicators in both the educational and sport domains, respectively. This paper presents a systematic literature review examining empirical research into the academic and athletic identities of student-athletes in dual (education and sport) careers. The 42 records identified in this review suggest that research on the academic and athletic identities of student-athletes has focused on the themes of: identity development, role conflict, career development and motivation, and student-athlete stereotypes. Future research directions are considered, including the need for mixed-methods and longitudinal assessments of academic and athletic identities to assess to dynamic nature of identity development, and to ascertain how these relate to future performance and wellbeing outcomes.
Anderson, D. (2012). A balanced approach to excellence: Life-skill intervention and elite performance. Reflective Practice, 13, 609-620. http:doi.org/10.1080/14623943.20 12.67 0625
*Antshel, K. M., VanderDrift, L. E., & Pauline, J. S. (2016). The role of athletic identity in the relationship between difficulty thinking or concentrating and academic service use in NCAA student-athletes. Journal of Clinical Sport Psychology, 10, 309-323. http:doi.org/10.1123/jcsp.2015-0028
*Aquilina, D. (2013). A study of the relationship between Elite Athletes' educational development and sporting performance. International Journal of the History of Sport, 30, 374–392. http:doi.org/10.1080/0952 3367.2013.765723
*Beron, K. J., & Piquero, A. R. (2016). Studying the determinants of student‐athlete grade point average: The roles of identity, context, and academic interests. Social Science Quarterly, 97, 142-160.
*Bimper, A. Y. (2014). Game changers: The role athletic identity and racial identity play on academic performance. Journal of College Student Development, 55, 805-807.
*Blodgett, A. T., & Schinke, R. J. (2015). “When you’re coming from the reserve you’re not supposed to make it”: Stories of Aboriginal athletes pursuing sport and academic careers in “mainstream” cultural contexts. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 21, 115–124. http:doi.org/10.1016/j.psychsport.2015.03.001
Brewer, B. W., Van Raalte, J. L., & Linder, D. E. (1993). Athletic identity: Hercules' muscles or Achilles heel? International Journal of Sport Psychology, 24, 237-254.
*Brown, D. J., Fletcher, D., Henry, I., Borrie, A., Emmett, J., Buzza, A., & Wombwell, S. (2015). A British university case study of the transitional experience of student-athletes. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 21, 78-90. http:doi.org/10.1016/j.psyc hsport.2015.04.002
Brown, C., & Hartley, D. L. (1998). Athletic identity and career maturity of male college student athletes. International Journal of Sport Psychology, 29, 17-26.
Brown, G., & Potrac, P. (2009). ‘You’ve not made the grade, son’: De-selection and identity disruption in elite level youth football. Soccer & Society, 10, 143-159. http:doi.org/ 10.1080 /14660970802601613
Chen, S., Snyder, S., & Magner, M. (2010). The effects of sport participation on student-athletes’ and non-athlete students’ social life and identity. Journal of Issues in Intercollegiate Athletics, 3, 176-193.
Cummins, P., & O'Boyle, I. (2015). Psychosocial factors involved in transitions from college to postcollege careers for male NCAA division-I basketball players. Journal of Career Development, 42, 33-47. http:doi.org/10.1177/0894845314532713
Erikson, E. H. (1968). Identity: Youth and Crisis. Norton.
* Erpič, S. C., Wylleman, P., & Zupancic, M. (2004). The effect of athletic and non-athletic factors on the sports career termination process. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 5, 45-59.
*Falls, D., & Wilson, B. (2013). 'Reflexive modernity' and the transition experiences of university athletes. International Review for the Sociology of Sport, 48, 572-593. http:doi.org/10.1177/1012690212445014
*Feltz, D. L., Schneider, R., Hwang, S., & Skogsberg, N. J. (2013). Predictors of collegiate student-athletes' susceptibility to stereotype threat. Journal of College Student Development, 54, 184-201
*Foster, S. J. L., & Huml, M. R. (2017). The relationship between athletic identity and academic major chosen by student-athletes. International Journal of Exercise Science, 10, 915-925.
*Fuches, P. X. Wagner, H., Hannola, H., Niemisalo, N., Pehme, A., Puhke, R., Marinsek, M., Strmecki, A., Svetec, D., Capranica, L., & Guidotti, F. (2016). European student-athletes’ perceptions on dual career outcomes and services. Kinesiologia Slovenica, 22, 31-48.
Fuller, R. D. (2014). Transition experiences out of intercollegiate athletics: A meta-synthesis. The Qualitative Report, 19, 1-15. https://nsuworks.no va.edu/tqr/vol19/iss46/1
Gecas, V. (1982). The self-concept. Annual Review of Sociology, 8, 1-33. http:doi.org/10.1146/ annurev.so.08.080182.000245
*Geraniosova, K., & Ronkainen, N. (2014). The experience of dual career through Slovak athletes’ eyes. Physical Culture and Sport: Studies and Research, 66, 53-64. http:doi.org/10.1515/pcssr-2015-0005
Green, S. L., & Weinberg, R. S. (2001). Relationships among athletic identity, coping skills, social support, and the psychological impact of injury in recreational participants. Journal of Applied Sport Psychology, 13, 40-59. http:doi.org/10.1080/104132001 09339003
Guidotti, F., Cortis, C., & Capranica, L. (2015). Dual career of European student-athletes: A systematic literature review. Kinesiologia Slovenica, 21, 5-20.
*Harrison, C. K, & Lawrence, S. M. (2004). Female and male student athletes' perceptions of career transition in sport and higher education: A visual elicitation and qualitative assessment. Journal of Vocational Education and Training, 56, 485-506
Hatch, J. (2002). Doing Qualitative Research in Education Settings. State University of New York Press.
*Hawley, L. R., Hosch, H. M., & Bovaird, J. A. (2014). Exploring social identity theory and the 'black sheep effect' among college student-athletes and non-athletes. Journal of Sport Behavior, 37, 56-76.
*Healy, L., Ntoumanis, N., & Duda, J. (2016). Goal motives and multiple-goal striving in sport and academia: A person-centered investigation of goal motives and inter-goal relations. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, 19, 1010–1014. http:doi.org/ 10.1016/j.jsams.2016.03.001.
Horton, R. S., & Mack, D. E. (2000). Athletic identity in marathon runners: Functional focus or dysfunctional commitment? Journal of Sport Behavior, 23, 101–119.
Houle, J. L. W., Brewer, B. W., & Kluck, A. S. (2010). Developmental trends in athletic identity: A two-part retrospective study. Journal of Sport Behavior, 33, 146-159.
*Huang, C., Chou, C., & Hung, T. (2016). College experiences and career barriers among semi-professional student-athletes: The influences of athletic identity and career self-efficacy. The Career Development International, 21, 571-586. http:doi.org/10.1 108/CDI-09-2015-0127
Ivarsson, A., Stenling, A., Fallby, J., Johnson, U., Borg, E., & Johansson, G. (2015). The predictive ability of the talent development environment on youth elite football players’ wellbeing: A person-centered approach. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 16, 15-23.
Jones, S. R., & McEwen, M. K. (2000). A conceptual model of multiple dimensions of identity. Journal of College Student Development, 41, 405-414.
*Killeya-Jones, L. (2005). Identity structure, role discrepancy and psychological adjustment in male college student-athletes. Journal of Sport Behavior, 28, 167-185.
*Kimball, A. C. (2007). "You signed the line": Collegiate student-athletes' perceptions of autonomy. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 8, 818-835. http:doi.org/10.1016/j.psy chsport.2007.03.005
Lairio, M., Puukari, S., & Kouvo, A. (2013). Studying at university as part of student life and identity construction. Scandinavian Journal of Educational Research, 57, 115-131. http:doi.org/10.1080/00313831.2011.621973
*Lally, P. (2007). Identity and athletic retirement: A prospective study. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 8, 85-99.
*Lally, P. S., & Kerr, G. A. (2005). The career planning, athletic identity, and student role identity of intercollegiate student athletes. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, 76, 275-285. http:doi.org/10.1080/02701367.2005.10599299
Li, M., & Sum, R. K. W. (2017). A meta-synthesis of elite athletes’ experiences in dual career development. Asia Pacific Journal of Sport and Social Science, 6, 99-17. http:doi.org/10.1080/21640599.2017.1317481
Linville, P. W. (1985). Self-complexity and affective extremity: Don't put all of your eggs in one cognitive basket. Social Cognition, 3, 94-120. http:doi.org/10.1521/soco.1985.3 .1.94
*López de Subijana, C., Barriopedro, M., & Sanz, I. (2015). Dual career motivation and identity on elite athletes. Revista de Psicologia del Deporte, 24, 55–57.
*Lupo, C., Guidotti, F., Goncalves, C., Moreira, L., Doupona-Topic, M., Bellardini, H., Tonkonogi, M., Colin, A., & Capranica, L. (2015). Motivation towards dual career of European student-athletes. European Journal of Sport Science, 15, 151–160.
*Lupo, C., Mosso, C. O., Guidotti, F., Cugliari, G., Pizzigalli, L., & Rainoldi, A. (2017a). The adapted Italian version of the baller identity measurement scale to evaluate the student-Athletes' identity in relation to gender, age, type of sport, and competition level. PLoS One, 12, 1-11. http:doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0169278.
*Lupo, C., Mosso, C. O., Guidotti, F., Cugliari, G., Pizzigalli, L., & Rainoldi, A. (2017b). Motivation toward dua career of Italian student-athletes enrolled in different university paths. Sport Sciences for Health, 13, 485-494. http:doi.org/10.1007%2 Fs11332-016-0327-4
*Lupo, C., Tessitore, A., Capranica, L., Rauter, S., & Doupona-Topic, M. (2012). Motivation for a dual career: Italian and Slovenian student-athletes. Kinesiologia Slovenica, 18(3), 47-56.
Marcia, J. E. (1966). Development and validation of ego-identity status. Journal of Personal and Social Psychology, 3, 551–558.
*Melendez, M. C. (2009). Psychosocial influences on college adjustment in division 1 student-athletes: The role of athletic identity. Journal of College Student Retention: Research, Theory and Practice, 11, 345-361. http:doi.org/10.2190/CS.11.3.c
*Mignano, A. C., Brewer, B. W., Winter, C., & Van Raalte, J. L. (2006). Athletic identity and student involvement of female athletes at NCAA division III women's and coeducational colleges. Journal of College Student Development, 47, 457-464.
*Miller, P. S., & Kerr, G. A. (2003). The role experimentation of intercollegiate student athletes. The Sport Psychologist, 17, 196-219.
Moher, D., Liberati, A., Tetzlaff, J., Altman, D. G: The PRISMA Group. (2009). Preferred reporting items for systematic reviews and meta-analyses: The PRISMA Statement. PloS Medicine, e1000097. http:doi.org/10.1371/journal.pmed.1000097
Murphy, G. M., Petitpas, A.J., & Brewer, B.W. (1996). Identity foreclosure, athletic identity, and career maturity in intercollegiate athletes. The Sport Psychologist, 10, 239–246.
National Collegiate Athletics Association. (2017). How We Support College Athletes. http://www.ncaa.org/about/resources/media-center/ncaa-101/how-we-support-college-athletes
Osborne, J. W., & Jones, B. D. (2011). Identification with academics and motivation to achieve in school: How the structure of the self influences academic outcomes. Educational Psychology Review, 23, 131-158.
Rafaeli-Mor, E., Gotlib, I. H., & Revelle, W. (1999). The meaning and measurement of self-complexity. Personality and Individual Differences, 27, 341-356. http:doi.org/10.10 16/s0191-8869(98)00247-5.
*Riciputi, S., & Erdal, K. (2017). The effect of stereotype threat on student-athlete math performance. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 32, 54-57. http:doi.org/10.1016/ j.psychsport .2017.06.003
Ronkainen, N. J., Kavoura, A., & Ryba, T. V. (2016). A meta-study of athletic identity research in sport psychology: Current status and future directions. International Review of Sport and Exercise Psychology, 9, 45-64. http:doi.org/10.1080/1750984 X.2015.1096414
Ryba, T. V., Stambulova, N. B., Ronkainen, N. J., Bundgaard, J., & Selänne, H. (2015). Dual career pathways of transnational athletes. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 21, 125-134. http:doi.org/10.1016/j.psychsport.2014.06.002
Schulz, R., & Heckhausen, J. (1996). A life span model of successful aging. American Psychologist, 51, 702. https://socialecology.uci.edu/sites/socialecol ogy.uci.edu/files/users/heckhaus/schulzheck_ampscy96.pdf
*Settles, I. H., Sellers, R. M., & Damas, A., Jr. (2002). One role or two? The function of psychological separation in role conflict. Journal of Applied Psychology, 87, 574-582. http:doi.org/10.1037/0021-9010.87.3.574
Simon, H. D. Bosworth, C., Fujita, S., & Jensen, M. (2007). The athlete stigma in higher education. College Student Journal, 41, 251-273.
Skaalvik, E., & Skaalvik, S. (2002). Internal and external frames of reference of academic self-concept. Educational Psychologist, 37, 233-244. http:doi.org/10.1207/S15326 985EP3704_3
Smith, G. (2014). Standard Deviations: Flawed Assumptions, Tortured Data, and Other Ways to Lie With Statistics. The Overlook Press.
Stambulova, N. B., Stephan, Y., & Japhag, U. (2007). Athletic retirement: A cross-national comparison of elite French and Swedish athletes. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 8, 101-118. http:doi.org/10.1016/j.psychsport.2006.05.002
Stambulova, N. B., & Wylleman, P. (2015). Dual career development and transitions. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 21, 1-3. http:doi.org/10.1016/j.psychsport.2 015.05.003
Stambulova, N. B., & Wylleman, P. (2019). Psychology of athletes’ dual careers: A state-of-the-art critical review of the Europeans discourse. Psychology of Sport & Exercise, 42, 74-88. http:doi.org/10.1016/j.psychsport.2018.11.013
Stets, J. E., & Burke, P. J. (2000). Identity theory and social identity theory. Social Psychology Quarterly, 63, 224-237
*Stoltenburg, A. L., Kamphoff, C. S., & Bremer, K. L. (2011). Transitioning out of sport: The psychosocial effects of collegiate athletes' career-ending injuries. Athletic Insight, 13, 1-11. http://www.athleticinsight.com/Vol13Iss2/Feature.htm
*Stone, J., Harrison, C. K., & Mottley, J. (2012). 'Don't call me a student-athlete': The effect of identity priming on stereotype threat for academically engaged African American college athletes. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 34, 99-106. http:doi.org/10. 1080/ 01973533.2012.655624
*Sturm, J. E., Feltz, D.L., Gilson, T.A. (2011). A comparison of athlete and student identity for division I and division III athletes. Journal of Sport Behavior, 34, 295-306.
Stryker, S., & Burke, P. J. (2000). The past, present, and future of an identity theory. Social Psychology Quarterly, 63, 284-297.
*Sum, R. W., Tsai, H-H., Ha, A. S. C., Cheng, C., Wang, F., & Li, M. (2017). Social-ecological determinants of elite student athletes’ dual career development in Hong Kong and Taiwan, Sage Open, 7, 1-12. http:doi.org/10.1177/2158244017707798
*Tekavc, J., Wylleman, P., & Erpič, S. C. (2015). Perceptions of dual career development among elite level swimmers and basketball players. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 21, 27–41. http:doi.org/10.1016/j.psychsport.2015.03.002
Thoits, P. A. (1983). Multiple identities and psychological well-being: A reformulation and test of the social isolation hypothesis. American Sociological Review, 48, 174-187.
*Torregrosa, M., Ramis, Y., Pallarés, S., Azócar, F., & Selva, C. (2015). Olympic athletes back to retirement: A qualitative longitudinal study. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 21, 50–56. http:doi.org/10.1016/j.psychsport.2015.03.003.
*Tshube, T., & Feltz, D.L. (2015). The relationship between dual-career and post-sport career transition among elite athletes in South Africa, Botswana, Namibia and Zimbabwe. Psychology of Sport & Exercise, 21, 109–114.
Van Rens, F. E. C. A., Borkoles, E., Farrow, D., Curran, T., & Polman, R. C. (2016). Development and initial validation of the Role Strain Questionnaire for Junior Athletes (RSQ-JA). Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 24, 168-178. http:doi.org/10. 1016/j.psychsport.2016.02.004
*Van Rens, F. E. C. A., Ashley, R. A., & Steele, A. R. (2019). Wellbeing and performance in dual careers: The role of academic and athletic identities. Sport Psychologist, 33, 42-51
*Woodruff, A. L., & Schallert, D. L. (2008). Studying to play, playing to study: Nine college student-athletes' motivational sense of self. Contemporary Educational Psychology, 33, 34-57. http:doi.org/10.1016/j.cedpsych.2007.04.001
Wylleman, P., & Lavallee, D. (2004). A developmental perspective on transitions faced by athletes. In M. R. Weiss (Ed.), Developmental Sport and Exercise Psychology: A Lifespan Perspective, 507-527. Fitness Information Technology.
*Yopyk, D. J. A., & Prentice, D. A. (2005). Am I an athlete or a student? Identity salience and stereotype threat in student-athletes. Basic and Applied Social Psychology, 27, 329-336. http:doi.org/10.1207/s15324834basp2704
*Yukhymenko-Lescroart, M. A. (2014). Students and athletes? Development of the Academic and Athletic Identity Scale (AAIS). Sport, Exercise, and Performance Psychology, 3, 89-101. http:doi.org/10.1037/spy0000009
*Yukhymenko-Lescroart, M. A. (2018). On identity and sport conduct of student athletes: Considering athletic and academic contexts. Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 34, 10-19. http:doi.org/10.1016/j.psychsport.2017.09.006
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2020 Dr Andrea R. Steele , Dr Fleur E. C. A. van Rens, Ms Rebecca Ashley
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC-BY-NC-ND) License
1. License. You retain the copyright for your work. You here by grant to us a worldwide, non-exclusive, perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, sublicensable license to:
• Reproduce, distribute and display the edited manuscript in the Journal of Intercollegiate Sport (and other publications prepared by us or on our behalf) in any media now or hereafter known (including without limitation electronic publications such as the Internet, Google Scholar, and social media)
We do not restrict your distribution or use of the manuscript following publication in the Journal of Intercollegiate Sport (in fact, we encourage it!). However, we have the right to publish the manuscript first on the journal website. Thus, the foregoing licenses are exclusive to us prior to our publication of the manuscript. You confirm that you have disclosed to us all previous or pending public disseminations of the manuscript, including without limitation any publications or acceptances by other journals or disseminations via websites or conference proceedings.
2. Other Confirmations. You confirm that you are the manuscripts sole author(s); you have the right to convey the foregoing licenses; the manuscript does not infringe any third party copyright, publicity/privacy right or other proprietary right; and the manuscript is not defamatory or otherwise unlawful. You shall defend and indemnify us against all claims based on any alleged breach of your confirmations in this contract.
Compensation: You will receive one (1) free copy (PDF) of the article published online in the Journal of Intercollegiate Sport. You will receive no royalty or other monetary return from the Journal of Intercollegiate Sport for use of the article. You do, however, have our extreme gratitude!
3. Entire Contract. This contract is the sole and exclusive agreement between the parties regarding the manuscript and supersedes all prior conversations and understandings regarding its subject matter. This contract may be modified or supplemented only by a mutually signed writing.