University of Worcester Worcester Research and Publications

The Experiences of Children and Young People with Social Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties in Physical Education.

Medcalf, Richard (2010) The Experiences of Children and Young People with Social Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties in Physical Education. PhD thesis, Coventry University in collaboration with the University of Worcester.

RMedcalf_PhD_Thesis_(post_amendments,_July_2010).pdf - Accepted Version

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Research has previously highlighted the physical, social, affective and cognitive benefits of engagement in quality physical education (PE) (Bailey, 2006). Furthermore, practical, physical and expressive creative experiences in education have also been cited as being an important constituent when educating children and young people with social, emotional and behavioural difficulties (SEBD) (Cole and Visser, 1998). However, research has yet to address the experiences of the child with SEBD, as told by themselves, alongside the ideological benefits of their participation in physical education. As such, this study has examined how children and young people experience the National Curriculum of PE in England and Wales. Specifically working with those deemed by their school to have SEBD, this study aims to give voice to how participants create meaning of their PE experiences.
A case study methodology was adopted whereby, after a period of piloting and familiarisation, two periods of twelve weeks were spent with six adolescent boys, each described by their schools as having SEBD. A range of participatory methods were used to elicit their perceptions of PE. Inductive processes of analysis generated outcomes which showed signs of the idiosyncratic nature of varying experiences and multiple truths.
A number of themes emerged from the analysis of each case, aside to the contextualised responses of individuals. Participants spoke of their affinity towards the inherent practical nature of PE, which appeared to be forgiving of their desire for cathartic opportunities to participate physically. They regularly discussed their perception of PE being a subject allowing for relative freedoms not found elsewhere in their curricula. Narratives which described their experiences were also characterised by issues which focussed upon the non-educational aspects of the subject. The perceived pardon from the academic demands of school life, and the subsequent opportunities for socialisation with peers, were described as times which cemented the both positive and negative social systems at place in their classes.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information:

A thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the University's requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy.

Uncontrolled Discrete Keywords: physical education, children, young people, SEBD, social difficulties, emotional difficulties, behavioural difficulties
Subjects: L Education > LB Theory and practice of education
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Divisions: College of Business, Psychology and Sport > School of Sport and Exercise Science
Depositing User: Janet Davidson
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2010 14:02
Last Modified: 08 Jun 2021 09:24

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