ERIC Number: EJ709126
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Dec
Reference Count: 24
Coeducational and Single-Sex Physical Education in Middle Schools: Impact on Physical Activity
McKenzie, Thomas L.; Prochaska, Judith J.; Sallis, James F.; LaMaster, Kathryn J.
Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, v75 n4 p446-449 Dec 2004
Efforts to design the most appropriate learning environments for adolescents frequently lead to discussions of separate-sex versus coeducational schooling. Arguments and research supporting both types of schooling have been made, particularly as they relate to academic, socioemotional, and interpersonal development. The conduct of physical education classes in single-gender versus coeducational formats is widely debated internationally. U.S. perspectives on gender equity and physical education were recently summarized, and in this country Public Law 92-318 (i.e., Tide IX of the Educational Amendments of 1972) has promoted coeducational physical education for over 30 years. Although this class configuration is the most common, some practitioners in secondary schools still resist it. For this study, Twenty-four middle schools in Southern California consented to participate in a 2.5-year investigation of the effects of an innovative physical activity and nutrition intervention. Of these, nine schools provided some physical education classes in a single-gender format (about 20% of their total lessons). Data for the current study were analyzed from all lessons observed at these schools during baseline and from a subset of four schools that served as control sites during intervention years. The sample included 298 lessons taught by physical education specialists: 26 boys-only, 32 girls-only, and 240 coeducational lessons. Scheduled class length averaged 50 min (SD=4) and did not differ significantly by class gender composition (p=.452). Analyses were conducted in three steps. Boys-only (M=19.2 min) and coeducational classes (M=17.6 min) provided more MVPA than girls--only (M=13.4 min) classes, F(2, 15)=6.05, p=.012. The proportion of variance attributed to clustering by school was minimal (intraclass correlation=.07).
Descriptors: Educational Environment, Middle Schools, Adolescents, Sex Fairness, Physical Activities, Gender Differences, Physical Education, Single Sex Classes, Coeducation
American Alliance for Health, Physical Education, Recreation & Dance, 1900 Association Dr., Reston, VA 20191-1598. Web site: http://www.aahperd.org.
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Middle Schools
Authoring Institution: N/A