Edinburgh Research Explorer

Prof John Sproule

Personal Chair of Physical Education

Biography

  • BEd (Hons) Physical Education (Jordanhill College; Scottish School of Physical Education)

  • MSc (Loughborough University, School of Sport & Exercise Sciences)

  • PhD (Loughborough University, School of Sport & Exercise Sciences)

John Sproule is a Physical Educator with teaching experience in schools in England, Scotland & Singapore. He has worked in Singapore on a British Council/ Loughborough/ Ministry of Education Initial Teacher Training (ITT) project. He led the largest UK provider of ITT in Physical Education before taking up his appointment at Edinburgh. Examples of his consultancy activity include work in coach education for the International Division of the English Sports Council in the West Indies; evaluation research for the Australian Sports Commission in Australia; world cup preparation for the Scottish rugby squad; acclimation consultant for Commonwealth Games athletes & elite ultra-distance athletes participating in the Marathon Des Sables. He is Chief Examiner in Sport, Exercise & Health Science with the International Baccalaureate Organisation.

Current Research Interests

I have an ecclectic approach to physical education. Particular areas of interest presently include:

  • approaches to games teaching;
  • motivational climate during Physical Education lessons;
  • constructivism and coaching expertise;
  • self-regulation & self-determination in learning & teaching.


Research Student Supervision at Edinburgh:

Doctoral students - Principal supervision:

  • Stewart Ollis: Graduated 2008, 'Constructivist Expertise: a critical ecological and micro developmental perspective on developing talent'. Supported by the Scottish Target Shooting Federation.
  • Christine Nash: Graduated 2008, 'Relative practice as a tool for developing sport coaching expertise'.
  • Shirley Gray: Graduated 2008, 'Team invasion games within the Scottish PE curriculum: Rhetoric, reality and implications for practice'.
  • Neil Potts. Graduated 2009, 'An investigation into the influence of learning strategy on the acquisition of the Olympic weightlifting clean'.
  • Geoff Platt: Graduated 2010: 'Strength training as an intervention for children with DCD'.
  • Danielle Bryant: Graduated 2011 (ESRC funded), 'Teacher stress, learned optimism and coping strategies'.
  • Shaun Phillips: Graduated 2011 (Funded by a College Postgraduate Research studentship), The influence of carbohydrate supplementation on endurance capacity, sprint performance, and physiological responses to adolescent team games players to prolonged, high-intensity intermittent exercise.
  • Ray Bobrownicki, investigating the efficacy of alternative sources of information to promote gross motor function in adolescents: Options available to physical educators, commenced September 2010.
  • Anne Martin. 'Cognitive skills in overweight/obese preschool children', commenced November 2010.
  • Andrew Horrell: EdD, anticipate completion around December 2012.
  • Wen-Yu Chan; Self-determination studies, commenced September 2011.
  • Edward Hall: The coaching process - ethnography of apex women's rugby union, commenced Nov 2010.
  • Samir Qasan; Adapted Physical Education studies, commenced September 2011.
  • Sarah MacIsaac. ‘The truth about health: critical inquiry and a health and well-being curriculum.. Commenced September 2012.
  • Ben Tan (funded by NTU, Singapore) Teachers’perceptions and beliefs on the roles of outdoor education in supporting the delivery the MOE educational outcomes and goals, 2012.
  • Wendy Timmons; Hypermobility in young athletes, commencing January 2013.

Doctoral students - Co-supervision:

  • Julie Moote: 'Self-regulated learning', commenced 2009, anticipate submission inlate October 2012
  • Steve Banks: ESRC funded, 'Contextual interference and learning to kayak', commenced September 2008.

Doctoral students - Second supervision:

  • Rosemary Mulholland: Graduated 2009, 'Stress in trainee teachers'.
  • Mike Jess: 'Complexity theory and curriculum development', has passed his viva, graduated July 2012.
  • Mark Sanderson, funded PhD studentship, in partnership with the Scottish Institute of Sport, 'Exploring the nature of the neuromuscular response to whole body vibration', commenced January 2009, anticipate late September 2012 submission.

Collaborative Activity

I am currently engaged in several areas of personal academic interest in curriculum and pedagogy.

Examples of recent conference Presentations:

  • 2012 Investigating the development of self-regulation and motivation in young science students. International Association for Cognitive Education and Psychology, Geneva, Switzerland, May 25-26.
  • 2011 The effectiveness of coach education interventions. 2011 Petro-Canada Sport Leadership sportif: November 10-13, Toronto
  • 2010 Promoting perseverance and challenge in physical education. ICPESS: the 3rd International Conference of Physical Education & Sport Science, Singapore.
  • 2009 Optimism training as a means of reducing stress in student teachers. The First Wold Congress on Positive Psychology, International Positive Psychology Association, Penn State University, USA.

Teaching

  • Physical Education;
  • Paediatric factors in sport;
  • Environmental Physiology;
  • Dissertation supervision;
  • School Placement.

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