Electronic Thesis and Dissertation Repository


Master of Arts




Dr. Karen Danylchuk


The purpose of this study was to investigate the landscape of international student-athletes participating in Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) with respect to number, sport, and gender breakdown, and to determine the motivations of these athletes for migrating to a Canadian academic institution as well as their experiences. Of the over 10,000 CIS student-athletes, approximately 5% are international student-athletes. In addition, the sports with the highest number of international student-athletes were soccer and basketball for males, and basketball and soccer for females. Semi-structured interviews with 16 international student-athletes from the four regional associations determined that the majority of participants were motivated to attend a Canadian university for the opportunity to combine academics and athletics. This study may benefit university institutions, their athletics programs, as well as the CIS by providing knowledge of the motives of international student-athletes as well as ways to enrich the international student-athlete experience.