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Richard Tinning

Pedagogy is a major concern of teacher education. Within this paper three pedagogies are discussed: performance pedagogy, critical pedagogy, and postmodern pedagogy. The case is made that in order to understand which particular pedagogies are privileged within physical education teacher education, it is useful to analyze the discourses on which they are based and the process of problem setting, which acts to define or set certain problems that require certain solutions. The problems that dominate the physical education profession tend to be those that address technical or instrumental issues, which in turn privilege performance pedagogy as the appropriate solution. The political processes involved in such problem setting are discussed with reference to dominant discourses and the nature of contemporary professional practice. It is argued that privileging performance pedagogy in teacher education is limited in vision and continues to produce physical education teachers who conceive of teaching as essentially a technical matter with little sense of the social, moral, and political aspects of their work.

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Doune Macdonald and Richard Tinning

Drawing on evidence from an Australian physical education teacher education (PETE) program, this paper argues that the preparation of physical education teachers implicates PETE in the trend to proletarianize teachers’ work at the same time that national claims for increased professionalization are being made. The core physical education program and its PETE component was characterized by narrow utilitarian, sexist, scientistic, and technicist approaches to the field of physical education. More specifically, the PETE program represented teaching as technical and unproblematic rather than as a critical and intellectual endeavor, and its faculty and students were accorded a subordinate status within the department.

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Richard I. Tinning

Student teaching as a significant part of the professional development of physical education teachers is implicated in the general failure of teacher education to adequately prepare teachers who can envision a world of schooling that is any different from the present one. This paper argues that the dominant pedagogy of student teaching is inherently conservative, is characterized by technical rationality, and embraces an outmoded view of professional knowledge. The adoption of a critical-inquiry perspective in student teaching is offered as a possible alternative.

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Richard Tinning and Daryl Siedentop

Doyle’s concepts of task structures and the notion of accountability were applied to the student teaching process. Qualitative research strategies were used to gather data for one intern in two settings across an entire academic term. Three main task systems were identified. The contingencies supporting the task structures were less readily identified than for previous classroom and gymnasium research. Accountability systems tended to be less formal. The intern must balance the demands of task systems that produce consequences from pupils, the cooperating teacher, and the university supervisor. Monitoring and feedback from the supervisor and cooperating teacher appear to play an important informal role in the development of intern performance across time.

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Natalie Barker-Ruchti and Richard Tinning

Women’s artistic gymnastics is an Olympic sport that involves intricate acrobatic and rhythmic activities. This kinesthetic proficiency demands muscular strength and courage, which have been argued to serve its athletes as a source of empowerment.

Various scholars question the positive effects of sport participation. This article builds on these doubts through a feminist Foucauldian study of WAG. An essayistic research story, compiled from data gained in an ethnographic study, serves as the basis for our analyses. The results demonstrate the complexity of WAG experiences and illustrate that gymnasts’ athletic proficiency is only possible through an extensive and elaborate process of corporeal discipline.

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Tony Rossi, Richard Tinning, Louise McCuaig, Karen Sirna, and Lisa Hunter

Much of physical education curriculum in the developed world and specifically in Australia tends to be guided in principle by syllabus documents that represent, in varying degrees, some form of government education priorities. Through the use of critical discourse analysis we analyze one such syllabus example (an official syllabus document of one of the Australian States) to explore the relationships between the emancipatory/social justice expectations presented in the rubric of and introduction to the official syllabus document, and the language details of learning outcomes that indicate how the expectations might be satisfied. Given the complexity and multilevel pathways of message systems/ideologies we question the efficacy of such documents oriented around social justice principles to genuinely deliver more radical agendas which promote social change and encourage a preparedness to engage in social action leading to a betterment of society.