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  • Author: Beth E. Vanfossen x
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Donald Sabo, Merrill J. Melnick and Beth E. Vanfossen

This study examines the impact of race and gender differences on the social mobility of high school athletes using the longitudinal, panel data of the High School and Beyond study. Regressions of educational and occupational attainment measures on sports participation were estimated for subgroups differentiated by race/ethnic status, gender, and school location (urban, suburban, and rural). It was found that participation in high school sports was most likely to affect the postsecondary status attainment of white males and, to a lesser extent, suburban white females and rural Hispanic females. High school athletic participation had almost no effect on the college-going behavior or educational expectations of black males and females. Interscholastic athletic participation was generally unrelated to postsecondary occupational status and aspirations.

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Merrill J. Melnick, Beth E. Vanfossen and Donald F. Sabo

This study examined the impact of athletic participation on the academic, social, and social–psychological development of high school girls. A panel design and multistage sampling were used to assess the effect of athletic participation on perceived popularity, sex-role attitudes, psychological well-being, sociability, delinquency, academic achievement, educational aspiration, and extracurricular involvement. Data were obtained from transcript records and survey questionnaires administered during the subjects’ sophomore (1980) and senior (1982) years. Multiple regression analysis revealed that athletic participation was strongly related to extracurricular involvement, modestly related to perceived popularity, but only slightly related to delinquency and educational aspiration. Athletic participation was not related to psychological well-being or sex-role attitudes.