Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Psychology & Higher Education

First Committee Member

Vicki J. Rosser

Second Committee Member

Mario C. Martinez

Third Committee Member

Elizabeth Baldizan

Fourth Committee Member

Kurt Stahura

Number of Pages



Many research studies have examined the academic performance and graduation rates of college student-athletes. The limited focus on scholarship student-athletes has overlooked the majority of NCAA student-athletes, those participating in collegiate athletic programs without athletic scholarships. Therefore, this study contributes to a gap in the literature about non-scholarship student-athletes. The following dissertation examined the academic performance, time-to-degree, and demographic and profile characteristics of Division IA scholarship and non-scholarship student-athletes. The theoretical framework for this study was work motivation viewing athletic scholarships as extrinsic rewards. The researcher applied descriptive discriminant analysis utilizing secondary data to compare scholarship and non-scholarship student-athletes across several variables.

Results of this study showed that non-scholarship student-athletes were described by the variables of sport (Women's Outdoor Track and Field), race (Asian, White), sport type (Individual), and sex (Female). Non-Scholarship student-athletes had higher grade point averages than scholarship student-athletes. The scholarship student-athlete group was described by race (Black), sport (Football, Men's Basketball, Women's Basketball), sport type (Team), and sex (Male). Scholarship student-athletes graduated in fewer semesters than non-scholarship student-athletes did. This finding suggests that academic performance and time-to-degree variables are inversely related based on scholarship status. The results of the study showed significant differences between the scholarship and non-scholarship student-athlete groups based on demographic, academic performance, and time-to-degree variables.


Academic achievement; Athletes; Athletics; College athletes; College sports; Intercollegiate; NCAA; Scholarships; Sport


Higher Education Administration | Sports Management | Sports Studies

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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