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ERIC Number: EJ924794
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011
Pages: 16
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 43
ISSN: ISSN-1740-8989
Situated Learning in Youth Elite Football: A Danish Case Study among Talented Male under-18 Football Players
Christensen, Mette Krogh; Laursen, Dan Norgaard; Sorensen, Jan Kahr
Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, v16 n2 p163-178 2011
Background: The application of a social theory of learning and the notion of situated learning as a theoretical basis for understanding students' learning in PE is broadly recognised. Nevertheless, it is far more unusual for this theoretical approach to provide a basis for understanding learning processes in talent development in elite sport. Purpose: The purpose is to explore talent development and skill learning in youth elite football as a situated activity in a highly specialised community of practice (CoP) shared by talented male under-18 football players. From a social theory of learning perspective we seek to identify how the football player's ability to stay in elite football probably is influenced by the construction of the social practices in a football community of practice. Participants and setting: The research took the form of a case study of the best under-18 team from two Danish football clubs. Both teams competed in the best Danish tournament series and trained 16-20 hours a week. Data collection: Data were collected from participant observation and formal as well as informal interviews with four selected football players. The participant observations took place every day for three weeks at each club, and were performed as a "moderate participant", who observed day-to-day training, acted as an assistant coach, acted as a player in some exercises, and observed matches and other activities. Data analysis: The analysis of data was inspired by an ethnographical approach that involves a step-wise shift from data collection, analysis and description to write-up and theory, and an interpretive naturalistic approach. Findings: On the basis of observed differences in the organisation of the players' mutual relations, we established a categorisation of the two communities of practice into (1) a Small group and Position-specific based Community of Practice (SgPCoP), and (2) a Team based Community of Practice (TbCoP). The organisation influenced the ways in which players participated in the CoP, i.e. how their learning trajectories evolve in the community. The SgPCoP, rather than the TbCoP, created opportunities for players to "play upwards", mirror older players, and the feeling of being recognised by the coach. Conclusions: Due to the organisation of the training sessions, peripheral players in the SgPCoP experienced inbound learning trajectories, i.e. training-inclusion and multimembership, and assumed ownership of their long-term development as football players. This was only the case to a lesser extent in the TbCoP. (Contains 1 note.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Denmark