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Re-thinking pedagogical content knowledge for physical education teachers: implications for physical education teacher education
School of Education, Health and Social Sciences, Dalarna University, Falun, Sweden.
Örebro University, School of Health Sciences.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-4162-9844
2020 (English)In: Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, ISSN 1740-8989, E-ISSN 1742-5786, Vol. 25, no 5, p. 451-463Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: In this conceptual paper, we contribute to the discussion of pedagogical content knowledge (PCK) in physical education and physical education teacher education (PETE). There are two main limitations in the work inspired by Shulman’s [1987. “Knowledge and Teaching: Foundations of the New Reform.” Harvard Educational Review 57 (1): 1–21] concepts content knowledge (CK) and PCK. First, CK is exclusively interpreted as knowledge in and about movement, and excludes knowledge through movement. Second, contemporary understandings of CK and PCK have been mainly from a behaviour analytic perspective. By only adopting a behavioural perspective of CK, i.e. a perspective which aims to change students’ behaviours without necessarily changing knowledge or understanding, pre-service teachers are unlikely to reflect on context and culture or how these affect the students with whom they will work.

Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to add a new perspective to the contemporary discussion of PCK in physical education and PETE through elaborating on how PCK could be conceptualised ‘phronetically’. We believe that contextual and situational foci of a phronetic approach constitute an important dimension of teacher knowledge, and that this dimension is not captured or made visible by behaviour analytic discourse of PCK in movement cultures.

Method: For the conceptual task of expanding our understanding of PCK, we have been inspired by Thomas [2007. Education and Theory: Strangers in Paradigms. Berkshire: McGraw Hill], Shoemaker, Tankard, and Lasorsa [2004. How to Build Social Science Theories. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage], and Whetten [1989. “What Constitutes a Theoretical Contribution?” Journal Academy of Management Review 14 (4): 490–495] and their ideas of building theory through borrowing, reflective thinking, and metaphors.

Results: We outline four major assumptions made about PCK in the behaviour analytic research on physical education and PETE: 1. Physical education teachers must know how to perform activities with the correct technique, know the tactics and have knowledge about rules and etiquette; 2. Physical education teachers must know how to detect errors and design task progressions. 3. Physical education teachers must know how to select and modify appropriate tasks as well as give feedback. 4. Physical education teachers’ level of CK and PCK can be quantitatively measured.

Conclusions: From a phronetic perspective, we suggest that PCK could also involve: contextual characteristics for ‘new’ and integrative movement cultures; interpretation of students’ actions; identification and action on diversity during physical education teaching; development of a sensitivity for morally ‘right’ actions; and management of uncertainty involved in physical education teaching.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2020. Vol. 25, no 5, p. 451-463
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URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-80640DOI: 10.1080/17408989.2020.1734554ISI: 000517370700001Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85080148743OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-80640DiVA, id: diva2:1414561
Available from: 2020-03-13 Created: 2020-03-13 Last updated: 2023-12-08Bibliographically approved

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