Exercise Science (B.S.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Faculty Mentor

Dr. Daniel Czech


Motivational climate, along with other significant factors, play an instrumental role in the goal perspectives of athletes. Educating athletic professionals on these different motivational climates could potentially allow for the improvement of sport environments in which athletes thrive more desirably. In relation to different climates, when emphasis is placed on effort, improvement, cooperation, and self-referenced goals, a mastery climate develops. In contrast, when emphasis is placed on social comparison and winning competitions, then a performance climate develops (Cox, 2006). Gender is commonly cited throughout literature; however, many previous studies fail to consider race. The purpose of this exploratory study is to compare goal orientations among different races within a university setting. The design of this study was a quantitative, quasi-experimental, cross-sectional descriptive study. A 31-item researcher design questionnaire was distributed to current university students (n=1724) to measure physical activity, course satisfaction, and sport orientation. The data was gathered from students at a midsized southeastern university who are enrolled in physical activity classes. The survey contained demographic questions as well as the Sport Orientation Questionnaire, both of which were found to be reliable and valid measures. Instructors distributed bonus incentives to increase student participation. A one-way ANOVA determined significant differences in the demographic independent variables between races, and a Scheffe’s post hoc test was used to examine relationships. Results revealed significant disparities, specifically the Asian subgroup scoring lower on goal orientation than the all other racial classifications