Date of Conferral



Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




George Smeaton


Physical activity plays a key role in the health of children. Childhood obesity is increasing in the United States, and children are spending less time being physically active. Active participation by a physical education (PE) teacher in physical activities has been suggested as a means of promoting student fitness. The purpose of this quasi-experimental quantitative study was to determine whether modeling of physical activity by a PE teacher would increase student participation and physical fitness. Bandura's social learning theory provided the theoretical framework for the study. Participants included 311 4th and 5th grade elementary students enrolled in physical education classes. One group of students experienced PE teacher modeling in physical education class activities and the other group experienced no PE teacher modeling. Participation grades in physical education were used for participation scores, while the FITNESSGRAM was used to measure student physical fitness. Independent samples t tests were used to compare students' fitness and participation levels between the two groups. Results indicated no significant differences in fitness or participation between the groups based on teacher modeling. This study promoted positive social change by providing initial research findings to the local site on encouraging physical activity through teacher participation, which may be used to further examine student participation in physical activity.