The social construction of pedagogic discourse in policy for physical education and school sport
SubjectsX370 Academic studies in Education (across phases)
physical education and school sport
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AbstractOver the past decade in the UK, the rise in salience to government of physical education and school sport-related policy interventions has been remarkable for the wide-ranging array of objectives that these interventions have been expected to realise. This thesis analyses and evaluates government's sports policy for PESS centred on the Physical Education, School Sport and Club Links (PESSCL) strategy and Physical Education and Sport Strategy for Young People (PESSYP). These strategies together arguably represent the most significant initiatives relating to physical education and school sport (PESS), shaping the possible forms of PESS could take in the 2000s. Drawing on Basil Bernstein's (1990, 1996) theory of the social production of pedagogic discourse as the main framework used to investigate the policy for PESS, this thesis discusses the complexities and inequalities of policy-making in terms of examining dominant physical cultural discourses embedded within PESSCL and PESSYP, and the main agents/agencies contributing to the policy for PESS and evaluation processes. In addition, this thesis adopted a grounded theory approach to look at patterns of evidence in a range of resources from policy documents, newspapers, official evaluation studies and interviews, analyses that were underpinned by the research aims and theoretical framework of the study. This thesis identifies a number of physical cultural discourses constructing and constituting policies and strategies for PESS, including discourses of sport, health, citizenship, lifelong participation, and Olympic/Paralympic legacy. Moreover, this thesis presents evidence, consistent with Goodson‟s (1990) thesis about the social construction of school subjects, of struggles and contestation among vying groups, in this case between the Youth Sport Trust and Sport England (i.e. within the Official Recontextualising Field) as well as between the Youth Sport Trust and Association for Physical Education (i.e. between agencies within the Official Recontextualising Field and Pedagogic Recontextualising Field respectively). Furthermore, the powerful recontextualising agents/agencies including the media contribute to the recontextualisation of the discourse in which PESS policies are embedded. Finally, this thesis questions whether the main official evaluation studies undertake "evidence-based‟ policy making and practice because the evaluation studies not only provide implausible evidence but they are also focused solely on "numbers‟, whilst pragmatic and critical voices are excluded from the process of evaluation. Building on these key findings, this thesis concludes with a discussion of the implications for PESS. In particular, I discuss the possibilities for PESS to realise authentic forms of physical culture in schools in the context of a dominant sport discourse and an ongoing reduction in the autonomy of the Pedagogic Recontextualising Field. Finally, this thesis suggests that there is an urgent need for promoting communication between policy makers from within the Official Recontextualising Field and researchers and educators from within the Pedagogic Recontextualising Field and practitioners in the Secondary Field in order to achieve sustainable policy development school physical education and youth sport that benefits all young people in the future.
CitationJung, H. (2014) 'The social construction of pedagogic discourse in policy for physical education and school sport'. PhD thesis. University of Bedfordshire.
PublisherUniversity of Bedfordshire
TypeThesis or dissertation
DescriptionA thesis submitted to the University of Bedfordshire in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy
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