School of Education


Doctor of Education in Curriculum & Instruction (EdD)


Kimberly Brown


Athletic Training Education, Clinical Education, Clinical Preceptors, Clinical Site


Education | Health and Physical Education | Higher Education


The purpose of this phenomenological study was to describe the shared clinical experiences of post Spring 2014 graduates of CAATE-accredited professional master’s degree programs. The theories guiding this qualitative study were Kolb’s (1984) experiential learning theory as it theorizes that students learn best through experiences, such as clinical education (Witt, Colbert, & Kelly, 2013), and Astin’s (1999) student involvement theory that claims that the effectiveness of any educational policy or program is directly related to the capacity of that policy or practice to increase student involvement, meaning that a clinical education program that is designed to encourage student involvement will be more successful than programs that lack efforts to increase involvement. The researcher sought to answer the question of how master’s level athletic training program graduates describe their clinical education experiences. Qualitative data was collected through semi-structured interviews, asynchronous online focus group discussion forums, and prompted journaling. Research participants were graduates of master’s entry-level athletic training programs post Spring 2014. Data collection occurred in-person, on the telephone, and via the Internet. Data was analyzed by the researcher using transcendental phenomenological coding methods. The phenomenon was described as an active experience that required hard work and was influenced by the preceptors and resources available during clinical education.