'We're definitely cost effective as we cover teachers cheaply': A review of AOTT's impact on Primary PE.
Cardiff Metropolitan University
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The purpose of the study was to consider whether adults other than teacher’s (AOTT’s) have the content and pedagogical knowledge to deliver high quality physical education (HQPE) in primary schools. The study focused on what professional development and training was undertaken by AOTT’s. The study identified what teaching styles AOTT’s use and evaluated what informs their choice of teaching style. AOTT’s knowledge of the national curriculum for physical education (NCPE) was also analysed. Additionally, understanding whether AOTT’s teach the NCPE was considered in the study. Gaps in existing research, coupled with negative press surrounding AOTT’s work provided the rationale for the study. Eight semi-structured interviews were carried with AOTT’s that work in primary schools in South Wales. All interviews were transcribed by the researcher immediately after being conducted. Data analysis was both inductive and deductive. Relevant literature was drawn upon to help emphasize the significance of the study’s findings. The study found that AOTT’s don’t have enough training to impact learning. They lack behaviour management skills, knowledge of the NCPE and content specific knowledge in dance and gymnastics. AOTT’s lack pedagogical knowledge and tend to teach using direct methods. They lack knowledge of assessment for learning and don’t have enough time with a single class to really impact learning. Companies recruiting AOTT’s lack complexity in their recruitment processes, making it easy for candidates to obtain the role. Positively, AOTT’s are viewed as role models by pupils, provide extra-curricular links, and help out in other areas of the school. Viewing AOTT’s as role models and providing extra-curricular links must be interpreted with caution. This is because the study’s findings indicate flaws in their role, making it unclear as to whether they are actually good role models. Future research arsing from the study identifies a clear need for an observational study reviewing the quality of AOTT’s teaching. Additionally, research into sport specific courses would benefit the education sector, as there is a clear need for more pedagogical knowledge to be incorporated within them.
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