ERIC Number: EJ1064195
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Jun
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 31
Effect of an Exercise and Weight Control Curriculum: Views of Obesity among Exercise Science Students
Richardson, Laura A.; Fister, Carrie L.; Ramlo, Susan E.
Advances in Physiology Education, v39 n2 p43-48 Jun 2015
Awareness of effective weight management strategies is necessary to prepare exercise science students for future work with obesity. Exercise science faculty members developed a course related to exercise as a therapeutic tool and options available for weight loss. The purpose of the present study was to investigate student views of weight management and obesity, which can be a difficult task using traditional methods such as Likert scale surveys. To investigate student views relative to the course content, Q methodology, which is a mixed-method research approach, was used at the beginning and end of the course. Students completed a Q sort, ranking 44 statements related to obesity in accordance to their own points of view. The pretest/posttest design enabled an opportunity to determine if course goals were accomplished and if student perceptions related to obesity were transformed. Factor analysis of precourse sorts revealed that students possessed a naïve singular view of weight-related concepts. Analysis of sorts at course completion resulted in a two-factor solution revealing changes in perspective; some students took on a health professional type of view, whereas others demonstrated antifat views. In conclusion, the findings revealed key variables that should be addressed in curricula involving therapeutic obesity interventions. An improved curriculum based on these results should better encourage students to develop a broad comprehension of multifactorial causes and treatment for weight management and obesity. Implementing the use of Q methodology may serve as a valuable asset to measure and evaluate subjectivity of obesity discrimination. Antifat attitudes among exercise science students may influence future clients' potential achievements.
Descriptors: Body Weight, Exercise Physiology, College Faculty, Therapy, Course Descriptions, College Students, Student Attitudes, Q Methodology, Mixed Methods Research, Pretests Posttests, Factor Analysis, Attitude Change, Predictor Variables, Curriculum Development, Body Composition, Change
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Authoring Institution: N/A