Application of structured group encounter to new university students in physical education classes

Por: H. Tsuchiya e Y. Matsuoka.

Athens 2004: Pre-olympic Congress

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Physical Education (P.E.) is an important part of the curriculum of universities in Japan. P.E. not only improves student physical fitness, it also serves to create a social support network. The purpose of conducting this study was to examine and assess to what extent structured group encounter (SGE) impacts new students in terms of helping them adjust to university life and adopt a favourable attitude toward P.E. An original SGE program was created and applied to them.


The subjects were 194 new university students enrolled in P.E.:158 males and 36 females. Six classes were randomly divided into SGE and Control groups. An original SGE program was provided on the other hand, classes for the Control group began with 10 to 15 minute lectures. Questionnaires were made to assess the degree of favourable response to P.E., the adjustment to university life, and the perceived social support. Questionnaires were conducted at the 1st class (Pre), the 6th class (Mid) and the 12th class (Post).


According to questionnaire responses in both groups, attitudes toward P.E. and perceived social support improved as the lesson progressed. A 2 (groups) × 3 (times) mixed-model analysis of variance yield a significant interaction both in scores of adjustment to university life and attitude toward P.E. In scores respecting adjustment to university life, a significant difference was found between Pre and Mid in the Control Group (p<.01) and respecting favourable attitude toward P.E. , in the SGE Group significant differences were found between Pre and Post, and in the Control Group between Pre and Mid, Pre and Post (p<.01) .

Discussion / Conclusions

SGE was one factor promoting self-understanding as well as mutual understanding among students [1] [2]. Also, SGE played a role in helping to understand students and in making decisions for student guidance afterwards. As a result, some students’ attitude toward P.E. clearly became more positive and proactive, to the extent that students were inspired to invite others to play badminton after class. In addition, observed behavior of students supports the conclusions reached in this questionnaire survey. Such case studies are necessary for future examination of the process of students’ adjustment to university life.


[1]. Kokubu Y.(1992): Structured group encounter. Tokyo, Seishin Shobo.
[2]. Tsuchiya H.(2001): Proceedings of International Conference for 20th JSSE, 191-194





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