Conceptual Physical Education Courses in American Colleges and Universities: Their Potential to Impact Students' Physical Activity Behavior. (Pedagogy)

Article excerpt

The prevalence of sedentary behavior and its accompanying health consequences is well documented: Conceptual physical education (CPE) courses, which combine activity experiences with a lecture component, also referred to as multidimentional courses, currently exist in a majority of colleges and universities nationwide, and are settings in which large numbers of young adults can be reached with health promotion programs. The assumed objective of CPE is that students will gain knowledge and skills to enable them to lead more healthy and active lifestyles. Much research has been done with regard to factors that show association with adoption and maintenance of physical activity and exercise behavior, but little is known regarding the extent to which theoretical constructs of activity adoption and maintenance are incorporated in these courses. The purpose of this research was to (a) develop a practitioner's model of CPE instruction based on factors identified in the literature that show association with adoption and maintenance of activity behavior; (b) determine what instructors of CPE courses define as course objectives, content and content delivery methods, and (c) compare reported CPE course characteristics to the practitioner's model of instruction for the purpose of enabling instructors to enhance the potential of their course to promote students' long-term activity behavior. …