Complexity Thinking in Physical Education: Reframing Curriculum, Pedagogy and Research, 1st Edition (e-Book) book cover

Complexity Thinking in Physical Education

Reframing Curriculum, Pedagogy and Research, 1st Edition

Edited by Alan Ovens, Tim Hopper, Joy Butler


222 pages

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In the past two decades, complexity thinking has emerged as an important theoretical response to the limitations of orthodox ways of understanding educational phenomena. Complexity provides ways of understanding that embrace uncertainty, non-linearity and the inevitable ‘messiness’ that is inherent in educational settings, paying attention to the ways in which the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. This is the first book to focus on complexity thinking in the context of physical education, enabling fresh ways of thinking about research, teaching, curriculum and learning.

Written by a team of leading international physical education scholars, the book highlights how the considerable theoretical promise of complexity can be reflected in the actual policies, pedagogies and practices of physical education (PE). It encourages teachers, educators and researchers to embrace notions of learning that are more organic and emergent, to allow the inherent complexity of pedagogical work in PE to be examined more broadly and inclusively. In doing so, Complexity Thinking in Physical Education makes a major contribution to our understanding of pedagogy, curriculum design and development, human movement and educational practice.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1. Complexity thinking in Physical Education; Reframing pedagogy, curriculum and research - Alan Ovens, Tim Hopper, Joy Butler Chapter 2. Complexity of Intervention: Implementing Curricula in the Authentic World of Schools - Catherine Ennis Chapter 3. Introducing Conditions of Complexity in the Context of Scottish Physical Education - Mike Jess, Nicola Carse and Matthew Atencio Chapter 4. Complexity, Equity and Critical Approaches to Physical Education - Katie Fitzpatrick Chapter 5. Affordance networks and the complexity of learning - Alan Ovens & Kath Godber Chapter 6. Intentionality, Coordination dynamics and the complexity of human movement - Wayne Smith Chapter 7. Ongoing adaptation as a feature of complexity: Further thoughts and possible ideas for pedagogy in physical activity - Anthony Rossi & Timothy Carroll Chapter 8. "Another damned, thick, square book!" Tracing learning theory in physical education textbooks, 1900-2010 - Ellen Singleton Chapter 9. Enabling Constraints: Co-creating Situated Learning in Inventing Games - Joy Butler and Claire Robson Chapter 10. Effective Learning Design for the Individual: A Nonlinear Pedagogical Approach in Physical Education - Jia Yi Chow, Ian Renshaw, Chris Button, Keith Davids, Clara Tan Wee Keat Chapter 11. A nonlinear pedagogy for sports teams as social neurobiological systems: How teams can harness self-organization tendencies - Chris Button, Jia-Yi Chow, Bruno Travassos, Luis Vilar, Ricardo Duarte, Pedro Passos, Duarte Araújo and Keith Davids Chapter 12. Emergence in School Integrated Teacher Education for elementary PE teachers: Mapping a complex learning system - Tim Hopper Chapter 13. The "Complex Thinking" paradigm in Physical Education Teacher Education: Perspectives about the "reflective practitioner" concept in France - Nathalie Wallian and Ching-Wei Chang Chapter 14. Modification by Adaptation: Proposing Another Pedagogical Principle for TGfU - Karen Pagnano Richardson, Deborah Sheehy, Timothy Hopper Chapter 15. Thinking about complexity thinking for physical education - Richard Tinning and Anothony Rossi

About the Editors

Alan Ovens is a Principal Lecturer in the School of Curriculum and Pedagogy at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. His research interests are in the area of teacher education and educational sociology. He coordinates the Faculty’s Special Interest Network in Complexity (SINC) and leads a Research Network in HPE Teacher Education.

Tim Hopper is an Associate Professor in the School of Exercise Science, Physical and Health Education in the Faculty of Education at the University of Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. His research interests are in the areas of teacher education, physical education and how complexity thinking informs learning.

Joy Butler is an Associate Professor in the Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy at the University of British Columbia, Canada. Her research interests are in the areas of teacher education, constructivist learning theory, complexity thinking and situated ethics. She is active in international scholarship, organization and advocacy for TGfU.

About the Series

Routledge Studies in Physical Education and Youth Sport

The Routledge Studies in Physical Education and Youth Sport series is a forum for the discussion of the latest and most important ideas and issues in physical education, sport, and active leisure for young people across school, club and recreational settings. The series presents the work of the best well-established and emerging scholars from around the world, offering a truly international perspective on policy and practice. It aims to enhance our understanding of key challenges, to inform academic debate, and to have a high impact on both policy and practice, and is thus an essential resource for all serious students of physical education and youth sport.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
EDUCATION / Physical Education