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For my action research project it is easiest for me to tell about the research problem by breaking down the area into smaller sections. Thus I will describe the overlying issue, the smaller problems involved with it, and some initial thoughts on how these problems might be solved. In the field of Sport Management, more particularly the management of collegiate sports, a large portion of the directing body's time is spent on dealing with conduct issues of the group they are in charge of managing, Student-Athletes. In order to let Student-Athletes know what is expected of them by the university in which they attend, a Student-Athlete Code of Conduct is available for revue through a number of different medians. The problem is that this document is used for more of an insurance policy for the athletic department than as an actual expectation for its Student-Athletes. More often than not the administration will reference the code of conduct after an issue and state that the Student-Athlete broke the agreement and will thus be punished. My action research project will look at the code of conduct on many levels. Initially, I will take a deep look into the actual language of the code of conduct and compare it to others around the country. If an athletic department is expecting a document to convey a message, it needs to be sure that message is clear. For the end of this phase I will write a series of suggestions on how the code of conduct could either be more complete, concise, or clear, depending on what its weaknesses are. Next, I will look at how the code of conduct itself is distributed to Student-Athletes. Even if the Code itself is perfectly written and flawlessly conveys the message to the Student-Athletes, it is doing the department no go if all it is doing is sitting on a shelf. For this section I will research the different ways a document or information can be presented and once the most popular and effective methods are summarized, I will suggest which method would be best for the given population. This will most likely result in multiple medians being available with the idea that repetition will help the population understand the information. Finally, I will research the effectiveness of a code of conduct in general. This portion will contain the largest amount of qualitative research. Here I am interested in knowing the decision making process of a Student-Athlete and whether or not the Code of Conduct comes into mind while they are making potentially dangerous decisions. This portion is important because if the Student-Athlete chooses to disregard the Code of Conduct while they are interacting with society it may be necessary to create a more effective mode. However I am hoping my research will conclude that if a Student-Athlete is fully aware of the consequences of their actions they will choose to make the correct, more responsible decisions. So after all of that my general research question is, "How effective is the Student-Athlete Code of Conduct in effecting the decisions Student-Athletes make?"
Welcome to the blog of KIN/REC 5981: Research Methodology in Kinesiology, Recreation, and Sport.