This article describes comparative case studies of 2 of 12 veteran middle school physical education teachers participating in the Assessment Initiative for Middle School Physical Education (AIMS-PE), a reform-based teacher development project. The goals of the project were to help teachers examine and reframe their assessment practices and to design and implement curricular programs that encourage active teaching and learning. The following research questions guided this study: (a) What are the ways in which teachers changed their practices and/or beliefs concerning physical education teaching and assessment of student learning? and (b) what factors, both personal and institutional, influenced the level of changes (i.e., materials, teaching approaches, beliefs) experienced by each teacher? Three patterns of change were prominent in the teachers’ experiences: (1) increased planning and more efficient organization and management, (2) improved alignment of instruction processes and assessments, and (3) a shift in teacher roles characterized by the use of more indirect pedagogies to facilitate student-oriented small-sided games and student peer assessment. Even though these teachers made substantial changes, major shifts in assessment and instructional practices were not accomplished overnight. Changes required time, opportunity, and ongoing support.
Kevin Patton and Linda L. Griffin
The aim of this study was to explore preservice classroom teacher reflection in a physical education teaching and learning environment and to describe how the teachers’ reflections related to their practices. Two preservice classroom teachers voluntarily participated in the study. Data were collected using observations, journals, documents, and interviews and were analyzed inductively (Patton, 1990). Four major themes emerged from the data: (a) the role of reflection, (b) reflection in action and reflection on action, (c) agency for changes in teaching, and (d) nature and focus of reflection. Findings suggested that the two participants considered reflection a necessity in teaching. Student progress and learning was the most powerful agency for changes to the participants’ practices. Results also indicated that the participants’ reflections related to pedagogical, content, and social issues of teaching, as well as pedagogical content knowledge, and that the nature of their reflection was mostly positive across the lessons.
Suzan F. Ayers and Lynn D. Housner
The current study describes the nature of physical education teacher education (PETE) programs in the United States. Of the 200 institutions of higher education invited to participate, 116 PETE programs completed a comprehensive questionnaire regarding their undergraduate programs (58% response rate). Respondents reported employing an average of 3.84 (SD = 2.80) full-time and 3.07 (SD = 3.52) part-time faculty members, nearly equal in gender (females = 48%), and overly representative of Caucasians (92% of respondents reported employing a faculty of at least 60% Caucasian). First- and second-year field-based teaching experiences were provided by 77% of respondents. A majority (65.8%) of institutions provided student teaching experiences at the elementary and either middle or high school settings. These experiences typically lasted 9 weeks and were supervised by university personnel three times per setting, and 76.3% were conducted exclusively by PETE faculty. Emphasis on specific curricular models was reported by 83% of respondents, 45.3% reported electronic portfolio development as a primary technology experience, and 62% reported coursework as the primary means by which candidates received multicultural experiences.
Terry L. Rizzo and Walter P. Vispoel
This study was conducted to determine the influence of two physical education courses on undergraduate physical educators’ attitudes toward teaching students labeled educable mentally retarded, behavioral disordered, and learning disabled. The two courses, Adapted Physical Education and Physical Education for Children, included 77 and 97 students, respectively. Four strategies for attitudinal change (information, contact, persuasion, and vicarious experience) were emphasized in the former course. Participants in both courses completed the Physical Educators’ Attitude Toward Teaching the Handicapped Questionnaire (PEATH–II) during the first and last days of a 16-week semester. The data were analyzed using a split-plot hierarchical ANOVA design with two between-subjects factors, course type and teacher (nested under course type), and two within-subjects factors, time (pretest and posttest) and handicapping label. Results indicated that attitudes toward teaching students with handicaps improved significantly in the adapted physical education course but not in the other course.
Alexandre Mouton, Michel Hansenne, Romy Delcour and Marc Cloes
Research has documented a positive association between Emotional Intelligence (EI) and well-being, performance and self-efficacy. The purpose of the current study was to examine potential associations between EI and self-efficacy among physical education teachers. The Trait Emotional Intelligence Questionnaire (TEIQue) and the Teacher Sense of Efficacy Scale (TSES) were administered to a sample of 119 physical education teachers. The main results show a positive association between EI and self-efficacy, and more particularly that the sociability factor of EI predicted the TSES total score. Moreover, neither age nor teaching time experience was related to EI or self-efficacy scores. These results both confirm and extend previous findings on the association between EI and self-efficacy. Suggestions are provided for specific EI training for physical education teachers.
K. Andrew Richards and Thomas J. Templin
Using occupational socialization theory, this investigation describes the socialization of Janet, an induction phase physical education (PE) teacher. Special attention was given to the forms of induction assistance Janet was exposed to during her first two years at Liberty Middle School. Data were collected through seven interviews with Janet and interviews with Janet’s mentor, principal, and assistant superintendent. Analyses were conducted using inductive analysis and the constant comparative method. Results indicate that Janet was exposed to several forms of assistance including a state wide induction assistance initiative called the State Mentoring and Assessment Program (S-MAP). She found the informal assistance provided by her teaching colleague and the community of practice they formed to be among the most important elements of her induction, and she was critical of the formal support she received through the S-MAP.
Gunars Cazers and Matthew D. Curtner-Smith
The purpose was to construct the life history of Robin, an exemplary female physical educator, to hear her voice, and to explore ways in which she experienced marginalization. Few life histories of exemplary physical educators have been recounted.
Robin’s life history was investigated in light of the theory of occupational socialization (Lawson, 1983 a, b). Three semistructured interviews were conducted, and data were analyzed deductively according to categories in the occupational socialization literature.
The study found that Robin experienced marginalization based on gender, lack of support, and being unaccepted. Occupational socialization explained how Robin’s induction into teaching helped her both teach as she had been trained and to be innovative.
The study suggests ways in which Robin persevered in her career and gives suggestions based upon her story. The sharing of this story may serve to empower other teachers not just to survive, but to challenge the status quo in their professional life.
Emilio J. Martínez-López, Nestor Zamora-Aguilera, Alberto Grao-Cruces and Manuel J. De la Torre-Cruz
The aim of this study was to investigate the association between Spanish physical education teachers’ perceived self-efficacy toward including overweight and obese students and their attitudes toward overweight and obese students.
Four hundred and seventy-one physical education teachers filled out questionnaires to assess their self-efficacy expectations to meet overweight and obese students’ educational needs, and to identify physical education teachers’ beliefs and attitudes toward these students.
The physical education teachers with a higher perceived self-efficacy in fostering participation and in assessing and promoting overweight and obese students’ learning were more sensitive toward these students’ fitness and healthcare and showed less pejorative attitudes toward overweight and obesity.
These results highlight the need for teaching education programs capable of increasing the physical education teachers’ perceived self-efficacy in this area. The results also show that there is a need for training for teachers and students in strategies aimed at reducing the cases of victimization of overweight and obese students.
Ang Chen and Catherine D. Ennis
Research on physical educators’ value orientations has identified five orientations: disciplinary mastery, learning process, self-actualization, social responsibility, and ecological integration. An interpretive research design was used to compare the extent to which 2 physical education teachers’ content differed because of their value orientations. Findings revealed that the 2 teachers established curriculum goals and emphasized aspects of the physical education content that were associated with their individual value orientations. Dan, a learning-process-oriented teacher, stressed teaching students learning skills by breaking down movement skills into simple elements. John, a social-responsibility-oriented teacher, emphasized teaching social responsibility through physical activities. Both teachers viewed learning physical activities as a means to develop students’ analytic or social skills. However, philosophical differences were found in how curricular goals and content were determined. The findings suggest that clarifying teachers’ value orientations should be considered an appropriate initial step in curriculum innovation and change.
Dean Dudley, Victoria Goodyear and David Baxter
The United Nations Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization (UNESCO) recognizes quality physical education (QPE) must, along with physical, social and affective educative goals, seek to improve the health status of youth (UNESCO, 2015). Health-Optimizing Physical Education (HOPE) is a model of physical education (PE) that seeks this goal but is creating much debate in the discipline (Sallis et al., 2012).
The aim of this paper is to present a conceptual assessment framework for QPE and HOPE on which future assessment protocols may be based that serve both health and educative goals.
Policy and literature pertaining to QPE and HOPE were reviewed and compared for similarities and differences. This was followed by an analysis of literature on assessment in the health and education disciplines. These analyses provided the authors with the insight to propose a new model of assessment for HOPE models to implement QPE.
Many similarities exist in the policy of QPE and the published literature on HOPE. However, the measurement model of assessment can often circumvent two important assessment functions for education settings that need to be addressed in a wider QPE and Models-Based Practice (MBP) context. Conclusions: HOPE models were established using an interventionist mindset and are therefore well suited to integrating well-defined MBP pedagogies as appropriate ‘intervening’ strategies by using a clinical approach to teaching and assessment. To date, they have lacked an assessment framework that has been capable of addressing both the health and educative goals that both HOPE and MBP seek to achieve. This paper provides new insight by reimagining the role MBPs and assessment practices have to play in the health and education nexus.