Why research matters: current status and future trends in physical education pedagogy

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The purpose of this paper is to consider current and future trends in physical education research in Europe. My starting point is a statement of the vital importance and relevance of research in physical education and why research matters. In preparing for this task, I reviewed current and future trends within European-authored research published in four English-language journals in the decade between 2000 and 2009 in order to provide a context and a perspective. I begin the paper with a report on the proportion of Europeanauthored papers that were published in these journals, the country of origin of the papers' authors, and the topics of the papers. Next, I identify some trends in this analysis of these journal publications, in particular comparing journals and the two halves of the decade. Finally, this context frames a widerranging analysis of research in physical education; I ask five questions which lead us into a discussion of critical issues for the future of research in our field. Through each of these questions and the issues that arise, I seek to show why research is important, and why it needs to matter more, to more people.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-44
Number of pages34
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2010


  • physical education
  • research
  • academic research


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