A study of previously disengaged physical education students within a modular physical education course
Jutras, Michael Eyrle
This study examined the impact of student choice on students who had not enjoyed their previous physical education experiences. The research question was: does student choice have an impact on the experiences of grade 10 students who have not enjoyed their previous physical education experiences? Literature on lifelong physical activity, problems with Canadian health and society, engaging disengaged students, and student choice were all examined in the second chapter. Literature specific to physical education was also examined; this included discussions on programmatic challenges, student motivation, and student choice. The promotion of lifelong physical activity is the major goal of many physical education curricula. Researchers have shown that students who enjoy their physical education classes are more likely to be active later in life. Currently many students do not enjoy their physical education programs. Allowing students the opportunity to choose what sports and activities they will be involved in within their physical education class has been shown to have a positive impact on student motivation and enjoyment. Absent from the body of literature is an examination of the role that choice in physical education plays in increasing motivation and enjoyment for students who have not enjoyed their previous physical education experiences. The study sought to learn about the experiences of students who have not enjoyed their previous physical education classes and what impacts they felt it may have on promoting lifelong physical activity adherence. Through purposeful sampling the study focused on the experiences of four students who were identified through a pre-study field investigation survey. Participants volunteered to take part in a one-on-one semi-structured interview with the researcher. The interviews provided a wealth of information on five themes. The themes that were most strongly represented in the interviews were: intrinsic motivation, self-determination, climate, engagement, and perceptions. The participants of the study were intrinsically motivated, felt a sense of self-determination, enjoyed the climate of their class, and were engaged in their learning. The participants also noted that their perceptions of physical activity had changed. Ultimately, the study showed that choice could have a profoundly positive impact on physical education experiences for students who have not previously enjoyed physical education.
DegreeMaster of Education (M.Ed.)
CommitteeBurgess, David; Noonan, Warren; Humbert, Louis; Stelmach, Bonnie; Renihan, Patrick; Kalyn, Brenda
Copyright DateSeptember 2009
modular physical education
engaging the disengaged