Search tips
Search criteria 


Logo of jathtrainLink to Publisher's site
J Athl Train. 1999 Jan-Mar; 34(1): 48–52.
PMCID: PMC1322874

Athletic Training Education Programs: To Rank or Not To Rank?

Craig A. Voll, Jr, MS, ATC,* Jeff E. Goodwin, PhD, and William A. Pitney, MS, ATC



To discuss the literature regarding educational program ranking and to provide insights concerning undergraduate and graduate athletic training education ranking systems.


The demand for accountability and the need to evaluate the quality of educational programs have led to program ranking in many academic disciplines. As athletic training becomes more recognized within the medical community, determining a program's quality will become increasingly important.


We describe program rankings used in other disciplines for determining quality and providing measures of accountability. We discuss the strengths and weaknesses of both subjective and objective ranking systems, as well as the arguments for using program rankings in athletic training. Future directions for program ranking and potential research questions are suggested.


Ranking systems on the basis of levels of perceived quality and academic productivity of programs that prepare future professionals will help potential undergraduate and graduate students make informed decisions when selecting an educational program.

Full text

Full text is available as a scanned copy of the original print version. Get a printable copy (PDF file) of the complete article (978K), or click on a page image below to browse page by page. Links to PubMed are also available for Selected References.

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Hartnett RT, Clark MJ, Baird LL. Reputational ratings of doctoral programs. Science. 1978 Mar 24;199(4335):1310–1314. [PubMed]
  • Garfunkel JM, Ulshen MH, Hamrick HJ, Lawson EE. Effect of institutional prestige on reviewers' recommendations and editorial decisions. JAMA. 1994 Jul 13;272(2):137–138. [PubMed]
  • Crane D. Scientists at major and minor universities: a study of productivity and recognition. Am Sociol Rev. 1965 Oct;30(5):699–714. [PubMed]
  • Duncan KM, Wright KE. A national survey of athletic trainer roles and responsibilities in the allied clinical setting. J Athl Train. 1992;27(4):311–316. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Articles from Journal of Athletic Training are provided here courtesy of National Athletic Trainers Association