Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Kinesiology, Health, and Sport Science

First Advisor

Richard Hsiao, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Joshua Castle, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Samantha Traver, M.B.A.


This study investigates what challenges, if any, female collegiate women’s volleyball coaches face in a male dominated industry. Participants were selected from the National Collegiate Athletic Association based on the criteria that they are a female currently employed as head women’s volleyball coach and have has at least five years of collegiate coaching experience. The study was qualitative in nature and used a semi-structured interview approach in order to collect the data form the participants. Interview questions were formulated in order to answer the desired research questions: 1. Does gender affect these women coaches work life in regards to advancement, placement, and overall relationships? 1a. Are there common themes across all three NCAA women’s volleyball divisions? 2. Have these women coaches seen improvements in gender equality over the years they have been a part of this male dominated industry? 2a. Have women collegiate sports and women’s coaching jobs been significantly improved since Title IX, and do they think it will keep improving?

Previous research on this topic determined that even though female athletes have increased in number since the passage of Title IX, female head coaches have not (Loggins & Schneider, 2015). It has been reported that the underrepresentation is in result of organizational structure, stereotypes placed on females, domestic responsibilities, and resiliency to changes.

Participants in this study reported that there have been improvements in regards to equality amongst females and their male counterparts which can be attributed to Title IX and strong leadership leading to no barriers being encountered upon entry into the sport industry. However, the findings also show that stigmas still exist that depict women as not being strong coaches and cause people to view them differently than men, and underrepresentation is caused by females’ desire to have a balance between work and family.