Date of Graduation

Fall 2020


Master of Science in Applied Behavior Analysis



Committee Chair

Jordan Belisle


Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA) and sports performance has been a topic of research since as early as the 1960s. ABA principles and interventions have been used all over in sports from enhancing athlete performance on the field, court, or course, sportsmanlike behaviors off the field, court, or course, and even looking into coaching behaviors. The purpose of this paper is twofold; to assess and analyze the current research for applied behavior analysis and sports and to use what literature is already established and systematically set the framework for future avenues of research and support a strong insert of applied behavior analysis into the world of sports as a whole. Eight sports, “sports performance” being used as an umbrella search, and 11 behavior analytic procedures were chosen to narrow down searches for applied behavior analysis and sports performance. The two databases used to identify articles were GoogleScholar and PYSCinfo. I identified 22 articles that met the inclusion criteria. With the specific sports and sports performance as an umbrella search term, 10 sports were included as well as 11 behavior analytic procedures, though two were different from the original 11 used to narrow the searches. In addition, 40 target behaviors were identified in the 22 articles included. The Seven Dimensions were also assessed within the 22 included articles. The applied, behavioral, analytic, and conceptual systems dimensions were met in all 22 articles. Only three articles did not meet the full criteria for effective. Generality was only provided or sought in eight of the 22 included articles, and there was only one article that did not meet the technological criteria. Future research in this area will be discussed.


applied behavior analysis, sports performance, improved performance, performance enhancement, Seven Dimensions of Applied Behavior Analysis

Subject Categories

Applied Behavior Analysis


© Molly Patrice Fields

Open Access