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Pupils' perceptions of and experiences, in team invasion games: A case study of a Scottish secondary school and its three feeder primary schools

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)179-201
Number of pages23
JournalEuropean Physical Education Review
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2008


It has been claimed that young children in schools in Scotland cannot relate to the activities that are taught in the more `traditional' PE curriculum, activities that predominately include team invasion games (TIG) such as basketball, soccer and hockey (Scottish Executive, 2004). However, one of the issues with this claim is that it does not appear to derive from any empirical, Scottish-based, research. The purpose of this study, therefore, was to investigate pupils' perceptions of and experiences in TIG within the PE curriculum in Scotland, specifically their perception of competence, enjoyment and the value they attach to games such as soccer and basketball. We gathered data from three year groups, primary 7 (P7) (age = 11 ± 0.8 yrs), secondary 2 (S2) (age = 13.5 ± 0.5 yrs) and secondary 4 (S4) (age = 15 ± 0.4 yrs) from one urban state school in Edinburgh and its three feeder primary schools (n = 285). All of the pupils in this study completed a questionnaire and a sample from each year group took part in a focus group interview. We found that P7 pupils valued the role of TIG within their PE curriculum more highly than the S4 pupils. For all of the year groups in this study, there was a positive relationship between their perception of competence and enjoyment of TIG and the value they attached to them. These findings warrant further research into the ways in which TIG are delivered in Scottish schools to understand more fully why pupils in Scottish schools value the role of TIG less as they move from P7 to S4.

    Research areas

  • competence, enjoyment, team invasion games, value/importance

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