Development of a Diagnostic Procedure for Swimming Skill Analysis: The Owl's Eye

Publication: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution - Published abstract for conference with selection processResearchpeer-review


One of the main tasks of PE teachers is to analyze their students’ skill levels to design appropriate lessons and adapt instructions to the students’ individual needs¹. A re-cent study indicates that teachers use different strategies to analyze swimming skills, ranging from simple movement observation to more structured (but still informal) procedures². Most teachers in that study expressed uncertainty regarding the accu-racy of their approach and a desire for a diagnostic procedure based on scientific findings. While there are formal assessments to measure the skills and motor com-petencies of children in the water (i.e., the Scale to Measure Aquatic Competence³, the Actual Skill Test⁴, and the Assessment of Basic Aquatic Skills⁵), these procedures do not seem to be suitable for use in school swimming lessons. We assume that teachers may avoid these procedures due to the high effort that is associated with their implementation. Further, none of these procedures provide specific guidance on how to conduct the assessment within the challenging conditions of school swim-ming lessons. To face this problem, we aimed to develop a diagnostic procedure for swimming skill analysis that is feasible for everyday use in teaching situations and helps to design individualized lessons. We hermeneutically analyzed the existing lit-erature to derive a didactic framework that structures the acquisition of basic aquatic skills. We then used this framework to develop a first approach of a diag-nostic procedure in collaboration with swimming education experts. Subsequently, teachers (n = 14) were asked to test the procedure in their swimming lessons and to evaluate its feasibility and perceived value. The teachers appreciated the procedure, however, raised additional valuable suggestions for improvement that resulted in final adjustments made by an extended expert group. In its current form, our pro-cedure (named The Owl’s Eye) consists of two stages: (1) Students complete two tasks and are assessed by the teacher. This gives teachers a first insight and allows them to form subgroups. (2) Additional tasks can be used to gain more detailed in-formation on the swimming skills within those subgroups. The two-stage procedure allows for a quick analysis of the students' swimming skills (even in larger learning groups) and appropriate lesson planning. The Owl’s Eye provides a promising foun-dation for improving the accuracy and efficiency of swimming skill analysis. In the future, we aim to explore further possibilities to improve the procedure’s range of application. One particular aim is to develop a digitalized version to enhance its ac-cessibility and usability for teachers. [1] Heck & Scheuer (2019). DOI:10.1007/978-981-13- 1179-6_339-1 [2] Fokken et al. (2023). DOI:10.1123/jtpe.2022-0297 [3] Moreno Murcia et al. (2020). DOI:10.3390/ijerph17176188 [4] Mertens et al. (2021). DOI:10.3390/ijerph19010446 [5] Vogt & Staub (2020). DOI:0.7752/jpes.2020.02085
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationBook of abstracts : The 2024 AIESEP International Conference "Past meets the Future"
PublisherUniversität Jyväskylä
Publication date2024
Publication statusPublished - 2024
Event2024 AIESEP International Conference - University of Jyväskylä, Jyväskylä, Finland
Duration: 14.05.202417.05.2024


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