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Physical Education Alternative Certification Programs: Learning Opportunities for Teacher Candidates

Jaehun Jung, Layne Case, Samuel W. Logan, and Joonkoo Yun

Purpose: This study investigated differences in (a) completion of teaching methods courses and (b) participation in professional development opportunities between alternatively and traditionally certified physical educators. Method: The sample included 1,850 physical educators (mean age: 42.7 years, male: 61.7%, female: 38.3%) from the 2017 to 2018 National Teacher and Principal Survey. Prevalence estimates of physical educators who (a) completed undergraduate or graduate teaching methods courses during their education and training and (b) participated in professional development were calculated. Results: The results of binary logistic regressions reveal that alternatively certified physical educators were less likely to complete various teaching methods courses before entering the teaching profession. In addition, there were no differences in participation in professional development except in instructional strategies for students with disabilities. Conclusion: Considering unprepared teachers tend to leave the profession early, alternative certification programs need to provide substantial levels of learning opportunities, including teaching methods courses.

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Meta-Analysis of Physical Activity Levels in Youth With and Without Disabilities

Jaehun Jung, Willie Leung, Bridgette Marie Schram, and Joonkoo Yun

The purpose of this study was to explore the current levels of physical activity among youth with disabilities using meta-analysis. The search identified 11 publications including 729 participants (age 4–20 yr). The overall effect size for 11 studies was Hedges g = 0.60 (SE = 0.18, 95% confidence interval [CI] [0.24, 0.96], p < .05, k = 11) using a random-effects model. The findings suggest that differences in physical activity levels between youth with and without disabilities are complex. Results indicated that youth without disabilities engaged in higher levels of physical activity of moderate to vigorous intensity (g = 0.66, SE = 0.18, p < .05). However, no differences were found in light-intensity physical activity (g = −0.03, SE = 0.16, p > .85). Results also suggested that the differences in physical activity between youth with and without disabilities were affected by age (<12 yr, g = 0.83, SE = 0.24, 95% CI [0.37, 1.29], p < .05, and >13 yr, g = 0.37, SE = 0.10, 95% CI [0.18, 0.57], p < .05; Q value = 3.20, df = 1, p < .05), with children with disabilities engaging in less physical activity than children without disabilities in younger ages. Differences in physical activity level between youth with and without disabilities are functions of intensity of physical activity and age but may not be of type of disability (Q value = 0.22, df = 1, p > .6).

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Physical Educators’ Qualifications and Instructional Practices Toward Students With Disabilities

Jaehun Jung, Layne Case, Samuel W. Logan, and Joonkoo Yun

The purposes of this study were (a) to investigate the prevalence of physical educators who report delivering high-quality instructional practices to students with disabilities and (b) to examine the relationships between teachers’ qualifications and the delivery of high-quality instructional practices. A secondary analysis using data from the School Health Policy and Practice Study 2014 data set was employed. The analytic sample included 256 physical educators who taught students with disabilities. Prevalence estimates of physical educators who reported using high-quality instructional practices were calculated. Two separate binary logistic regressions using weighted data were conducted to evaluate the relative contribution of (a) teacher qualifications and (b) educational degrees in accounting for differences in the use of high-quality instructional practices. Less than half of the sample reported using high-quality instructional practices. Considering the increasing prevalence of students with disabilities in general education classrooms, teacher education programs should prioritize providing teacher candidates with coursework that aligns with the expectations of physical educators who teach students with disabilities.