This research is a randomised controlled study and participating schools have been randomly assigned (by NatCen Social Research) to either an Intervention Group (IG) and asked to deliver some new activities in their PE programme, or to a Control Group (CG) and asked to continue with their normal PE lessons. For both Groups there are a number of activities for schools to undertake, both at the start, during, and at the end of the study.
To view the timeline and key tasks for the project, click here.
In all schools, the pupils in the target year group will undergo baseline assessments (in the final term of Year 7), which comprise tests of physical fitness; cognitive assessments; and questionnaires (about physical activity, sleep patterns, mood, motivation and wellbeing). The tests of physical fitness will be administered during PE lessons and will involve measures of speed and endurance. The school PE teachers will be involved in the administration of these tests. The cognitive tests (which include tests of memory, executive function and attention using button responses), and the questionnaires, will be online-based and administered either at school or completed ‘at home’.
Once each term, we will also provide each pupil with an activity monitor (a wrist worn device) to wear during a school PE day, to allow us to compare physical activity during intervention and control PE lessons. At the end of the intervention period (an academic year), the Year 8 pupils in all schools will repeat the assessments and perform attainment tests administered by NatCen Social Research (Independent Evaluators).
All schools will receive £500 after the final assessments.
PE Teacher Training
PE teachers in the intervention schools will be trained to administer the intervention. Our training package comprises a set of focused lesson principles and techniques for their delivery.
NatCen Social Research has been funded by EEF to carry out an independent evaluation of the ‘Fit to Study’ project. The aim is to assess whether ‘Fit to Study’ improves pupil attainment, and to identify the necessary conditions and potential barriers to the success of the study.
The Primary Outcome Measure (administered by NatCen Social Research) is academic attainment in maths, as measured by the Level 13 Progress in Maths test, provided by GL assessment at the end of the school year.