Chapter 3: Research Methodology
The current research study intends to evaluate the effectiveness of exergaming in the context of physical education. The research aims to understand how exergaming can help physical education teachers to enhance the motivation levels of the students and determine if advanced technological integration in physical education settings can encourage students to ensure active participation. The central propositions of this descriptive research study are:
How exergaming intrinsically motivates the inactive students to take part in physical activities?
How exergaming enables the students to attain flow and enhance their performance in physical activities?
How can physical education teachers attain the equilibrium, between structure and freedom after integration of exergaming?
In this chapter, the researcher will provide a methodological approach and the overall roadmap of how empirical research will be conducted. The researcher will justify the methodological choices to establish reliability. The use of methodological decisions is critical in a study to explain the research process that the researcher undertook in obtaining the findings. Main methodological components to be discussed in this chapter are research paradigm, research design, research strategy, timeframe, research approach, reliability and validity, ethical considerations and limitations associated with current empirical research.
The present study will take a particular procedure that the researcher employed in obtaining the findings. The investigating will utilize descriptive approach. A descriptive research entails studying the affairs of a specific phenomenon as they are at present. The researcher controls the variables used in the investigation with the aim of determining the characteristics that are emerging from the data collection. The intention is also to identify what is happening, why it is happening and how it became to occur. Later, the researcher provides the descriptions of the findings that are revealed throughout the research process (Ethridge, 2004). By undertaking descriptive research, the researcher will understand the current problems through a data collection process that allows the description of the situation in a complete way than when the method is not used (Fox & Bayat, 2007). In this case, the behavior and characteristics of the sample population will be described. The variables that will be of focus in this descriptive study are the students and teachers in the physical education class. Therefore, the descriptive research will be crucial in describing, explaining as well as validating the research findings.
There are advantages associated with carrying out descriptive research, and these are reasons as to why the researcher found this method useful for the current study. It is a valuable method of analyzing non-quantified problems and subjects (Alvesson & Skoldberg, 2018). There is the probability of the researcher observing the phenomena in a complete, natural and unchanging environment. The researcher will get a chance of integrating the qualitative as well as quantitative methods during data collection. There is also less time take in this type of research when compared to quantitative experiments.
However, there are various disadvantages that the researcher may experience when undertaking the descriptive research. It will not be possible to test the findings or verifying the research problem statistically (Creswell & Creswell, 2017). Since there will be no statistical tests undertaken, the results may have a particular level of bias. It will not be possible to repeat the process due to the nature of data collection. The results will not form a basis to identify the cause of the research problem.
Based on the research objectives, the researcher will be answering the how questions that regarding the use of exergaming technology in physical education classes. The intention is to develop a profile that faithfully gives a reflection of the use of this advancement in technology in the physical education of students who are physically inactive. The following subtopics provide detailed information that relates to the descriptive research and how data was collected. First, the researcher will explain the research paradigm that will be suitable and employed in this study. The research design, sample, and population, instrumentation, and data collection, as well as data analysis procedure, will be described.
3.2.1 Research Paradigm
Research paradigm provides a philosophical foundation for whole research. By definition, a research paradigm entails the ways that are researcher uses to explain the primary set of beliefs held and their influence on the method of undertaking the research. There are various research paradigms that researchers employ in their studies including positivist, post-positivist, constructivism, objectivism and critical theory among others.
This descriptive research study will derive the philosophical support from realist philosophical paradigm. Realism philosophy is based on the idea of independence and freedom of human mind (Creswell, 2017; Shannon-Baker, 2016). It allows the researcher to choose research methods that best serve the purpose and add to the existing body of knowledge without imposing inflexible methodological restrictions. Studies based on this research philosophy combine different techniques to answer the multidimensional research questions (Bryman & Bell, 2015).
The current research uses a quantitative and qualitative method of obtaining data. Therefore, it will also integrate the positivist and interpretive philosophical aspects while exploring the effectiveness of exergaming integration in the physical education context. The combination of positivist and interpretive philosophies will result in generating in-depth information about exergaming influence on different physical education outcomes.
A positivist paradigm usually assumes a quantitative method of research and a constructivist paradigm uses a qualitative methodology. It means that the current research employs a mixed method approach where qualitative and quantitative research will be undertaken to come up with the findings. A positivist paradigm informs the research design to be adopted and answers to the research question to a greater extent. The two paradigms are explained in the following two sections in details.
220.127.116.11 Positivism Philosophy
This paradigm holds that scientific proof is the single method of establishing the truth as well as objective reality. Anything that cannot be proven through scientific approach does not exist as science is the only source of true knowledge. The methodology, techniques, and procedures utilized in investigating nature for the appropriate framework for carrying research on the social world. The empirical approach in research aims at obtaining knowledge that has a direct association with experience whereby the emphasis is on causes and the facts about a particular behavior. The empirical knowledge obtained based on the positivist paradigm has a better representation of truth when compared to other sources such as theology and metaphysics. When studying human action using the positivist paradigm, the objects surrounding people have existed as well as meaning. They are also independent of people's consciousness and not influenced by the actions of humans.
18.104.22.168 Interpretive/constructivist Philosophy
The interpretative paradigm assumes the understanding of the world as experienced by other people. Interpretativists assume that the nature of reality, knowledge and the sources, the values and role during the research process depends on the consciousness and self-awareness humans. It means that human experience affects the results of the research and that the objects surrounding people are not independent.
3.3 Research Design
Research design is the roadmap of the whole academic investigation. Studies based on exploratory research designs intend to explore an under-explored research phenomenon. Explanatory studies intend to "test" a phenomenon which has been adequately explored by previous studies. While descriptive studies intend to describe a research phenomenon to enhance the understanding and contribute to existing pool of knowledge (Sekaran & Bougie, 2016). The literature review reveals that although, past studies have explored the effectiveness of exergaming in physical education context, more description is required to understand how it assists the physical education teachers to maximize teaching effectiveness, enhance motivation of students to actively participate in activities and generate positive health-related outcomes (Baillot et al. 2018). Hence, descriptive research design suits best in this regard. Moreover, the researcher will conduct whole investigation by choosing one school, which will make this descriptive study a descriptive case study research design. Descriptive case study research design will allow researchers to conduct an in-depth evaluation within narrow research scope and provide a description that is necessary to understand the impact of exergaming on physical education effectiveness (Yin, 2017).
Based on the positivist assumption, the descriptive study will be selected as suitable for the research as the purpose is to predict the results, test the defined theory in literature review as well as find the strengths existing in the associations between variables. The cause and effect relationship aspect of the positivist approach will be useful in explaining the descriptive research design used in this research (Creswell & Creswell, 2017). Ideas, concepts, and theories were first defined to point out the variables of interest. The problem statement was also described to specify the variables and their relationships. The variables were operationalized in the conceptual framework and are useful in verifying as well as confirming the results of the research. The quantitative study will operationalize the variables of teachers and students in the physical education class as well as the use of exergaming technology.
The descriptive case study design is also explained by the interpretive paradigm of research as the purpose will be to understand and explain the experiences of people. Since the investigation will take place in a natural setting, it will aim to establish the expressions of the participants regarding the phenomenon under study. The interpretive researcher will be aiming at understanding the human experiences in this situation. The primary assumption here will be the possibility of existing multiple realities about the phenomena that inform the research process. It explains the use of research questions that are open-ended, descriptive and not directional to avoid limiting the inquiry. The interpretive research paradigm also describes the use of sub-questions provided in the interview guide questions for educators (Appendix 2). These are useful questions that guide the methodology as well as the methods that will be used by the researcher in answering the broad-based research questions.
The interpretive paradigm also explains the ethical considerations that the researcher will apply when researching data collection process. In this case, the model describes why the researcher will need to perform the analysis personally. The study is subjective and requires the researcher to provide explanations of the values and ideological biases that may occur during the collection of data. It will also be critical to explain the relationship of the researcher with the participants, the essence of the study and importance of the topic to the respondents. Accessing the participants and making...
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