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ERIC Number: EJ1055765
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 76
ISSN: ISSN-1740-8989
The Open Society and Coach Education: A Philosophical Agenda for Policy Reform and Future Sociological Research
Piggott, David
Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, v20 n3 p283-298 2015
Background: The realisation of the strategic importance of high quality coaching to the achievement of national sport policy objectives is resulting in extensive movements to professionalise the coaching industry. Interest in coach education is therefore growing among academics and policy-makers alike. A recent review of literature in this field, however, reveals a troubling problem situation: formal coach education is important for coach learning but tends to be expensive, inflexible and overly technical and therefore has little real impact on coaching practice. The solutions offered by many academics are, unfortunately, vague and often philosophically flawed. This is particularly so when the "descriptive" model of communities of practice (CoP) is suggested as a "prescriptive" model for coach education. The first part of the paper, therefore, ends with an extended critique of the use of CoP as a model for coach education. Purpose: To provide a clear philosophical argument for the direction of reform for coach education, drawing on a normative theory of the ideal conditions for the growth of knowledge. Discussion: Starting with the argument that any descriptive (or "evidence-based") model is inherently conservative, the second part of the paper offers an alternative solution to the problem of coach education that is openly prescriptive (or normative). It is the Popperian ideal type of an Open Society (OS). It is argued that the concept of an OS is a better prescriptive model for coach learning for a number of reasons. First, it is based on a logically sound epistemological theory of the ideal social conditions for the growth of knowledge. Second, it is simple and easy for lay people to understand. Third, as an ideal type, it offers a target or goal against which progress towards a better method of coach education can be measured. In this final sense, it also offers a clear agenda for policy reform and future sociological research. Conclusions: The paper makes a series of practical recommendations for reforming coach education and its institutions based on the model of the OS. Foremost among these are making learning resources free at the point of use and using Web 2.0 technologies to democratise educational episodes and widen participation in coach education programmes of all kinds.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom