The Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women
was founded in 1971 to govern collegiate women’s athletics and to administer national championships
. During its existence, the AIAW and its predecessor, the Division for Girls' and Women's Sports (DGWS), recognized via these championships the teams and individuals who excelled at the highest level of women's collegiate competition.
After the 1981-82 academic year, the AIAW discontinued sponsorship of national championships and later was legally dissolved. At this time, the NCAA assumed sole sanctioning authority of its member schools' women's sports programs. Compilations of collegiate records by the NCAA, continuing into 2006, have ignored or segregated the contributions of AIAW athletes. Major college basketball's career women's scoring leader, Lynette Woodard of the University of Kansas, speaking on the exclusion of AIAW statistics, said, "Basketball doesn't just start with when the NCAA blessed it. And it's not about Jackie [Stiles, NCAA career scoring leader] and it's not about Lynette. It's about history. History is history."
Championships of the AIAW and affiliated/contemporary governing bodies of women's collegiate athletics through 1982
AIAW championship from 1973-82. Previously administered by the Division of Girls' and Women's Sports (DGWS).
- The Division of Girls and Women's Sports (DGWS), a division of the American Alliance for Health, Physical Education and Recreation (AAHPER), was the first nationally recognized collegiate organization for women’s athletics and the forerunner of the AIAW.
- The Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (CIAW) operated under the auspices of the DGWS. The CIAW governed from 1966-72 and conducted championships in seven sports.
- During the 1972-73 season, its first year of actual operation, the AIAW offered its first seven national championships in the same seven sports (badminton, basketball, golf, gymnastics, swimming & diving, track & field, and volleyball).
- In years when small-college championships (Division II or III) were not contested, and in sports without divisions, there was open competition among eligible teams.
- Except as noted, the NCAA sponsored its first women's championship in each sport in the 1981-82 academic year. Individual athletic programs and, in some cases, individual teams within a program were permitted to choose the organization in which they participated. The NCAA has never sponsored championship competition in badminton, synchronized swimming, or slow-pitch softball.
After the last AIAW competition, collegiate badminton assumed the authority of its own national tournament committee in conjunction with the United States Badminton Association. The USBA continued the sponsorship of national collegiate championships from 1983 - ?. Arizona State won all ten titles from 1984 through 1993, when ASU dropped badminton.
AIAW championship from 1973-82. Previously administered by the Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (CIAW).
Non-AIAW: National Collegiate Championships were administered from inception in 1975 by the ABC/Women’s International Bowling Congress (now the US Bowling Congress)
From 2004 through the present (2007) the NCAA has sponsored a women's team championship.
Only AIAW championship was in 1982. The National Women's Rowing Association (NWRA) sponsored an annual open eights national championship from 1971-1979, among college and non-college teams. (There were no eights prior to 1971.) During this period, only in 1973 and 1975 did a college team win the national eights championship outright. According to USRowing, contemporary news reports in 1976 and 1977 do not mention a national collegiate title. Beginning in 1980, the NWRA sponsored the Women's Collegiate National Championship in varsity eights.
NWRA Open Eights top college finishers, 1971-1979 (champion in parentheses):
National Collegiate Varsity Eight Champions, 1980-1982:
1982 Varsity 8 Washington
1982 Varsity 4 Pennsylvania
1982 Lightweight 8 Harvard
1982 Lightweight 4 Minnesota
1982 Novice 8 Boston University
1982 Novice 4 Minnesota
1982 2nd Varsity 8 Washington
- A medalist in the 1975 NWRA regatta stated that the 1975 regatta was the 10th annual national women's rowing championship, as emblazoned on t-shirts from the event.
- One citation from 1996 states, "(The Cal Women's Crew) in 1979 finished second in the U.S. National Collegiate Championships. ... The 1980 Cal Women's Crew dominated the National Championships, ... They won the varsity eight, Cal's first ever varsity national championship in any women's sport."
- One citation from 1999 states, "1980. First Women’s Collegiate Rowing Championship held in Oak Ridge, TN."
- One citation from 2001 states, " Just seven years after its first race, the (Yale) women's team claimed its first national championship in 1979."
- After the last AIAW competition, the National Collegiate Rowing Championship was held from 1983 through 1996. Washington won the varsity eight in 1983, 1984, 1985, 1987, and 1988. Wisconsin won in 1986. Cornell won in 1989. Cornell Novice 8 won in 1990. Princeton won in 1990, 1993, 1994 and 1995. Boston University won in 1991 and 1992. Brown won in 1996.
- From 1997 through the present (2007) the NCAA has sponsored the women's collegiate rowing championship.
AIAW championship from 1980-82. Previously administered by the National Intercollegiate Women's Fencing Association. The IWFA became the National IWFA in 1964 and called for a National Championship.
The NIWFA has continued to sponsor national collegiate championships from 1983 through the present (2007). From 1990 through the present (2007) the NCAA has sponsored a combined men's and women's team championship.
Co-sponsored from 1975-78 by the United States Field Hockey Association (USFHA).
Prior to the era of the CIAW/AIAW, the DGWS also crowned an individual collegiate golf national champion from 1941-1965.
- 1966 Joyce Kazmierski, Michigan State University (DGWS)
- 1967 Martha Wilkinson, Cal State-Fullerton (DGWS)
- 1968 Gail Sykes, Odessa College (Texas) (DGWS)
- 1969 Jane Bastanchury, Arizona State University (DGWS)
- 1970 Cathy Vaughan, Arizona State University (DGWS)
- 1971 Shelly Hamlin, Stanford University (DGWS)
- 1972 Ann Laughlin, University of Miami (DGWS)
- 1973 Bonnie Lauer, Michigan State University
- 1974 Mary Budke, Oregon State University
- 1975 Barbara Barrow, San Diego State University and Deborah Simocerian, Wheaton College (Massachusetts)
- 1976 Nancy Lopez, University of Tulsa
- 1977 Cathy Morse, University of Miami
- 1978 Debbie Petrizzi, University of Texas
- 1979 Kyle O'Brien, Southern Methodist University
- 1980 Patty Sheehan, San Jose State
- 1981 Terri Moody, University of Georgia
- 1982 Kathy Baker, University of Tulsa
AIAW championship from 1981-82. Administered from 1978-80 by the United States Women's Lacrosse Association (USWLA)
From 1983 through the present (2007) the NCAA has sponsored a combined men's and women's team championship.
From Fall 1982 through the present the NCAA has sponsored a women's championship.
AIAW championship from 1974-82. Previously administered by the Amateur Softball Association (?) from ? - 1973. Co-sponsored by the AIAW and ASA through 1979.
After the last AIAW competition, a collegiate national championship in slow-pitch softball was held in 1983 (sponsor?). The University of South Florida won. It appears that most of the college women's slow-pitch teams at that time were from Florida and North Carolina.
United States Synchronized Swimming has continued to sponsor national collegiate championships from 1983 through the present (2008). From 1983 through 2004, Ohio State won 19 of the 22 titles. Arizona won in 1984. Stanford won in 1998, 1999, 2005, 2006 and 2007. Ohio State won in 2008.
AIAW championship from 1977-82. Administered from 1968-76 by the United States Tennis Association (USTA)
From 1983 through the present (2007) the NCAA has sponsored a women's team championship.
AIAW championship from 1973-82. The first National Intercollegiate Track and Field Championship was sponsored by DGWS in the spring of 1969.
AIAW championship from 1973-82. Previously administered by the Division of Girls' and Women's Sports (DGWS).
"Woodard wants place in college record book(,) NCAA doesn't recognize AIAW accomplishments," Andrew Hartsock, Lawrence Journal-World, March 3, 2001 (KUsports.com
 Official 2007 NCAA Women’s Basketball Records Book, Jennifer Blomenberg (ed.), National Collegiate Athletic Association, November, 2006, p 18 (NCAA.org) (pdf - large)
 2005 Women's Outdoor Track and Field Championships Records, National Collegiate Athletic Association, 2005 (NCAA.org) (pdf)
- Archives of the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries
- Virginia Hunt, "Governance of Women's Intercollegiate Athletics: an Historical Perspective," (Doctoral Dissertation, University of North Carolina - Greensboro, 1976), Ann Arbor, Michigan: University Microfilms (1977), 1-319
- Suzanne Willey, "The Governance of Women's Intercollegiate Athletics: Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW), 1976-1982," (Thesis (P.E.D.), Indiana University, 1996), Eugene, Oregon: Microform Publications (1997), 1-351
- USA Field Hockey
- Women's Basketball Timeline 1890’s-Present (pdf)
- Women's College Basketball Championship History Page
- USBC, Intercollegiate Team Championships
- NIFWA Team Champions
- Intercollegiate Tennis Association - The Milestones in Women's Collegiate Tennis
- The History of UCLA Women's Volleyball
- UW Women's Sports History, 1974-2004 (pdf-large)
- Trinity University Campus Spotlight, "Former Sports Standouts to be Inducted Into Trinity’s Athletic Hall of Fame"
- Long Beach Press-Telegram,"It All Started in Long Beach," 12/15/2004
- Bio: Marilyn Nolen: Women's Volleyball
- Cougar Volleyball 99 (pdf-large)
- McPherson College Hall of Fame 2004, Kathy Rogers Yoder
- BRO Forums, "UCLA: 97 NCAA titles and counting...." (Caution: before referencing, confirm a second source)
- TWU Athletics Hall Of Fame Committee Seeks Nominations For 2006 Induction
- Texas Woman's University Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2002
- "The Institutionalization of a Gender Biased Sport Value System," Everhart & Pemberton, Winter, 2001
- Northern Illinois University Athletics Hall of Fame
- History of Synchronized Swimming in the U.S.
- Buckeye Champions
- SMS softball recognizes 1974 national championship team 30th anniversary
- 2005 Sacramento State Hornets Softball Media Guide (pdf-large)
- “10 Most Memorable Moments in UNO Sports History”
- USTA supporting women’s collegiate tennis for nearly half a century
- Alabama Women's Golf 2003-04, page 7 (pdf-large)
- "Nearly 150 years old, Yale crew embodies spirit of Eli sports," May 17, 2001
- California Golden Bears Women's Crew
- “A rowing legend moves on,” April 15, 1998
- "Proposal To Add Women’s Rowing As A Varsity Sport, University Of Colorado, Boulder"
- UCLA Bruins Traditions
- Rowing (From Alexander Leitch, A Princeton Companion, copyright Princeton University Press (1978))
- Private email from USRowing Communications Director, January 10, 2006, Indianapolis, Indiana
- Men's & Women's Skiing Past Individual Champions
- Men's & Women's Fencing Past Champions
- "Stanford’s Inferno Too Hot for Bucks"
- Women's Bowling Past Champions
- Women's Soccer Past Champions
- Men's & Women's Track & Field Indoor Champions
- Seminole Softball 2004 Media Guide, p 66 (pdf-large)
- National Fastpitch Coaches Association
- Wisconsin Women's Rowing 2005-2006 Media Guide - History and Results (pdf)
- Princeton Women's Rowing Record Book (pdf)
- The History of ASU Badminton (pdf)
- Sun Devil Swimming & Diving Program History
- Cornell Big Red - On Campus in the Nineties