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The sport pedagogy research of the federal institute of sport science

A. Kirsch

So far, three research programs for the field of sport science have been established within the Federal
Republic of Germany: the first one was initiated in 1969 by the Central Committee for Research in
Sport: the other two were begun in 1971 and in 1976 by the Federal institute for Sport Science (BlSp).
The educational of the research program from 1976 are presented in this chapter. Other aspects of
the research plan not dealt with here concern research in sport medicines. Psychology, sociology,
science of coaching and movement, and facilities and equipment for sport and recreation, as well as
documentation and information in sport. Philosophy of sport; history of sport; sport and politics, sport
and law, and sport and economy are mentioned as possible research areas within the program;
however, no themes are named yet for these fields.

There are certain criteria that are used in selecting the research areas from the field of sport science
and that will be predominantly developed by the BISp. These include the meaning of practical aspects
of sport, the available research potential, the character of innovation, and the economic possibilities.
Because sport science is an interdisciplinary, or integrated science, interdisciplinary research
programs are especially important. The program has nine main aspects; coaching, development of
talents, diagnostic test for sport, facilities and equipment in sport, movement, social behavior in sport,
sport for all, sport for the handicapped, and sport-science film. Sport pedagogy should contribute to
most of these themes, if useful results are to be obtained.

Every research program must set priorities. This is necessary not only because of limited financial
resources but also because of the specific structure of the institution that is granting the money and
functioning as a coordinating agency. in the BISp, the priorities are given to themes concerning
performance and improvement of performance, because the Federal Government has a special
function in the support of top-level athletics. in the Federal Republic of Germany cultural
responsibility is based in the eleven states, which support in cooperation with the Federal Ministry
for Science and Education. Research in Sport pedagogy, with the main concentration being on school
sport. Within the program of the Federal Institute of Sport Science, the following educational topics
are included in the list of priorities: play and sport in preschool, role of the physical education teacher
and coach. Cooperation of school and Sport club, field of concentration in sport within the upper level
of high school (Sekundarstufe II), and sport for the handicapped.

The support of research is realized through research requests and research grants. Requests are made
by sport scientists either alone or in groups. These are examined by a specific committee to evaluate
their importance for sport science, their concept of research methodology, their possibility of
realization, and their underlying financial plan. Research grants are announced by the institute and
given to the respective applicants. This method guarantees on the one hand, that research is done in
the field, which was not previously considered to a great extent, and on the other hand, that sport
science does not lose its relationship to the actual problems of sport.

Status and Development

The present status of research support is mainly characterized by the discussion in previous years
that has led from the revision of the sport curriculum to the necessity for developing instructional
models and to the examination of these models on the basis of the respective theoretical construction
of the curriculum. According to the federal institute of sport science, research on talent support within
school as well as on conceptualization of youth sport on educational criteria has to be given
preferential support. The consequences of these research results for the relationship of school sport
and sport in club are of special significance with regard to questions of content and organization.

The future field of concentration can be divided into the three following aspects regarding the
previously mentioned fields of concentration:

1. Theory and methods of sport instruction

2. Theory of sport curriculum
3. Theory and organization of specific aspects of sport, especially of youth sport

The enlargement of the current program from the program of 1972 has to consider that the fields of
concentration in research so far fixed have to be dealt with further. This applies especially to the
improvement of teaching and learning programs, and to the development of learning -aim- oriented
test procedures, as well as to the empirical foundation of basic qualifications, which are necessary for
the pupil.

At the same time it has to be shown that through changed and enlarged perception of problems within
practical aspects of sport and through the enlargement of educational question, new tasks have been
formulated for research. On the one hand, sport aspects outside of school sport are becoming more
important because of increasing free time, the changing of age structure, and the use of sport exercise
and training within preventive and rehabilitation functions. On the other hand, question of
educational research have been enlarged within the discussion of socialization theory in regard to
social action. As a result, school and instruction have become a problem within the overall relationship
with other fields of social action. As a consequence and as a part of this problem, it can be seen that
school sport and sport instruction have to be interpreted and investigated with regard to the
relationship resulting from the enlarged social importance of the practical aspects of sport. It will be
necessary to investigated the action field of sport (in school and outside of school) on the basis of new
social science theories of action and communication and to ask question about the perspectives of
educational research.

Question related to the educational concept of coaching are getting more and more important
because of critical comments about athletics, which are widely known. In order to overcome the
critical uncertainly of top level athletes, models have to be developed first of all for securing their
professional careers. The large and extensive changes of sport instruction also require a structural
reform and qualitative improvement of physical education teacher training. This is concerned
especially with the problem of action competencies, which define the behavior of physical education
teachers and which should be reached through studies in sport pedagogy and sport science.
Therefore, it is necessary to do research in structural problem areas, which will determine the training
of physical education teachers.

Fields of concentration

In accordance with justifications given above, the following are fields of concentration for research:

Theory and Methods of Sport Instruction

1. Multidimensional evaluation methods of sport instruction as well as evaluation instruments and

tests within instructional research
2. Development of methods for counselling about talent and for the determining of talent by the
physical education teacher, including measures of talent support
3. Behavior and behavior change of the teacher; conditions of physical education teacher training,
and their consequences for sport instruction
4. Plans for extended study for physical education teachers
5. Optimization of the usage of media within sport instruction
6. Evaluation of situations and influencing factors in sports instruction (learning surrounding)

Theory of Sport Curriculum

1. Movement games for infant and preschool children

2. Empirical foundation of basic qualifications for sport instruction
3. Evaluation instruments for curricula and their parts, especially in primary schools and grades 5 to
10 (Sekundarstufe I)
4. Models and concepts for sport in grades 11 to 13 (Sekundarstufe II) especially the field of
concentration sport
5. Interaction and communication analysis of the action field sport under aspects of sport pedagogy

Theory and Organization of Specific Aspects of Sport

1. Investigations of educational planning of coaching in sport club and sport associations.

2. Comparative investigations of the concept, content, and effectiveness of fitness programs
3. Development of model concepts of sport for older people
4. Didactive models of therapy and rehabilitation within sport for the mentally and physically
handicapped as well as in measures of social work
5. Plans for sport for all

Other Aspects Included in This Section

1. Philosophy of sport
2. Sport history
3. Sport and politics