Spanish female student-athletes’ perception of key competencies for successful dual career adjustment

Andrea Perez-Rivases, Juan Pons, Susana Regüela, Carme Viladrich, Susana Pallarès, Miquel Torregrossa

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Abstract

Research addressing dual career (DC) has recently become an important research focus in Europe. Following a DC pathway seems to differ depending on national policies and cultural factors affecting student-athletes. Therefore, this study aimed to examine Spanish female student-athletes’ perceptions of (a) generic DC competencies (in terms of importance, possession, and a need to develop); (b) difficult DC situations (i.e., challenging scenarios) they experienced and how successfully they coped; and (c) specific DC competencies related to successful coping with experienced DC scenarios. Seventy-two female student-athletes (Mage = 17.53; SD = 0.73) completed the Spanish versions of the Dual Career Competency Questionnaire for Athletes (DCCQ-A) and Dual Career Competency Questionnaire for Athletes with scenario extension (DCCQ-ASc). Results showed that participants perceived the need to better develop all their DC competencies (e.g., “Ability to resolve conflicts”; “Ability to use your time efficiently”). The two most frequently experienced DC scenarios were social life and missing significant days of study, and the two less experienced were the selection of a study plan and leaving home and family. Participants reported prioritising different competencies depending on the specific DC scenario they were coping with. No differences in the competencies prioritised for successful and less successful coping were observed. Discussion emphasises the need to continue developing career assistance programmes based on enhancing individual resources to manage different DC scenarios and the situation of discrimination in female sport.

Original languageAmerican English
JournalInternational Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology
DOIs
Publication statusAccepted in press - 1 Jan 2020

Keywords

  • Coping
  • Secondary school
  • Sportswomen
  • Transition

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