Influences on curriculum value orientations of physical education teachers and implications for the profession.
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameMaster of Teaching and Learning
Curriculum value orientations are considered important as they influence the manner in which teachers implement the curriculum and undertake their teaching of physical education. The purpose of this study was to investigate what has influenced the development of curriculum value orientations of teachers of physical education in secondary schools and to consider the implications of these value orientations for curriculum implementation, and consider the influences for teacher development, and in-service professional development. The research utilised 'an existing inventory to establish the value orientations of nineteen secondary school physical education teachers. Interviews were then conducted to collect data from six of the teachers who formed two groups of three with different value orientations. Interview data was analysed using the process of constant comparison. Analysis revealed that influences. which have impacted on the formation of these teachers' value orientations can be classified within the categories of life experiences before teacher education, influences during teacher education, influences in the school setting and reflective practice. Findings indicate that secondary school physical education teachers have different value orientations and a range of factors has shaped their value orientations. These include teacher philosophy, teacher education, professional development, life experiences, curriculum, colleagues, schools and reflective practice. The discussion investigates how and to what extent these influences have shaped teachers' different value orientations. The value orientations and their implications for curriculum implementation are discussed and then the influences themselves are considered. Finally, in view of the influences, the implications for teacher education and in-service professional development are discussed. Teachers in this study enter teacher education with a sense of what it means to be a physical education teacher based on their own experiences in life, school and sport in particular. The way in which they interpret these experiences leads to different beliefs. These beliefs lead to the development of a value orientation, which in tum influences the way in which teachers make curriculum decisions, plan, implement and deliver their physical education programmes. This research indicates the extent to which life expenences, teacher education, and professional development impacts on value orientation is variable, but in order to create a change in value orientations, a key component is the development of critical reflection as a well established and ongoing habit. The study suggests that having an understanding of and an awareness of value orientations will enable teachers to consider their beliefs and the influences on these, and to make infonned decisions about curriculum and practice.