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More than just a game?

Boek - Boek

Ondertitel:The potential of sport programmes to foster positive youth development among disadvantaged girls.
Disadvantaged girls are, compared to other youth more often confronted with negative experiences such as exclusion, discrimination and feelings of incompetence in their institutional contexts. Such negative experiences are often detrimental for the development of these young people. Sports are often recognized as an opportunity to engage disadvantaged girls in a leisure context and not just in terms of participation but also in terms of positive youth development (PYD). Although researchers have recognised that components of a youth (sport) programme related to the organisation or staff may be critical for developmental processes, this type of research is still in its infancy. Furthermore, it should be noticed that a vast majority of existing research is based on samples of middle-class white youth, often because disadvantaged youth in general and disadvantaged girls in particular are simply underserved in the domain of sport. The point of departure of this PhD study has been two-fold. First, to determine which programme components have an impact in terms of fostering developmental outcomes. Second, to explore how such influential programme components could be changed to have an as large as possible impact on participating youth’s development. The book is built around four separate research chapters. The aim of the first chapter was to explore the relationship between peer group composition in sport programmes and PYD in disadvantaged girls and to determine whether this relationship was moderated by participants’ personal characteristics. However, the group composition is merely one component that may be critical for developmental processes. Another important programme component in youth sport programmes is the social psychological climate (i.e., containing all social mechanisms within a setting that help to shape one’s perceptions of what is valued). The motivational climate is one of these mechanisms that has an impact on an individual perceived competence. The aim of chapter 2 was, therefore, to investigate the roles of the coach- and, the largely unexplored, peer-created motivational climate in sport. The aim of chapter 3 was to gain more insight into the different social mechanisms leading to perceived developmental outcomes, because existing research related to the influence of the social psychological climate has been focusing merely on sport participants’ perceptions of the motivational climate and caring climate. Whereas the first three chapters have mainly focused on the experiences of disadvantaged girls in the selected sports-based programmes, the fourth chapter looks at the experiences of those who deliver sports for these young people. The purpose of the multiple case study approach used in chapter 4, including six Flemish (northern region of Belgium) sports-based developmental programmes, was to gain more insight into how sports is delivered for youth who could be considered as disadvantaged. The research unit Sport & Society from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel engages in independent social scientific research into sport as a broad social phenomenon. The focus is on the impact of sport and the evaluation of policy and management processes. Through active dissemination of research findings and the provision of educational activities (or training), we want to contribute to the development and improvement of policy and practice.
Series: PhD's SASO
Aantal pagina's: 159
ISBN:978 90 5718 524 3
Trefwoorden:disadvantaged girls, sport, positive youth development
  • ORCID: /0000-0001-5171-5055/work/95764280