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Karen L. Schmidt, Jessie M. Van Swearingen and Rachel M. Levenstein

The context of voluntary movement during facial assessment has significant effects on the activity of facial muscles. Using automated facial analysis, we found that healthy subjects instructed to blow produced lip movements that were longer in duration and larger in amplitude than when subjects were instructed to pucker. We also determined that lip movement for puckering expressions was more asymmetric than lip movement in blowing. Differences in characteristics of lip movement were noted using facial movement analysis and were associated with the context of the movement. The impact of the instructions given for voluntary movement on the characteristics of facial movement might have important implications for assessing the capabilities and deficits of movement control in individuals with facial movement disorders. If results generalize to the clinical context, assessment of generally focused voluntary facial expressions might inadequately demonstrate the full range of facial movement capability of an individual patient.

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Christina A. Taylor and Joonkoo Yun

This study examined the psychometric properties of the System for Observing Fitness Instruction Time (SOFIT) and the Children’s Activity Rating Scale (CARS) for use with children with mental retardation (MR). Eleven children with MR were videotaped while participating in a university-based community outreach program. Actiwatch accelerometers were used as the criterion measure. Results indicated that SOFIT and CARS both demonstrated adequate levels of generalizability (ϕ= 0.98 and 0.75), but a low concurrent validity coefficient for SOFIT (r = .10) and a moderate level of validity coefficient for CARS (r = .61) were observed. CARS demonstrates stronger validity evidence than SOFIT, but it is important to have sufficient rater training before using CARS for measuring physical activity level of children with MR.

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Michael B. Johnson, William A. Edmonds, Gershon Tenenbaum and Akihito Kamata

A recently introduced probabilistic methodology (Kamata, Tenenbaum, & Hanin, 2002) was implemented in the current study to ascertain the idiosyncratic Individual Affect-related Performance Zones (IAPZs) of four intercollegiate tennis players. The current study advances upon previous empirical works by its use of multiple performance levels, use of athletes’ introspective affective intensity, and recording multiple data points duringcompetition. Results present within- and between-player comparisons, and highlight the dynamic nature of competitive athletic events. A brief discussion regarding the implications of this methodology and the pursuant results for sport psychology consultants is also proffered. Being idiosyncratic in nature, the observations from this study are not intended to generalize across samples, but rather to introduce how knowledge of the systematic and dynamic linkage between an individual’s affect and his or her performance can be uncovered and possibly used with individual athletes to facilitate more consistently optimal performances.

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Roy J. Shephard

A quantitative hypothetico-deductive approach has continued to contribute greatly to advances in biological and medical science. Quantitative methods are adopted over other approaches primarily because they contribute the most new knowledge about biological processes. Nevertheless, investigators make many assumptions when testing a biological hypothesis quantitatively. These assumptions may become invalid unless experiments are designed with great care. Problems arise in relation to formulating appropriate hypotheses, using volunteer samples, controlling the experimental intervention and potentially interfering behaviors, reaching an acceptable level of proof, excluding alternative hypotheses, and generalizing findings beyond the immediate experimental sample. When biologists are aware of these issues, they can take appropriate countermeasures and reach valid conclusions. However, the issues become more critical and resolution is less clear-cut when the same methods are extended from biology to psychology and the social sciences, and from general to special populations. In such situations, case studies and single-subject designs may have continuing relevance.

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Maea Hohepa, Grant Schofield, Gregory S. Kolt, Robert Scragg and Nick Garrett

Background:

Few studies have examined high school students’ physical activity habits using objective measures. The purpose of this study was to describe pedometer-determined habitual physical activity levels of youth.

Methods:

236 high school students (age 12–18 years) wore sealed pedometers for 5 consecutive days. Data were analyzed using generalizing estimating equations.

Results:

Mean steps/d (± SE) differed significantly by sex (males, 10,849 ± 381; females, 9652 ± 289), age (junior students [years 9–11], 11,079 ± 330; senior students [years 12 and 13], 9422 ± 334), time of week (weekday, 12,259 ± 287; weekend day, 8241 ± 329), and mode of transportation to and from school (walkers, 13,308 ± 483; car transit users, 10,986 ± 435). Only 14.5% of students achieved at least 10,000 steps on every day during the monitoring period.

Conclusion:

Daily step counts differed substantially by age, sex, time of week, and transportation mode to school.

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Walter E. Davis, William A. Sparrow and Terry Ward

A fractionation technique was employed to determine the locus of reaction time delay in Down syndrome (DS) and other adult subjects with mental retardation (MH). Twenty-three subjects (8 nondisabled, 8 MH, and 7 DS) responded to a light, sound, and combination light/sound signal. Dependent measures of premotor time, motor time, total reaction time, and movement time were obtained during a 20° elbow extension movement and were analyzed separately. As expected, both MH and DS subjects were slower and more variable in their responses than the subjects without disabilities. In turn, DS subjects were significantly slower but not more variable than the MH subjects. There were no significant differences between the DS and MH subjects on movement times. Evidence for both a specific (premotor) and a generalized (both premotor and motor) locus of delay was found. Some difference in signal effect was also found for the DS subjects.

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Luke E. Kelly, James H. Rimmer and Richard A. Ness

The purpose of this investigation was to determine the percent body fat of 553 institutionalized mentally retarded adults, ages 18 to 40 yrs, from the Denton State School in Texas. The subjects included 343 males and 210 females. Their percent body fat was estimated with generalized regression equations. Body density for males was measured by the sum of three skinfolds, two girths, and age. Body density for females was measured by the sum of three skinfolds and age. The results from this study revealed that 45.2% of the males and 50.5% of the females were obese. The percent body fat of the female subjects was significantly greater than that of the male subjects. A post hoc analysis revealed that profoundly mentally retarded subjects had significantly lower percent body fat than those subjects functioning at the severe and mild levels. These findings indicate a serious need for more investigation of the caloric intake and expenditure of this population in an institutional environment.

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B. Ann Boyce

This study investigated the effect of three goal-setting conditions on skill acquisition and retention of a selected shooting task. Utilizing a two-stage random-sampling technique, nine classes (N=138 subjects) were assigned to one of three conditions: (a) assigned specific goals, (b) participant-set specific goals, and (c) generalized do-your-best goals. The pretest and five skill acquisition trials were analyzed in a 3×6 (Goal groups × Trials) MANOVA design with repeated measures on the last factor. The procedure for the retention trial resulted in a 3×1 (Goal groups × Trial) ANOVA design. Results indicated a significant groups-by-trials interaction. The follow-up analyses revealed that the two specific goal-setting groups (assigned and participant-set goals) were significantly superior to the do-your-best group during the second, fourth, fifth, and retention trials.

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Ron E. McBride

Six physical education specialists—two elementary, two junior high, and two high school (three males and three females)—were studied in an attempt to discern possible sex-role stereotyping in their classes. Data were triangulated from teacher observations, a sex-role inventory, and junior and senior high school student perceptions of teacher treatment in physical education classes. Results revealed that the female teachers used more managerial cues in their classes and called boys by name more frequently than did male teachers. Two male teachers were classified as being gender typed, but results from students of both sexes revealed no perceived differential treatment in class. From this teacher sample, the results suggest that perhaps the gymnasium is not quite the bastion of gender typing as is often assumed. Due to the small sample size, results were not generalized to a larger population and thus additional research is recommended.

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Christina Evaggelinou, Nikolaos Tsigilis and Areti Papa

This study was designed to examine the underlying structure of the Test of Gross Motor Development (TGMD) in Ulrich (1985). The TGMD was administered to 644 children who were randomly divided into two groups (calibration group and validation group). The calibration group (n = 324) included 150 boys and 174 girls, and the validation group included 160 boys and 160 girls, ranging from 3 to 10 years. A two-factor model was postulated and supported. According to the model, seven variables measuring children’s ability for moving into space loaded on one factor (locomotor skills), while five variables measuring children’s ability for controlling objects loaded on the other factor (object control skills). In addition, the proposed model was found to be invariant across the two groups. Good cross-generalizability of the TGMD appears to support its validity. Physical educators working with young children may use it with confidence when assessing and planning physical education programs involving locomotor and object control skills.