Newsletter 2 April 2015

Welcome from the PEPAYS Ireland Co-Directors

Dear colleagues,

We are delighted to bring you the 2nd edition of the PEPAYS Ireland newsletter. Firstly we’d like to draw your attention to the new logo (above!) which was designed by Ireland Website design who are also responsible for developing the new PEPAYS Ireland website which will be “live” at the end of April. PEPAYS Ireland was successful in securing funding from the National Forum for the Enhancement of Teaching and Learning in Higher Education to contribute to the costs associated with constructing a PEPAYS Ireland website. The National Forum invited all those who secured funding to attend a meeting in Dublin in March 2015. Ann MacPhail attended and presented on the vision and strategic goals of PEPAYS Ireland as well as noting what the funding has allowed us to do to date as regards the website design and logo design. We plan to formally launch the website at the PEPAYS Ireland Forum in June 2015.

An Advisory Board Meeting was held on 20th February. At this meeting the Strategic Plan 2015-2018 was formally adopted. Thanks to everyone who provided feedback on the draft plan last June. In addition a Postgraduate Representative, Danielle Power (DCU), has been appointed to the Advisory Board following an open call. You can read about Danielle below. 

Our Research Clusters have been very active recently. Three “Let’s Talk” events have been held in Cork and Limerick (see news item below). Dr Sarahjane Belton of DCU has agreed to Co-Chair the Active Schools-Active Communities Research Cluster alongside the existing Co-Chair Dr. Déirdre Ní Chróinín (Mary Immaculate College). A new “Outdoor and Adventure Learning” subgroup has been formed as part of the Facilitating Learning through Teaching and Coaching Cluster. You can read more about the work of this subgroup below. 

The Organising and Programme Committee has been very busy making preparations for the upcoming Annual Research Forum on 9th June. The exciting programme includes Prof Stewart Trost (Queensland University of Technology) as keynote speaker. We look forward to the many presentations on the day and catching up with colleagues at the BBQ in the evening.

We hope you enjoy reading this newsletter. Many thanks to Ian Sherwin for compiling all the information and everyone who contributed items.

Best wishes

Elaine Murtagh and Ann MacPhail (Co-Directors)



Forum 2015


PEPAYS Ireland member wins INTO Bursary

Invitation to co-chair a research cluster

Outdoor Learning and Research – Michelle Dillon

Postgraduate appointment to the Advisory Board

The Physical Education and Sport Sciences e-Zine

Childhood Obesity Campaign Update

Conferences and Events


Recent research and abstracts


Conference abstracts


Grants and funding

Calls for Papers


Let’s Talk Series




Forum 2015


2015 PEPAYS Ireland Research Forum 

Applying Research to Practice and Policy for Promotion of Lifelong Physical Activity

Hosted by the University of Limerick and Mary Immaculate College

in the PESS Department at the University of Limerick


Tuesday 9th June 

Research Forum 2015 is a 1-day event ending with an evening BBQ and music in the Stables patio. An informal lunch will be served in the PESS café or outside patio (depending on weather). Both meals are part of forum registration. Plan on attending the conference and staying overnight to enjoy the BBQ and social.


The conference programme will feature two keynote speakers and concluding respondent.


Prof. Stewart Trost, Professor of Physical Activity and Health, in the School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences and Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation, at Queensland University of Technology, Australia. His research interests include measurement of physical activity and sedentary behaviour, psychosocial and environmental correlates of physical activity behaviour, and community-based interventions to promote physical activity and prevent obesity in children and youth.


Mr. David Passmore is a faculty member in the Department of Health and Human Performance at Dublin City University. His primary research interests focused on the coaching process and coach-athlete interaction and effective coaching practice. Recent research investigated the development pathways of elite coaches working at Olympic level. He has also completed work based research in to talent identification and player development pathways.


Mr Ronan Toomey is a civil servant in the Health and Wellbeing Programme in the Department of Health in Ireland. He works on the team responsible for implementing Healthy Ireland, the Framework for Improved Health and Wellbeing 2013-2025, the Irish Government’s national plan for promoting, improving and protecting the health of the population. Ronan’s specific responsibilities include development and implementation of a national plan for increasing levels of physical activity, development of relationships with local government and the community and voluntary sector and child health and wellbeing policy, including the role of the education sector in health and wellbeing.


Abstracts are being accepted on the following template.



Presenter        Title                 First Name                              Surname         

Email                                                   Telephone

Title of Paper

Authors and Affiliations 



Delivery Format

Oral (10 minutes)

Round Table (30 minutes)

Poster (electronic)


Required Abstract Template

200 words maximum




Purpose of Study

Methodology (Data Collection/Analysis)



Implications for Practice or Implications for Policy


Abstracts due 1st May

Submit to: PEPAYS Ireland at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.




PEPAYS Ireland member wins INTO Bursary

Liam Clohessy, a native of Midleton, Cork and a class teacher in Bunscoil Rinn an Chabhalaigh in Rushbrook Cobh, Cork was announced as a winner of a bursary from the Irish National Teachers’ Organisation (INTO) to help fund education research in Ireland.

Mr. Clohessy’s research (to Doctorate level in the Department of Arts Education and Physical Education at Mary Immaculate College, Limerick) will look at whether or not there are benefits to primary school teachers with additional expertise in physical education (PE) teaching classes other than their own for PE.

The study will observe two teachers who have received additional training in PE while they teach at least two hours of PE to classes other than their own each week. It will take place over a five month period and interviews and focus groups will be conducted with all the teachers involved in order to assess progress.

Every year since 1993 primary teachers undertaking research have been supported by the INTO through the Bursary Scheme. This year, five awards of €1,500 were made. More than 63 applications were submitted in December and judged by an independent assessor from one of the colleges of education.


Invitation to co-chair a research cluster

The Facilitating Learning through Teaching and Coaching cluster would like to invite applications for a cluster co-chair to work alongside the current co-chair (Missy Parker) and with PEPAYS Ireland Co-Directors Ann MacPhail and Elaine Murtagh.  The open call for applications for this position is motivated by expansion of PEPAYS and that co-chairs provide for a diversity of ideas while representing populations from different geographical areas.  Responsibilities would include assistance with programme planning for the annual research forum, development and conduct of cluster research projects, organisation of Let’s Talk seminars, and engagement with the co-directors regarding PEPAYS Ireland;  its role and potential.  If you are interested please contact Missy Parker at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (061) 234674.

The Facilitating Learning through Teaching and Coaching cluster provides an opportunity for discussion about contextual and social issues as they relate to teaching, coaching and learning within the areas of physical education and youth sport.  The cluster’s main themes revolve around teacher education, adapted physical education/activity, outdoor education, and coaching education.

The prominent foci of this cluster are:

  • appropriate enactment of pedagogies and curriculum for all students, regardless of special educational need, within teaching and coaching environments,
  • professional development opportunities across the continuum of teacher and coach education,
  • how teachers and coaches learn to be change agents,
  • encouragement of research and assessment of innovative and inclusive practices related to teaching and coaching, and
  • exploration of the development of physical education and sport opportunities as a means to facilitate inclusion.

Within the cluster are two special “learning groups”; one focused on adapted physical education/activity (hosted by Daniel Tindall This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and the other dedicated to outdoor and adventure education (hosted by Michelle Dillon This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and Tomás Aylward  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.).  If you have interest in either please contact the appropriate person.


Outdoor Learning and Research – Michelle Dillon

“The Outdoor and Adventure Learning” subgroup of the Facilitating Learning through Teaching and Coaching Cluster specifically focuses on research with those teaching and facilitating in, about and for outdoor and adventure settings who are prepared through programmes in vocational and higher education settings, including Physical Education Teacher Education.  Research in this domain might involve investigating areas such as teaching and learning in both natural and urban settings and may involve exploring place based education through varying physical literacy realms.  Other areas include a research agenda which explores how we teach and learn about outdoor, adventure and experiential based experiences with third millennium learners in a meaningful, relevant way.


Announcement of Postgraduate appointment to the Advisory Board of PEPAYS Ireland

Danielle Powell

PEPAYS Ireland is delighted to announce the appointment of Danielle Powell as Postgraduate (PG) Student member of the PEPAYS Ireland Advisory Board. The PG member will connect with both undergraduate and PG student body and strive to represent their interests on the Advisory Board.

Danielle is currently in the second year of her PhD in Dublin City University under the supervision of Dr. Sarahjane Belton and Dr. Johann Issartel. Danielle is conducting a longitudinal research study on the Youth-Physical Activity Towards Health (Y-PATH) intervention programme. Y-PATH is a school based Physical Education (PE) intervention which aims to improve the physical activity  (PA) levels of first year post-primary students through educating them on the importance of PA for health, improving levels of motivation, developing fundamental movement skill (FMS) levels, and generating a supportive environment for PA through working with parents and teachers.  The research team has conducted a two-arm randomised controlled trial in September 2013, in 20 second level schools in the greater Dublin area, where schools were randomly allocated to either implement the one year Y-PATH programme or their usual PE curriculum for the academic year 13/14. Data were collected at three time points: pre-test (September 2013), post-test (May 2014), and retention test (September 2014) and are currently being analysed. Five of these intervention and 5 control schools have continued to implement Y-PATH in their second year PE curriculum, allowing for a more longitudinal evaluation of the intervention effect. Testing will be carried out again in September 2015 to allow us determine the efficacy of the Y-PATH intervention programme as a long term solution to the current inactivity and poor skill attainment levels found in this population.


The Physical Education and Sport Sciences e-Zine

The Physical Education and Sport Sciences e-Zine features articles on current research in the Department of Physical Education and Sport Sciences (PESS) at the University of Limerick, community/translational work that PESS staff/postgraduates are involved in and a news section to celebrate achievements of PESS staff and students. The recent edition of the PESS e-Zine is available at


Childhood Obesity Campaign Update

Just a short note to let you know that the next phase of our Childhood Obesity campaign has gone live this week.

For this phase we are focusing on the association between sleep and obesity. We will also be touching on the amount of screen time children are currently viewing. At present 11% of 3 year olds watch more than three hours of television a day while 16% have a television or electronic device in their bedroom.

The campaign will feature on TV and radio and will be supported by digital and press. We have created new digital content including videos from Dr Fiona Healy of Temple Street Children's Hospital and parenting expert Dr John Sharry. We also have downloadable tips and tools for parents including a sleep diary and reward chart to help create a better bedtime routine.

Here is a link to our Its Bedtime hub, and our Tools page were you can find the sleep diary and reward chart.

The twitter hashtag for the campaign is #itsbedtime and this also features on our TV and radio advertising.

If you would like to get more involved or if there is something specific you would like to discuss please do not hesitate to contact Andrew Castles This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Conferences and Events

DEDIPAC 2015                        Milan, 14 May, 2015 Further details for this event can be found at the conference website:


ISBNPA 2015              Edinburgh, 3 – 6 June, 2015

Further details for this event can be found at the conference website:


1st International Conference on Transport and Health                 London, 6 – 8 July, 2015

Further details for this event can be found at the conference website:


HEPA Europe              Istanbul, 7 – 9 October, 2015

The 11th annual meeting and 6th conference of HEPA Europe will take place on 7-9 October 2015 in Istanbul, Turkey.


Notre Dame Online Course

Here’s an online course that may be of interest to some of you. It’s described as a non-technical introduction to statistics. It is Notre Dame after all!


Recent Publications, Presentations and Conference Abstracts


Ní Chróinín, D. & O'Sullivan, M. (2014): From initial teacher education through induction and beyond: a longitudinal study of primary teacher beliefs, Irish Educational Studies, 33(4), 451-466

Murtagh EM, Murphy MH, Murphy NM, Woods, C Nevill AM, Lane A (2015) Prevalence and Correlates of Physical Inactivity in Community-Dwelling Older Adults in Ireland. PLoS ONE 10(2): e0118293. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0118293

Martin, R. & Murtagh, E. M. 2015. An intervention to improve the physical activity levels of children: Design and rationale of the ‘Active Classrooms’ cluster randomised controlled trial. Contemporary Clinical Trials, 41, 180-191.

Murtagh, E.M., Nichols, L., Mohammed, M.A., Holder, R., Nevill, A.M., Murphy, M.H., 2015. The effect of walking on risk factors for cardiovascular disease: An updated systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised control trials. Prev. Med. 72:34-43.

Patton, K., Parker, M., & Tannehill, D. (2015). Core features of effective professional development.  National Association of Secondary Principals Bulletin (NASSP Bulletin),

DOI: DOI: 10.1177/0192636515576040

Parker, M., Patton, K., & Sinclair, C. (2015). “I took this picture because…”: Teachers’ depictions and descriptions of change. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy. DOI: 101080/17408989.2015.1017452

Patton, K. & Parker, M. (2015). ‘I learned more at lunchtime”: Guideposts for reimagining professional development. Journal of Physical Education, Recreation, and Dance, 86(1),23- 29.

Tindall, D., MacDonald, W., Carroll, E. & Moody, B. (2015) Pre-service teachers’ attitudes towards children with disabilities: An Irish perspective. European Physical Education Review May 2015 21: 206-221, first published on November 6, 2014 doi:10.1177/1356336X14556861

Young, A-M. & MacPhail, A. (2015) Standing on the periphery: Cooperating teachers’ perceptions and responses to the role of supervision European Physical Education Review May 2015 21: 222-237, first published on November 16, 2014 doi:10.1177/1356336X14557582

Ní Chroínín, D., Fletcher, T. & O’Sullivan, M (2015) Pedagogies for meaning-making in Physical Education Teacher Education:  Learning to teach fundamental motor skills, Physical Education and Health Canada, Banff, April 30th- May 2nd.


Conference abstracts

R Bowles, D NiChroinin and E Murtagh (2014) Understanding the process of physical activity promotion in primary schools: Empowerment and collaboration through the ‘Active School Flag’ initiative. Children’s Research Network for Ireland and Northern Ireland Conference. Dublin: 10th Dec



Tannehill, D., Parker, M., MacPhail, A., Moody, B., & Tindall, D. (2015).  Self-study in Physical Education Teacher Education. Presentation at the Society of Health and Physical Educators, Seattle, WA, USA.

Parker, M. & Patton, K. (2015). Physical Education Teacher Education Communities of Practice: Expectations and Motives. Presentation at the Society of Health and Physical Educators, Seattle, WA, USA.

Berei, C., Pratt, E., Parker, M., Liang, T.J., Shephard, K., Nampai, U., Neamphoka, G., &  Akbar, A. (2015). Motives & Guideposts and Roadblocks to Career-Long Scholarly Engagement of PETE Faculty. Presentation at the Society of Health and Physical Educators, Seattle, WA, USA.

McMullen, J., &  Deutsch, S. (2015). Achieving the ‘Aha' Moment: Seeing is Believing in PETE. Presentation at the Society of Health and Physical Educators, Seattle, WA, USA 

McCarthy, U., Ralph, A.M., & Tindall, D. (2015).  St. Patrick Has Arrived: Hurling Through Cultural Studies Curriculum Model. Presentation at the Society of Health and Physical Educators, Seattle, WA, USA.

Fletcher, T, Ní Chróinín, D. & O’Sullivan, M. (2015) Critical friendship and its role in supporting pedagogical innovation in pre-service teacher education, American Educational Research Association, Chicago, April 16th- 20th 2015.

Ní Chroínín, D., Fletcher, T. & O’Sullivan, M (2015) Developing and Articulating Pedagogies for Meaning-making in Physical Education Teacher Education, American Educational Research Association, Chicago, April 16th- 20th 2015.


Grants and Funding

NiChroinin, D., Parker, M., & O’Sullivan, M.  (2015). Development of an Ireland-UK Self-Study Research Network of Physical Education and Coach Educators. The Irish Research Council. €5998.

NiChroinin, D., (2015) Pedagogies of Meaning-making in PE, Irish Research Council New Foundations, €4730


Call for Papers from Biomed International

BioMed Research International (formerly titled Journal of Biomedicine and Biotechnology) – special issue on "Exercise Training for Prevention and Rehabilitation of Lifestyle-Related Chronic Cardiopulmonary and Metabolic Diseases”. deadline for submission is May 22, 2015


Let’s Talk Series

On Wednesday 25th March, University College Cork organised the first ‘Let’s Talk Seminar’ for 2015 as part of the Active Schools Active Communities research cluster. Members of the Project Spraoi research team from Cork Institute of Technology (Dr. Tara Coppinger and Dr. Con Burns et al.) gave a comprehensive overview of their baseline findings, specifically in terms of childhood physical activity participation, fundamental movement skill proficiency and nutrition awareness. Following this Project Spraoi workshop, two selected articles were discussed by participants as part of a round table format discussion. The ‘Let’s Talk Seminar’ proved to be a very beneficial exercise for the AS-AC research cluster and feedback has been extremely positive.

The Facilitating Learning through Teaching and Coaching cluster has conducted two successful Let’s Talk Seminars.  The first, facilitated by Ian Sherwin, using the 2009 Jean Côté and Wade Gilbert article, An integrative definition of coaching effectiveness and expertise, (International Journal of Sports Science and Coaching, 4(3), 307-323), focused on effective coaching.  The second, using the Handbook on Classroom Management [E.T. Emmer & E.J. Sabornie (Eds.), New York: Routledge] chapter authored by Donetta Cothran and Pamela Hodges Kulinna on Classroom Management in Physical Education, was facilitated by Dr. Cothran herself during a recent visit as an external examiner to UL.  Both seminar engendered discussion from various locations throughout Ireland and abroad.  Please look for future seminars and please contact either Missy or Daniel if you have a seminar idea to share. 



University of Limerick

0.5 FTE Lecturer below the bar Sports Nutrition

Applied Sport Experimental Officer

Stirling University

The teaching would be mainly on the Postgraduate programmes in coaching.

Link for the post and how to apply is below:

Our Mission

To use high-quality, multi-disciplinary and multi-entity research to shape, influence and inform policy and practice relating to advancing the health and well-being of populations in the areas of physical education, sport, physical activity and health.

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