Girls Opting in to Senior Elective Physical Education

in Women in Sport and Physical Activity Journal

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Sandra L. GibbonsUniversity of Victoria

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Viviene A. TempleUniversity of Victoria

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Louise HumbertUniversity of Saskatchewan

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It is well documented that many young women become discontented with physical education in their high school years. The purpose of this investigation was to gain insight into the characteristics of nine senior elective physical education courses that were specifically designed to accommodate the needs and interests of female students. Data collection methods included focus group interviews with students; individual interviews with teachers; and analysis of course documents. The following themes are presented: (a) choice in what to learn and how to learn it; (b) all-female learning environment; (c) lifetime physical activities; (d) personalized assessment; and (e) responsive and flexible planning. Findings offer considerations for the development of physical education curricula that will gain and hold the interest of female high school students.

Gibbons and Temple are with the School of Exercise Science, Physical, & Health Education, University of Victoria, Victoria, BC, Canada. Humbert is with the College of Kinesiology, University of Saskatchewan, Saskatoon, SK, Canada.

Address author correspondence to Sandra Gibbons at sgibbons@uvic.ca.
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