Methods for the mental factor

In order to collect data, you must select an appropriate method. Below are some methods used to collect data on mental factors.

Sport Competition Anxiety Test (SCAT)

The SCAT is a questionnaire that gathers information on how well you control your anxiety levels during performance.

It contains 15 statements to which the response choice is:

  • rarely
  • sometimes
  • often

Each answer is given a score which you then add up at the end and compare to the norms.

It is a qualitative method as it requires you to provide your thoughts on how much you agree or disagree with a statement.

Despite receiving a figure at the end of the SCAT, it is a qualitative method because the score comes from your opinion about how well you control your anxiety in certain situations.

Below are the benefits and limitations of the SCAT.

BenefitsLimitations
Easy to complete so unlikely to make mistakes in a quick process.Qualitative method so you could lie to impress your coach and affect reliability of results.
Easy to understand statements so easy to answer correctly.You may have an inaccurate perception of yourself and accuracy of results can be questioned.
It is a permanent record which can be compared to in future re-tests.

Let's now deconstruct the SCAT and break it down into smaller parts. In doing this, we are:

  • identifying an important part in the process
  • then showing why this part is important in making the process work
  1. You must complete this method immediately after a big event. This is because the feelings you experienced will be fresh in your head and you will be able to answer accurately.
  2. You must complete this method on your own so you do not feel pressurised by anyone watching or judging you. You can therefore answer honestly.
  3. Finally, you should have a dictionary to hand just in case you misunderstand any key words. This will help you answer correctly as you will know exactly what is being asked.