Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
The purpose of the study was to examine the influence of teaching approaches on thoughts and practice behaviors of students, and how those thoughts and behaviors affect transfer of learning. First, a self-report instrument for assessment of cognitive processes that meditate motor skill outcomes was validated. The cognitive processes included prior knowledge usage, self-efficacy, critical thinking and attention-concentration. University students who had taken a physical activity class (N=409) completed the questionnaires. Three out of the initial four subscales were confirmed as fitting the data. In a university golf activity class, students were assigned into three groups for instruction to learn a golf-pitching task: guided discovery (scaffolded movement challenges using task cards to learn movement concepts), model group (students were presented concepts and shown a correct model) and a control group (received no information except the initial basic instruction the other two groups also received). Instruction lasted six days. Skill performance scores, form scores and self-report cognitive measures (cognitive processes questionnaire and strategies students used to be successful) were recorded. Results indicated that it was the lower-skilled students were responsible for improvements over time. Students used different strategies depending upon the instruction they received. Students in the trial and error used attentional strategies, those in the correct model reported that it was the technique related to posture and grip that helped and the guided discovery group clearly concentrated on applying concepts to be successful. However, no differences in transfer were evident. It is possible that guided discovery students did not have enough time to translate their understanding into outcomes. The results of the study provide evidence to support a mediating process perspective framework for understanding the links between teacher and student variables, and student variables and outcomes. Researchers should continue to design studies to explain how different instructional conditions and students variables elicit different cognitions and strategy use from students. In the future, it is important to investigate when and under what conditions certain behaviors and thoughts are elicited by the instructional approach will lead to more successful performance on skill and transfer tests.
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Rukavina, Paul Bernard, "The effect of scaffolding movement challenges on students' task-related thoughts and performance" (2003). LSU Doctoral Dissertations. 3076.