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An in-depth study of the survey conducted with pupils studying the subject special sports

Research project

Head of project

Magnus Ferry
Associate professor

Project overview

Project period:

2020-01-01 2021-06-30

Participating departments and units at Umeå University

Department of Education

Research area


Project description

The supply of school sport has increased since the new system was introduced in 2011 and today attracts many pupils to study at a RIG or NIU and thereby invest in their sports during the upper-secondary years. The supply of special sports, however, does not seem to be appealing or possible to choose for all pupils as it is primarily men, pupils with a Swedish background (ie born in Sweden and with at least one parent born in Sweden), pupils who come from families where the parents has a high level of education and pupils who are focused on team ballgames, who participate in the activities. The pupils who answered the questionnaires are to a large extent satisfied with the school sport environment of which they are a part of. The pupils are mainly satisfied with the organization, the training opportunities, the coaches’ knowledge in sports and the availability of certain types of resource support (for example in the event of injuries). Slightly lower, pupils value the possibilities for individual adaptations based on their needs. At the same time, the results of many questions show that school sports are valued higher by the male pupils than the female ones. The experiences between students who play team ball sports and students who play other sports vary depending on the question area. In general, the pupils' assessment of the questions and experiences of school sports and the subject special sport have improved during the period studied.

The purpose of the project is to describe the supply of school sport (specialidrott) in Sweden and, based on surveys with pupils studying the subject special sports at RIG or NIU, shed light on the differences and similarities that exist between different groups of pupils and the sports environments in which they operate; who are the pupils, what sports do they practice, how do pupils feel, how do pupils experience and assess the sports environments and the subject. The project analyses result from more than 7 800 pupils who responded to the 2018 survey, as well as the change over time for approximately 13 700 students who answered some of the questions between 2013 and 2019.