Department of Psychology
Master of Arts
The present study was designed to gain a better understanding of why some people become sport fans and others do not. The study focused specifically on the differences in socialization experiences between people high and low in sport fandom and people high and low in team identification. Warm (2003) defines sport fandom as one's identification with his or her role as a sport fan. Wann (1997) states that team identification involves a person's psychological connection and attachment to a specific team. Understanding why people become sport fans can be of vital importance to sport marketers. Participants completed self-report measures of sport fandom (SFQ) and team identification (SSIS), as well as measures of socialization into sports and socialization with a specific team. It was hypothesized that participants who scored high on the SFQ would also score high on the sport socialization measure. It was also hypothesized that participants who scored high on the SSIS would tend to score high on the team socialization measure. Median splits were used to determine high and low groups for the SFQ and the SSIS. The scores from the socialization measures were submitted to a 2 (gender: male vs. female) x 2 (sport fandom: high vs. low) x 2 (team identification: high vs. low) Multivariate Analysis of Variance (MANOVA). Results indicated that both proposed hypotheses of the study were supported. Overall, participants who scored high on the sport fandom measure also scored high on the sport socialization measure. Likewise, the participants who scored high on the team identification measure also scored high on the team socialization measure. Therefore, it appears that the socialization experiences people receive are likely a determining factor in whether or not they become sport fans.
Frederiksen, Paul, "The Relationship Between Sport Fandom, Identification with a Specific Team, and an Individual's Socialization Experiences" (2003). Masters Theses & Specialist Projects. Paper 592.