Coach Learning and Coach Education: Portuguese Expert Coaches’ Perspective

in The Sport Psychologist

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Isabel MesquitaUniversity of Porto

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Joana RibeiroUniversity of Porto

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Sofia SantosCardiff Metropolitan University

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Kevin MorganCardiff Metropolitan University

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The aim of this study was to analyze Portuguese expert coaches’ conceptions of learning sources that promote long-term coach development and the extent to which these sources are currently present in coach education programs. Six expert coaches were individually interviewed, using a semistructured format and the interviews were analyzed using QSR N6 Nudist software. The results highlighted the participants’ awareness of the uniqueness of coach education, emphasizing the importance of reflecting and engaging with a variety of learning experiences. Findings also revealed dissatisfaction with the current dominant education framework in Portugal, which remains excessively didactic and classroom-orientated. In contrast, the participants externalized a constructivist approach for coach education assuming the need for theoretical knowledge to be framed in practical contexts, where they have the opportunity to share and reflect their own and others’ experiences to develop learning. Such a position echoes Sfard’s acquisition and participation learning metaphors.

Mesquita and Ribeiro are with the Centre of Research Education, Innovation and Intervention in Sport, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal. Santos and Morgan are with the Cardiff School of Sport, Cardiff Metropolitan University, Cardiff, UK.

Address author correspondence to Joana Ribeiro at joanaribeiro2001@hotmail.com.
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