Educational Reform in Athletic Training: A Policy Analysis

Debbie I. Craig

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Objective: To apply a policy-analysis framework to the athletic training educational reform policy that will be fully implemented by January 2004. Data Sources: Policy analysis is not a specific science. No one framework exists for conducting all policy analyses. I used literature from the education, policy analysis, and athletic training fields as data sources to provide background and to create a framework from which to conduct the policy analysis. Data Synthesis: Once the policy-analysis framework was selected, I began data synthesis, using several athletic training sources in support of the findings. The tension among the myriad stakeholders in this policy is clear. Although many see the benefits of accreditation, some experience hardships from the imposed policy. Conclusions/Recommendations: Of the 4 possible alternatives suggested, following the route currently under implementation (Committee on Accreditation of Health Education Programs accreditation) was the most agreeable solution. The goals as stated by the policy makers are attained by the policy. However, issues within the accreditation process itself need to be addressed. Of the many stakeholders in the reform effort, some will see little gain and have many hardships imposed on them. As the policy is implemented, unintended implications will likely arise, as with any new policy. Thus, I recommend that the National Athletic Trainers' Association develop a system dedicated solely to reducing the hardships faced by many of its members as the policy is implemented.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)351-357
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of athletic training
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 2003


  • Certified athletic trainer
  • Commission on Accreditation of Allied Health Education Programs
  • National Athletic Trainers' Association
  • Policy evaluation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine
  • Physical Therapy, Sports Therapy and Rehabilitation


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