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Abstract

Self-perception is the level of competency at which individuals evaluate themselves in certain areas or domains (Marsh & Shavelson, 1985). An individual’s self-perceptions contribute to their global self-worth and even predicts performance (Cuellar, 2014; Harter & Neemann, 2012). This study measures self-perception scores, as well as experiences with racial discrimination, of 306 NCAA Division I college athletes using the Self-Perception Profile for College Students (Harter & Neemann, 2012). Scores are compared across race. Findings suggest that White college athletes have significantly higher self-perception scores than college athletes of color - with recent discrimination (within the last year) as a significant predictor of multiple areas of self-perception. The implications of this study suggest that faculty and other campus stakeholders should pursue positive relationships with the college athletes they encounter. Positive relationships between college athletes and faculty may help raise college athlete self-perceptions, and in turn, performance in a variety of areas.

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