Statement of the Problem
The problem to be addressed by this study is NCAA athletic administrators do not understand the three-prong test for Title IX compliance and incorrectly rely on proportionality as the only means to satisfy Title IX compliance (Hazelbaker & Martin, 2018; Staurowsky et al. 2017; Yiamouyiannis & Hawes, 2015). The inaccurate reliance, solely on proportionality, creates missed opportunities to satisfy Title IX law by adding varsity sports to an NCAA athletic department’s offering (Yiamouyiannis & Hawes, 2015). Equally important, only 18% of NCAA athletic administrators report having any formal Title IX education while training to fulfill their athletic department duties (Staurowsky, 2011). Many NCAA athletic department personnel are unaware of the three prongs of the Title IX three-prong test, which specifies the three options, that can be satisfied, for college athletic departments to be Title IX compliant (Yiamouyiannis &
Hawes, 2015). Supporters of Title IX suggest that it has increased female athletic participation exponentially over the last 40 years (Hazelbaker & Martin, 2018), while opponents have stated that Title IX law has caused a severe reduction in male athletic opportunities on NCAA college campuses over that same period of time (Paule-Kobe et al., 2013). The confusion adds to the misunderstanding of Title IX and enhances the discussions, amongst NCAA athletic department personnel, when trying to interpret the satisfaction of Title IX’s three-prong test for compliance. Staurowsky et al. (2017) reported that 83% of all NCAA head and assistant coaches have never been taught about Title IX and these same coaches stated that they gained most of their Title IX understanding from mainstream media sources and NCAA News publications. Also, less than 20% of college coaches have reported participation in any type of Title IX education class or department-led workshops on compliance (Staurowsky et al., 2017).