Physical Education Graduate Students’ Perceptions of Institutional and Relational Factors

Gabriella M. Mcloughlin, K. Andrew R. Richards

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Understanding physical education graduate students’ perceptions of their educational experiences has implications for the design and conduct of training program experiences. Occupational socialization theory presents one perspective through which these experiences can be understood and interpreted. Due to differences in disciplinary norms, specific research related to physical education graduate student socialization is warranted. The purpose of this study was to identify institutional and relational factors that influence graduate student satisfaction and perceptions of program quality. Participants included 90 physical education graduate students (47 female, 43 male) who responded to a cross-sectional online survey that included forced-choice and open-ended questions about their experience with various aspects of graduate education. Data were analyzed using descriptive statistics, multiple linear regression, and moderation analyses. Results indicated that, while perceived program quality and student satisfaction are strongly related, these relationships are moderated by the student’s perception of their academic advisor and research training. These findings align with previous literature and stress the importance of further research into professional development of graduate students.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)75-88
JournalInternational Journal of Kinesiology in Higher Education
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 3 2017
Externally publishedYes


  • occupational socialization theory
  • perceptions
  • survey research
  • graduate education


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