Date of Award


Document Type

Open Access Dissertation


Physical Education


College of Education

First Advisor

Collin A. Webster


This dissertation consists of three studies that examine service-learning (SL) as an approach to incorporating movement integration (MI) in elementary classrooms as part of a comprehensive school physical activity program (CSPAP). All three studies attempt to advance the knowledge base about using partnership approaches to supporting schoolbased physical activity promotion.

The purpose of study one was to examine the perceptions of preservice classroom teachers (PCTs), classroom teachers (CTs), and course instructors who participated in a constructivist-guided university course with a focus on MI and a SL component. Focus groups with 172 PCTs and individual interviews with 7 CTs and 4 course instructors were thematically analyzed using constant comparison techniques to identify perceived successes and challenges of the course. Findings centered on three themes, including realworld context (gaining entry but losing access, and placements and scheduling), learning embedded in a social context (peer support, reciprocal learning, real world outcomes, and social interactions), and scaffolding (teacher as facilitator and support structure).

The purpose of study 2 was to examine the experiences of PCTs, CTs, course instructors, and elementary students who were involved in a distance delivery version of the course described in Study 1. The distance delivery version of the course was designed using constructivist-guided SL and in accordance with recommended best practices for distance education. Using a qualitative single case study design, interviews, observations, and artifacts (e.g., PCTs’ reflections and academic work) were thematically analyzed. Findings indicated three themes, including student-centered approach (teacher as facilitator), benefit/importance of PA (future implementer, enjoyment of the real world, and I don’t like to sit), and connect and reflect (sharing new ideas and communication).

The purpose of study 3 was to conduct a systematic review to identify facilitators and barriers to (a) using MI and (b) using university-based SL in elementary school classrooms. Four online databases (Educational Resources Information Center, Google Scholar, PsycINFO, and PubMed) served as data sources for the study. Following the PRISMA guidelines, relevant published research on MI and SL, respectively, was identified using two separate searches and screened for inclusion in qualitative syntheses. Content analyses of the included articles (31 for MI and 5 for SL) were used to identify 26 facilitators and 15 barriers associated with MI and 22 facilitators and 24 barriers associated with SL. Data analysis was guided by Emmons’ (2000) social ecological model and involved categorizing facilitators and barriers for MI and SL based on commonalities and consistencies. The categories for MI included institutional factors (e.g., resources, administrative support, and monitoring) and intrapersonal factors (e.g., teacher confidence, and ease of implementation). The categories for SL included intrapersonal factors (e.g., shared decision making, and previous experience) and institutional factors (e.g., lack of training, management issues, and implementation challenges).

Overall, the findings from this dissertation provide evidence to support efforts aligned with using university SL to aid CTs in using MI.


© 2017, Robert D. Michael, Jr.