Fall 2001 Survey: Sport
General Purpose | Major Findings | Interview Schedule

General Introduction
Fall 2001
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Fall 2002

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Fall 2003
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Fall 2004 / Spring 2005
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Spring 2009

General Purpose, Questions, and Sample

Despite the prominence of college sports, there is very little systematic evidence on the impact of athletic participation on students’ lives. Some recent publications such as Shulman and Bowen’s The Game of Life raise questions about the widening gulf between varsity athletes and other students. Are athletes less prepared academically? Do they have a different educational experience? Do they develop different life goals and values than their classmates? The national debate on these questions was the impetus for the fall survey. The general goal of the survey was to describe the past and present sports experiences of all Holy Cross students.

The fall HCSS included questions that addressed the following topics:

  1. Students’ pre-college sport experiences, from informal games to organized youth sports and sport participation in elementary school and high school.
  2. The experiences of Holy Cross varsity athletes, such as time devoted to their sport, its impact on their academic work, and the effects of sport injuries.
  3. Students’ participation in club sports and intramural sports and attendance at varsity athletic events.
  4. Students’ satisfaction with various aspects of college life, engagement in various college activities, and the importance assigned to certain life goals (e.g., raising a family, being very well off financially).
  5. Other student attitudes and behavior such as political views, volunteerism, and drinking.
  6. Students’ demographic background, including race, religion, age, gender, and parent’s education.
Item 4 questions were drawn from the Cooperative Institutional Research Program (CIRP) Freshman Survey, and a few other questions were drawn from the GSS, but nearly all sports-related questions were developed for this survey.

Interviews in the fall 2001 HCSS were carried out between October 30 and December 5. A sample of 291 respondents was randomly selected from the 2,593 Holy Cross students enrolled and on campus as of October 2001. The population thus excluded, in addition to those students enrolled in Methods of Social Research, all students who were studying away or abroad or who had taken a leave of absence. A total of 251 interviews were completed, yielding an 86 percent response rate and a margin of error of about 6 percent.

Among the 251 respondents, 52 percent were female, 87 percent were white, 95 percent ranged in age from 18 to 21, and 80 percent identified themselves as Catholics. Eighty percent of the respondents lived on campus. And because of the sizeable number of third-year students who study abroad, there were fewer respondents from the third-year class (21 percent) than the other classes (25 to 29 percent).

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