The Test of Attentional and Interpersonal Style (TAIS) has been used to examine the attention-performance relationship in sport with mixed results. However, sport-specific versions of the TAIS attentional subscales appear to provide improved measurement of attentional processes in sport. The present study farther evaluated the utility of a sport-specific TAIS. A secondary aim was to examine the relationship between attentional style and competitive trait anxiety. The TAIS and a basketball-specific form (BB-TAIS) were administered to 110 basketball players classified into three skill-level groups. Both instruments were psychometrically similar. The bandwidth dimension was supported, although it appeared to be multidimensional. The validity of the direction dimension, however, remains inconclusive. Neither instrument was able to reliably discriminate between basketball players of different skill levels. Predicted relationships, however, were obtained between the BB-TAIS subscales and measures of competitive trait anxiety. The use of the TAIS as a research instrument for examining attentional styles in sport is questioned.
The authors are with the Department of Psychology at the University of Melbourne, Parkville, Victoria, Australia, 3052.