Term of Award

Fall 2020

Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Curriculum Studies (Ed.D.)

Document Type and Release Option

Dissertation (open access)

Copyright Statement / License for Reuse

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.


College of Education

Committee Chair

John Weaver

Committee Member 1

Daniel Chapman

Committee Member 2

Ming Fang He

Committee Member 3

Daniel Czech

Committee Member 3 Email



In this study, I write about the emotional journey of high school athletic coaches’ experiences as they move through their day as teachers, coaches, and spouses/parents. The examination of the emotions and transitions high school coaches experience has been largely unresearched. There have been examinations of teachers, the impact coaches have on athletes, and a coach as a parent, but there is not extensive research on all three roles experienced by one person. High school athletics is a tremendous part of high school, and coaches have a tremendous impact not only on their players, but on the students they teach in the classroom as well. Coaches are often more visible and identifiable than the administration. As high school athletics continues to garner societal attention, it is imperative the motivations, emotions and conflicts coaches experience are examined within the three roles in order to understand how they handle this dynamic role transition. Using various frameworks and literature reviews, this study examines the emotions, transitions, motivations, and challenges high school athletic coaches experience. Three male coaches and their spouses were interviewed for this study. In addition, my own autobiographical stories and experiences are also weaved throughout each chapter. Some of the themes that emerged through the examination of each role include emotional regulation, learning through play, role conflict, workaholism, and work-family conflict. These themes indicate the role transitions high school athletic coaches experience are complicated and different for each coach.. The interviews also revealed the commitment to their role as a teacher, coach, and spouse are incredibly strong and without that commitment, they would not be able to continuously navigate the dynamic role transitions necessary to be a high school athletic coach. Many scholarly works were utilized throughout this research including Immanuel Kant (1908/2015), Nel Noddings (2002 and 2005), Sonya Nieto (2005), Jennifer Welborn (2005), Sam Intrator (2003), William Ayers (2010), and Erin Rooney (2015), Paul Wright and David Walsh (2015), Michael Coffino (2018), Michael Miragiuolo (2014), and Jeffery Graham and Marlene Dixon (2014).

OCLC Number


Research Data and Supplementary Material