University sports administrators’ perceptions on campus recreation services for students with physical disabilities

  • Nadia N. Mgulwa
  • Marié E. M. Young


Tertiary institutions experience increased enrolment of students with physical disabilities, yet inclusion of these students in campus activities remains problematic. The introduction of strategically managed campus recreation programmes would eliminate some of the barriers for students with disabilities, creating a climate of campus community. Little research has been conducted on this topic at South African universities. This study, therefore, explored the perceptions of sports administrators at Western Cape tertiary institution on the provision of campus recreation services to students with physical disabilities. A qualitative approach was followed and five sports administrators were interviewed. A thematic approach was used to analyse data through the lens of the campus culture of compassion theoretical framework. Findings indicated that students with physical disabilities did not have access to recreational services on campus. Reasons included poor financial support and a lack of administrators’ skills and interest to conform to their social responsibility by providing these activities. The institution strategically and financially supports mainly the academic development of students. It is recommended that the institution revise their vision supporting sports administrators to develop a sustainable inclusive campus recreation plan.


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