This Is AuburnElectronic Theses and Dissertations

Analysis of Clinical Experiences in Athletic Training Education Programs and Performance on the BOC Certification Examination




Searcy, James

Type of Degree



Health and Human Performance


The purpose of this study was to identify the general design of the clinical education experience and determine which factors of this experience might influence performance on the BOC Certification Examination. Part 1 of the study utilized a 47-item Internet questionnaire to gather information from ATEP program directors concerning the design of their clinical education experiences and instruments used to evaluate the level of proficiency achieved by athletic training students. Part 2 of the study involved the use of a 33-item questionnaire to gather information from certified athletic trainers who passed the BOC examination in 2005. General information concerning clinical education experiences and performance on the certification examination was collected. Both questionnaires included closed-ended items with appropriate space for expressing comments. Responses from both program directors and ATCs helped develop a fairly consistent design to the clinical education experience. Students are typically admitted to the ATEP during the second or third academic term of enrollment. The clinical education experiences will general last 5 to 6 terms, include 5 to 6 clinical experiences, and include placement in 2 to 3 clinical settings. Student to ACI ratios are generally low, 3 to 4 students per ACI. Students are evaluated frequently and consistently throughout the educational experiences. Logistic regression analysis of factors associated with the clinical education experience identified GPA and an early start to the clinical experiences as potential predictors for passing the written simulation and practical parts of the certification examination on the first attempt. MANOVA procedures determined statistically significant relationship between the number of clinical settings and performance on parts of the examination. Post hoc analysis identified number of clinical settings does not have a significant effect of passing both the written simulation and practical parts of the examination, but does influence passing at least one of these two parts of the examination. These results support the rotation of students through 3 or more different clinical settings during the clinical education experience