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Open access

Rachael Bertram and Wade Gilbert

Continuing professional development (CPD) for sport coaches has been defined as all kinds of professional learning that occurs after initial certification (Nelson et al., 2006), and includes both non-formal and informal learning situations. Despite the fact that within the past decade there has been an increasing number of studies on these learning situations, learning communities as a type of CPD have received little attention. Therefore, the purpose of this paper is to share initial observations and lessons learned from creating and implementing sport coach learning communities. In addition, this paper extends the dialogue on learning community implementation and assessment. Our learning community efforts were formulated around five key guidelines: (1) Stable settings dedicated to improving instruction and learning, (2) Job-alike teams, (3) Published protocols that guide but do not prescribe, (4) Trained peer facilitators, and (5) Working on student learning goals until there are tangible gains in student learning.

Open access

Katherine E. Hirsch, Todd M. Loughead, Gordon A. Bloom, and Wade D. Gilbert

The purpose of this commentary is to provide a broad overview of the empirical research-based articles published in the International Sport Coaching Journal from its inception in 2014 through 2020. Data from 101 publications were collected and analyzed using Arksey and O’Malley’s six-stage framework for conducting scoping reviews. Data were extracted on the size and scope of research, populations and perspectives studied, and methodologies and data collection methods used. The results show that empirical research publications grew more prominent over time (i.e., 24.0% of 2014 publications vs. 58.1% of 2020 publications) compared with other publication types. The most commonly researched topics included coach development and coach behaviors. The participants most studied were male coaches, performance sport coaches, and adult sport coaches, featuring primarily European and North American coaches. The majority of studies used a qualitative methodology with the most common research designs being phenomenological and case studies. A variety of data collection methods were used that involved one-on-one interviews and questionnaires. Several recommendations are advanced to stakeholders, including strategies to promote racial and gender diversity and to collect and report demographic data on race and coaching experience.