Adolescent females' self-concept and physical education : a Q-sort analysis /
Swain, Janet L.
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This research illuminates the relationship between female adolescents' self-concept and their experience of physical education. This was accomplished through three stages of interviews and a Qsort. The topics through which the research was categorized included peer support, teachers as significant others, meaningful connections to the body, and curriculum content. During stage one female physical education specialists, curriculum coordinators, and adolescents were interviewed to develop Q-items for the Q-sort. The second stage Involved two groups of females between the ages of 12 and 14 years who participated in the Q-sort. The final stage involved an insight group that consisted of four Q-sort participants who interpreted the highest ranking Q-items. Critical to this research was giving these adolescents the opportunity to voice what was important to them. The results of the research included descriptions of the elements in physical education that were deemed most important by female adolescent students. The topics of "peer support" and "meaningful connections to the body" were ranked the highest. By interpreting the rich insights of the discussion group, it was found that peers were most influential to these young girls. Perceiving and bestowing respect were imperative in this stage of their lives.