Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Educational Psychology & Higher Education

First Committee Member

Alice Corkill

Second Committee Member

Nancy Lough

Third Committee Member

Vicki Rosser

Fourth Committee Member

Jennifer Pharr

Number of Pages



The student-athlete literature if rife with studies that examine the factors that appear to improve or inhibit academic or athletic performance. However, internal characteristics that may influence variations in performance have been understudied, and athletic performance tends to be examined separately from academic performance. This study examined how different types of Division I FBS performers – high academic, high athletic; high academic, low athletic; low athletic, high academic; and low academic, low athletic – differ on three theoretical and conceptual frameworks representing internal factors. Each of the frameworks, Mindset, Personal Growth Initiative, and Student-Athlete Experiences, have positive attributes relative to performance, development, and well-being. Although not all variables were statistically significant, there were meaningful differences between high and low academic performers on academic experiences. Student-athletes in this sample also displayed a growth mindset towards academic and athletic abilities, as well as high levels of Personal Growth Initiative. In addition, student-athletes who performed at high levels athletically did not report fewer experiences academically. This study also contributed an athletic performance metric that can be used and improved upon to quantify individual athletic performance in higher education, irrespective of sport.


academic performance; athletic performance; experiences; internal factors; mindset; personal growth


Education | Educational Psychology | Psychology

File Format


Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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