Perceived Attitude Towards Feedback in Athletic Training Clinical Education

Jessica Lynn Emlich


The purpose of this study was to measure and compare the perceived mean attitudinal score towards clinical instructor feedback, of Commission on Accreditation of Athletic Training Education (CAATE) accredited athletic training education programs (ATEP) program directors/clinical coordinators and affiliated clinical instructors. Additionally, the investigator was interested to see if relationships between attitudes towards feedback and the respondent's age, sex, employment setting and years of professional experience existed. There were a total of one hundred and fifty eight participants in this study that comprised the two groups. Program directors and clinical coordinators (PD/CC) comprised 59 of the responses and 99 were completed by clinical instructors (CI). The participants were randomly selected from the National Athletic Trainers' Association District 4. An online survey, The Perceived Attitude Towards Feedback Instrument (PAFI), was used to collect the data from the two sample groups. This instrument was comprised of three parts; demographics, Likert-type items, and a vignette section. The vignettes were used to compare responses based on the variable of years of experience. Independent t-tests and bivariate correlation analyses were used for testing the hypotheses. The analyses revealed that both groups (PD/CC and CI's) have similar positive attitudes towards clinical instructor feedback. Additionally, attitude towards clinical instructor feedback is independent of a person's sex, age, employment setting and years of professional experience. The findings of this study do not indicate the need for any major reform in the area of athletic training clinical education. The profession of athletic training can look favorably on these findings knowing that those involved in clinical education have positive attitudes towards clinical instructor feedback. Implications of these findings show a need for further investigation into the sub-constructs of feedback as it relates to athletic training clinical education and the exploration of the frequency that feedback is given.