Perceptions of Gender in Athletic Administration: Utilizing Role Congruity to Examine (Potential) Prejudice Against Women

in Journal of Sport Management
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  • 1 University of Connecticut
  • | 2 North Carolina State University
  • | 3 University of Northern Colorado
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Based on the tenets of role congruity theory, the current study examined the unequal representation of men and women in athletic administration positions. A total of 158 female and 118 male (n = 276) athletic administrators evaluated a male or female candidate for an athletic director, compliance director, or life skills director position within athletics. Participants indicated no significant differences in masculine ratings of male or female candidates and significant differences in feminine ratings for female candidates in the life skills position. Male and female candidates were perceived as similar in potential and likely success in all positions. Finally, the female candidate was evaluated as significantly less likely to be offered the athletic director position when compared with the male candidate.

Burton is with the Dept. of Kinesiology, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT. Grappendorf is with the Dept. of Parks, Recreation, and Tourism Management, North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC. Henderson is with the Dept. of Sociology, University of Northern Colorado, Greeley, CO.

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