Current research (Fisette, 2011; Hills & Croston, 2012; Slater & Tiggemann, 2011) indicates a significant lack of participation among adolescent girls in physical education. This behavior, the research suggests, may be explained by the possibility that physical education inadvertently foster a gender dichotomy by deploying learned ideologies of femininity. According to research (Azzarito, 2010; Fisette, 2011; Hills & Croston, 2012; Jeanes, 2011), young women are more explicitly affected by the gender dichotomy in the physical education classroom. This mixed method study sought a dynamic answer to the question of women’s avoidance and apparent dissatisfaction with physical education by exploring the attitude and satisfaction levels of first–year female college students toward their high school physical education classes. Questionnaires were used to examine the attitude and satisfaction levels that first–year female college students (N=51) exhibited towards their high school physical education experiences and to gauge their perception of the presence of a gender dichotomy in the physical education classroom. The quantitative data criteria narrowed the potential interview participants to nine girls. To give voice to their experiences, and to gain a better understanding of the gender dichotomy associated with participation in physical education, a feminist perspective guided the qualitative interviews. A basic qualitative approach with a feminist perspective guided the analysis of the interview data. The results of this study offer further and more complete evidence to explain young women’s lack of involvement in physical education classes. It also offers curricular and pedagogical suggestions for achieving a more inclusive physical education environment.
University of Minnesota Ph.D. dissertation. March 2014. Major: Kinesiology. Advisor: Mary Jo Kane. 1 computer file (PDF); x, 134 pages, appendices A-F.
Reimann, Bonnie Joan.
The gender dichotomy and its impact on the attitude and satisfaction levels of first-year female college students towards their high school physical education experience.
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