• A Case Study of Disengaged Students' Experiences with Teaching Games for Understanding

      Bracco, Elizabeth Marie; Applied Health Sciences Program
      The purpose of this research study was to determine if the instructional model, Teaching Games for Understanding (TGfU), would allow for the successful teaching of sport to disengaged female students in Physical Education (PE) classes. An instrumental case study research design was used to determine grade nine female students’ experiences with TGfU, the factors of TGfU that facilitated their engagement, and the ways in which these students resisted engaging in TGfU. Data was collected through a pre and post TGfU unit focus group, participant observation, in-depth interviews, and researcher reflections. Results showed that TGfU caused an increase in the participants’ engagement in PE physically, mentally, and socially/emotionally. Future researchers could structure their entire study holistically and should examine TGfU’s impact on student engagement over the course of an entire semester. Subsequent studies should moreover examine the presence of disengagement within physically skilled students in PE.
    • The Future of Physical Education in Higher Education: A Delphi Investigation

      Lorusso, Jenna R.; Applied Health Sciences Program (Brock University, 2013-02-22)
      Despite the profound and widespread concern for the future of higher education physical education, there has been little systematic study on the topic. This research investigated the future by utilizing a two-round interview Delphi method. Five international experts were asked to project possible, probable, preferable and undesirable futures of the academic discipline in fifteen years time; specifically in regards to issues within the undergraduate degree programs, and the research sub-disciplines. The results of quantitative descriptive statistics and qualitative content analysis reveal an ever-changing higher education environment in the postmodern information age, which presents a complicating future for the academic discipline. The experts expressed concern that some disciplinarians will be a-futuristic and unable to operationalize the vast potential of the discipline at the institutional level, by continuing to use outdated and inappropriate frameworks of a modern era gone by.
    • How Meaningful Physical Education Experiences Influence Pre-Service Teachers’ Beliefs About Teaching

      Price, Caitlin; Applied Health Sciences Program
      The first purpose of this research was to explore how pre-service physical education teachers find and make meaning from their own physical activity experiences. The second purpose was to investigate the extent to which understanding their own meaning-making shapes pre-service teachers’ beliefs about teaching physical education. Researchers have developed insights into ways that young people make meaning through physical activity – for example, by participating in experiences that are fun, involve social interaction, provide challenge, and develop motor competence (Kretchmar, 2006) but less is known about ways teachers learn to foster these experiences. Through the method of photo-elicitation and two semi-structured interviews, pre-service teachers uncovered the source of meaningful situations they experienced as physical activity participants which informed their pre-service teachers’ pedagogical practice. A renewed focus on meaning-making carries the potential to shift the focus of current physical education programs away from mere fitness or skill development and toward the intrinsic motivational elements that are more likely to lead to lifelong participation.
    • Investigating the Relationship between Teaching Games for Understanding and High School Physical Education Students’ Enjoyment, Self-Efficacy, and Intentions to Enroll

      Robertson, Scott; Applied Health Sciences Program
      Physical education (PE) is a useful course which provides a variety of physical, cognitive, and affective benefits to students; however, rates of student enrollment in Canadian PE classes are in decline (Lodewyk & Pybus, 2013). Teaching Games for Understanding (TGfU) was developed as a means of teaching students to be better games players and enjoy PE more than traditional teaching methods (e.g. Collier, 2005; Mandigo, Holt, Anderson, & Sheppard, 2008). Research has demonstrated that there is a link between TGfU and enjoyment (e.g. Mandigo et al., 2008), self-efficacy (Gubacs-Collins, 2007), and between enjoyment and participation in sports or physical activity (Kidman & Lombardo, 2010); however, there has been minimal research examining TGfU’s effect on student enrollment. Three ninth-grade PE teachers and 71 grade nine students in a southwestern Ontario school obtained consent to participate in the study. Questionnaires were used to collect data on four occasions across a two-week TGfU unit. Repeated-measures analysis revealed that ninth grade student enjoyment, self-efficacy, and intentions to enroll remained static over time (p > 0.05). Analysis also revealed that students who reported high enjoyment at baseline decreased in enjoyment over the course of the TGfU unit (p = 0.00). Students reported that the unit was fun and they liked the games aspect of TGfU; while the students disliked the unit because it was boring. Findings of decreased enjoyment in students with initially high enjoyment is novel to this study with previous findings have shown an increase in enjoyment (e.g., Jones, Marshall, Peters, 2010). Future research should continue to examine the effects of various instructional models on student enrollment to provide the benefits that PE has to offer.