Sport Education: Try Before You Buy

Year: 1993

Author: Alexander, Ken, Taggart, Andrew, Medland, Andrew

Type of paper: Abstract refereed

Sport education is an innovative curriculum model for secondary school physical education in which mixed ability teams are formed at the start of a 20 session (approximately) competitive "season". Students are taught to fulfil a range of roles associated with playing, umpiring, acting as a team coach, manager or captain, serving on a sports management board or on a duty team. The sport education model is a process with a potential for educating children into good sportspersonship. Twenty seven programs of sport education were conducted in Perth metropolitan and selected regional schools using New Zealand professional development materials in the first half of 1993. Teachers volunteered to try the alternative curriculum model as a part of their physical education programs. In answering eight research questions, we found strong outcomes for the affective domain but that much of the educational potential of the model remained unrealised. Adolescents' views of sport are presented and recent national concerns with the educative shortcomings of secondary physical education are presented as a background to reporting the results of the programs. Most teachers who tried sport education have chosen to repeat it; some are already in their second "season". Ongoing professional development and evaluation is required. A research agenda which addresses problems and issues confronting sport education is proposed.