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Online learning is changing the educational landscape despite the limited empirical research and conflicting results about its effectiveness to produce student learning. The purpose of this study was to describe the status of online physical education (OLPE) in the United States. Surveys were sent to forty-five high school online physical education teachers and thirty-two were completed, producing a 71% response rate. Three-fourths of the online physical education teachers focused on a fitness curriculum with emphasis on the cognitive domain. Likewise, it was found that almost three-fourths of the OLPE courses did not meet the national guidelines for secondary schools, of 225 min of PE per week. Most of the courses required physical activity three days per week while six courses required no physical activity. Teachers expressed support, hesitation, and even opposition toward online physical education. This study initiates a descriptive database for future research studies regarding online physical education.
Daum is with the Kinesiology Department, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, IL. Buschner is with the Kinesiology Department, California State University at Chico, Chico, CA.