Perceptions of physical education
University of Wales Institute Cardiff
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The purpose of this study was to explore the voices of learners to determine their perceptions of physical education and the activity choice they receive in their lessons by utilising qualitative methods. The study draws on other relevant literature, which led to the chosen methods being adopted. For the study ten female learners were selected from a local Cardiff High school from Key Stage 4 (KS4). The group were a mixture of learners those who had opted to take GCSE physical education and those who undertook physical education as one of the compulsory KS4 subjects. Semi-structured interviews were used and lasted between 25-30 minutes. Data analysis was completed through transcription of the interviews. Through transcription, key themes were identified, such as perceptions of physical education, activity choice in physical education, activities in their leisure time and finally future activity choice. The study illustrated that physical education was perceived to be an enjoyable and beneficial subject by the learners. However, the findings from the focus groups showed the general consensus of all the learners was that they should be given a broader choice of activities within which to participate in their physical education lessons. In addition to this they would like to be given the chance to give their opinion on what types of activities they would like to try. Strengths and limitations of the study are discussed and improvements suggested. The final chapter of the thesis reiterates the significance of speaking to learners in order to improve participation levels of female learners in physical education and concludes with proposals for possible future research.
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