Academic journal article Physical Educator

Effectiveness of the Practice Style and Reciprocal Style of Teaching: A Meta-Analysis

Academic journal article Physical Educator

Effectiveness of the Practice Style and Reciprocal Style of Teaching: A Meta-Analysis

Article excerpt

The Spectrum of Teaching Styles (Mosston & Ashworth, 2008) is a pedagogical theory that provides a solid model for the systematic generation of research questions and for the organization of relevant results. According to Mosston and Ashworth (2008), the Spectrum consists of a continuum of 11 landmark styles. The styles can be clustered into either reproduction or production. The reproduction styles include the command style, practice style, reciprocal style, self-check style, and inclusion style. In reproduction styles, the purpose of the instruction is the replication of specific known skills and knowledge. The teacher specifies the subject matter of the lessons, indicates the learning conditions by identifying the teaching style, and defines the criteria for correct task completion. The class climate is one of performing the model, repeating the task, and reducing errors (Mosston & Ashworth, 2008).

The production styles include the guided discovery style, convergent discovery style, divergent discovery style, individual program, learner-initiated style, and self-teaching style. The production styles require students' engagement in cognitive operations, such as problem solving, inventing, comparing, contrasting, and synthesizing. The class climate favors patience and tolerance and individual cognitive and emotional differences (Mosston & Ashworth, 2008).

The transition from one landmark style to another represents certain decisions being shifted between teacher and learner. The decisions are organized into three mutually exclusive sets: (a) pre-impact; (b) impact; (c) post-impact. The pre-impact set contains decision categories such as objective of the lesson, selection of a teaching style, subject matter, class climate, where to teach, organizational arrangements, evaluative procedures, and time (e.g., starting and stopping time). The impact set contains the decision categories of implementing the pre-impact decisions and adjusting them if needed. The post-impact set contains the decisions categories of gathering information about the performance of the learners, assessing performance against criteria, providing feedback to the learners, and assessing the selected teaching style (Mosston & Ashworth, 2008).

This study examined two of the reproduction teaching styles: the practice style and the reciprocal style (the rationale for selecting these two styles is given in the Method section). Because all readers may not be familiar with these styles, an overview of them is given.

The practice style is the first in the Spectrum that involves the student in the decision-making process (Mosston & Ashworth, 2008). Nine decisions of the pre-impact set can be shifted to the learner: posture (how to posture for the task), location (where to locate in the environment), order of tasks, starting time per task, pace and rhythm (how quickly to perform the task), stopping time per task, interval (the time between two tasks or parts of tasks), attire and appearance, and initiating questions for clarifications (when to ask questions about the task). The teacher makes the rest of the pre-impact set decisions, as well as all of the post-impact set decisions. During practice, the teacher observes the performance of each student, offers him or her individual and private feedback, and is available to answer relevant questions (Mosston & Ashworth, 2008).

In the reciprocal style, learners are organized in pairs with each learner assigned a specific role. One learner is the doer who performs the task and the other is the observer who offers immediate and ongoing feedback to the doer using a criteria sheet designed by the teacher. At the end of the practice, the doer and the observer switch roles (Mosston & Ashworth, 2008). Mosston and Ashworth (2008) argued that certain strengths can be realized in this style of teaching: (a) Learners learn to give feedback to a peer, which results in a higher number of correct responses by the doer because of the increased frequency of feedback provided by the observer; (b) learners learn to give and receive feedback with a peer, which results in an expansion of learner socialization skill; and (c) learners learn to perform and analyze movements by observing the performance of the doer, comparing the performance against criteria, and drawing conclusions about the accuracy of the performance. …

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