The preceding chapters of this monograph have served to situate the study of physical education teacher education recruitment and retention within relevant literature and theory. This chapter outlines the sequential explanatory design methods, whereby participants in an online survey were selected using stratified random sampling to participate in follow-up interviews. The chapter opens with an overview of participant identification and recruitment. Participants were program coordinators drawn from a database that included contact information for physical education teacher education faculty members working at colleges and universities across the United States. Next, the participants in the quantitative and qualitative elements of the study are described, with attention to both individual and institutional factors. Survey design and content validity are discussed, as well as the development of a qualitative interview guide. The chapter concludes with a discussion of quantitative and qualitative data analysis strategies used to support the results presented in the subsequent chapters.
K. Andrew R. Richards, Chad M. Killian, Kim C. Graber and Ben D. Kern
Ben D. Kern, K. Andrew R. Richards, Suzan F. Ayers and Chad M. Killian
Background/Purpose: Physical education teacher education (PETE) programs have experienced enrollment decline, leading some PETE faculty to consider increasing efforts to recruit new students to their programs. This aspect of the current study sought to investigate PETE program coordinators’ perceptions of possible causes for decreased PETE enrollments as well as their role in, and barriers to, recruiting preservice teachers. Methods: Thirty-six PETE program coordinators (12 males and 24 females) participated in in-depth interviews. The data were coded using a standard interpretative approach grounded in inductive analysis and constant comparison. Results: PETE faculty members perceived declining enrollments to be related to negative public perceptions of education, low-quality K-12 physical education, academically unprepared PETE students, and restructuring programs to emphasize other kinesiology areas. Though compelled to recruit, PETE coordinators questioned their responsibility to do so and reported lacking time and training to be effective. Discussion/Conclusions: PETE coordinators favor recruiting strategies that are less time-intensive and match their academic skill set.
Ben D. Kern, Suzan F. Ayers, Chad M. Killian and Amelia Mays Woods
Background/Purpose: Student retention in physical education teacher education (PETE) programs is critical to promoting high-quality physical education in schools. This aspect of the current study was to investigate PETE program coordinators’ perceptions of their role in the process of retaining students within their programs. Method: Thirty-six PETE program coordinators (12 males and 24 females) completed in-depth interviews. The data were analyzed using a standard interpretative approach grounded in inductive analysis and constant comparison. Results: The PETE coordinators in this study perceived retention to be: (a) aligned with core job expectations, (b) grounded in relationships, (c) impacted by external and policy factors, and (d) limited by time and resources. Discussion/Conclusion: Retention in PETE is supported when faculty members utilize constructivist learning pedagogies and develop a sense of belonging among PETE students. Retention issues may be addressed through involvement with state policymakers and professional organizations.
Ben D. Kern, Kim C. Graber, Amelia Mays Woods and Tom Templin
Physical education teachers have been criticized for not implementing progressive or innovative instruction resulting in enhanced student knowledge and skills for lifetime participation in physical activity. Purpose: To investigate how teachers with varying dispositions toward change perceive socializing agents and teaching context as barriers to or facilitators of making pedagogical change. Methods: Thirty-two teachers completed a survey of personal dispositions toward change and participated in in-depth interviews. Results: Teachers perceived that students’ response to instructional methods and student contact time (days/week), as well as interactions with teaching colleagues and administrators influenced their ability to make pedagogical changes. Teachers with limited student contact time reported scheduling as a barrier to change, whereas daily student contact was a facilitator. Change-disposed teachers were more likely to promote student learning and assume leadership roles. Conclusion: Reform efforts should include consideration of teacher dispositions and student contact time.