Mark J G Holland

University of Birmingham, Birmingham, England, United Kingdom

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Publications (15)17.17 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Purpose: This paper aims to evaluate the perceived efficacy of outdoor groupwork skills programmes for undergraduate and postgraduate students, and the factors that influence its success. It also illustrates the use of Kirkpatrick’s (1994) 4-level model of training evaluation as a framework for qualitative investigation of learning and transfer, from the perspective of key stakeholders. Design/methodology/approach: Over 24 hours of recorded data were collected using a video diary room, one-to-one interviews and focus group discussions. Participants were current students (n = 66), alumni (n = 12), outdoor education instructors (n = 6) and academic staff (n = 5). The data were transcribed, and then analysed by conducting conventional content analysis. Prolonged engagement, triangulation, peer debriefing and referential adequacy were used to establish the trustworthiness and reliability of the analyses. Findings: Outdoor groupwork skills programmes were widely viewed as being effective for developing interpersonal skills, attitudes and knowledge that were then further developed and applied during degree courses and later in the workplace. Four of the main perceived benefits were increased social integration amongst peers, academic success, personal development and employability. A range of psychological and environmental factors were reported to influence the extent of skill development and transfer, and are presented in the Model for Optimal Learning and Transfer. Practical implications: This study supports outdoor groupwork skills programmes as an effective method of groupwork skills training during higher education, and offers recommendations for promoting learning and transfer following training courses. Originality/value: This is the first study to systematically evaluate the long-term impact of outdoor groupwork skills programmes in higher education. A novel methodological approach is also demonstrated, which can be replicated in other contexts of training evaluation.
    01/2015; 39(2):105-121. DOI:10.1108/EJTD-06-2014-0046
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of the present study was to develop and provide psychometric evidence in support of the Groupwork Skills Questionnaire (GSQ) for measuring task and interpersonal groupwork skills. A 46-item version of the GSQ was initially completed by 672 University students. The number of items was reduced to 15 following exploratory factor analyses and a two-factor model consisting of task and interpersonal groupwork skills was revealed. Confirmatory factor analyses with model re-specification on new data (n = 275 students) established that the best fitting model consisted of 10 items and the same 2 factors (task and interpersonal). Concurrent validity of the GSQ was then determined with 145 participants by demonstrating significant relationships (p < .05) with attitudes towards groupwork and groupwork self-efficacy. Test-retest reliability was examined over a one week interval. Overall, the GSQ demonstrates good validity and reliability, and has potential for both research and pedagogical application.
    Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education 09/2014; In Press. DOI:10.1080/02602938.2014.957642 · 0.84 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Outdoor adventure education courses are used in higher education to develop transferable skills such as groupwork and problem-solving skills. There is a need for exploratory investigation into students’ perceptions of this experience. This study aimed to develop an innovative qualitative data collection method, and to use it to explore students’ perceived learning processes and developmental outcomes when taking part in an outdoor groupwork skills course. Participants (n = 40) were undergraduate engineering students who were taking part in the 3 day residential course as part of their degree course. Students’ experiences were captured whilst immersed in the course, using a semi-structured video diary room. Participants entered the diary room at different time points throughout the course and responded to openended questions. Following a thematic analysis, students were found to arrive on the course with mixed feelings towards groupwork and expected learning outcomes. Activities were enjoyable yet challenging, revealing students’ weaknesses and demanding a range of skills and coping methods. The outdoor environment added novelty, risk and natural consequences. Students reported developing a range of skills in groupwork, adaptability, persistence, planning, problem-solving, time-management, communication, leadership, cooperation, group reflection and team spirit, as well as benefits to physical activity, self-confidence, self-awareness, peer and staff relationships and internationalisation. These findings provide a base for future investigation into the long-term impact on student development and skill transfer. The semi-structured video diary room yielded rich data, contributing to the literature by offering a simple, yet effective, qualitative research method that can be implemented in a variety of contexts
    Higher Education 01/2014; 67(1):105-121. DOI:10.1007/s10734-013-9645-5 · 1.06 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: This is a guide to using the Groupwork Skills Questionnaire (GSQ) in Higher Education as part of the Birmingham Evaluating Skills Transfer (BEST) Project. For more information, see www.bestskills.co.uk.
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    The Sixth International Outdoor Education Research Conference, University of Otago, New Zealand; 11/2013
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    Sam J Cooley · Jennifer Cumming · Mark J. G Holland · Victoria E Burns
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    ABSTRACT: Background Students working in cross-cultural groups can experience challenges, including different language skills and understanding of interpersonal behaviours. Without appropriate skills to manage these differences, cultural isolation can occur if people choose to primarily work with those of similar backgrounds. This study explores the benefit to multicultural groupwork following an outdoor education teambuilding course for higher education students. Method Students took part in a 3-day residential course, which aimed to develop groupwork skills through group problem-solving activities such as raft building, ropes courses and orienteering. Validated questionnaires (n = 312) were used to measure changes in groupwork skills, attitude towards multicultural groupwork and sense of belonging. Qualitative data was obtained during the course using a semi-structured video diary room (n = 49) and afterwards via focus group interviews (n = 16). Results International students initially had a lower sense of belonging to the university; however, this perception was significantly improved post-course. Regardless of their background, students found the course to be a valuable opportunity for experiencing multicultural groupwork and reported developing their groupwork skills, cross-cultural friendships and their ability to function effectively within multicultural groups. International students discussed at length how cultural backgrounds can influence how people work in groups. In contrast, although domestic students positively reflected on their international experience, they showed a less nuanced understanding of cultural differences in groupwork. Conclusion The topic of internationalisation is an important area for future research in outdoor education. Our findings demonstrate that outdoor groupwork skill courses can help develop international understanding in higher education, and suggest that more explicit discussion and reflection on these issues may be beneficial to enhance future courses.
    The sixth International Outdoor Education Research Conference, University of Otago, New Zealand; 11/2013
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this investigation was to evaluate the effectiveness of a mental skills training (MST) program for male youth elite rugby athletes. Three focus groups were held with 21 under-16 male rugby athletes and four male coaches involved in the MST program to examine the quality of service delivery, athlete responses to the MST program, the mental qualities used by athletes, and its perceived influence on athlete performance. Following inductive-deductive content analysis, 40 subcategories and 16 categories emerged. Participants believed the MST program to be an interactive, well-planned program that increased athlete understanding of MST methods and awareness of MST strategies to manage rugby performance. Athletes thought it important that their coaches develop a greater knowledge and understanding of MST methods. Finally, athletes perceived the MST skills and methods they learnt through the MST program were transferable to other sports and areas of their life outside of rugby (e.g., school).
    Sport Psychologist 09/2013; · 0.93 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Drawing from the experiences of the authors in developing, conducting, and evaluating sport psychology interventions, several considerations are highlighted and recommendations offered for effective psychometric assessment. Using the Test of Performance Strategies (TOPS; Thomas, Murphy, & Hardy, 1999) as a working example, opportunities for bias to undermine a measure’s validity and reliability are discussed with reference to a respondent’s four cognitive processes: (a) comprehension, (b) retrieval, (c) decision-making, and (d) response generation. Further threats to an instrument’s psychometric properties are highlighted in the form of demand characteristics athletes perceive in the environment. With these concerns in mind, several recommendations are made relating to the process of questionnaire administration and how possible compromises to the psychometric soundness of measures used in applied interventions can be minimized.
    Sport Psychologist 01/2012; 26:1-15. · 0.93 Impact Factor
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    Charlotte Woodcock · Mark J G Holland · Joan L Duda · Jennifer Cumming
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of the current study was to extend previous research by Holland and col-leagues (2010) into the required psychological qualities of young talented rugby players by considering the perceptions and supportive role of influential others. Perceptions of players' parents (n = 17), coaches (n = 7), and sport administra-tion staff (SAS; n = 2) were explored through focus group discussions. Findings show that these influential others considered the same 11 higher order themes for psychological qualities previously identified as desirable by players. Their views on how they assisted in developing these player psychological qualities were classi-fied into three higher-order themes, namely progressive development, professional environment, and performance environment. Specific behaviors contributing to each context and deemed helpful by influential others were discussed in terms of ecological systems theory (Bonfenbrenner, 1977). Recommendations for future research and applied implications for consultants are subsequently offered. At the highest level of sport, performance success is consistently differenti-ated by an athlete's display of psychological qualities and effective use of mental techniques (Gould, Eklund, & Jackson, 1992). A number of in-depth qualitative studies have explored these psychological determinants of sporting success through interviews and questionnaires with performers at the pinnacle of their careers including Olympic and World Champions (Durand-Bush & Salmela, 2002; Gould, Dieffenbach, & Moffett, 2002; Orlick & Partington, 1988). Recollections made by elite athletes about the development of these psychological attributes and related mental techniques have furthered our understanding of the psychological dimensions of optimal performance. However, the accuracy of such self-reports are threat-ened by memory-decay over time. Current knowledge, beliefs, and expectations can distort memories and errors in retrieval can lead to biases in recall (Schacter, 1999). Although athletes have not indicated difficulties in recollecting meaningful
    Sport Psychologist 12/2011; 25(4):411-443. · 0.93 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The Test of Performance Strategies (TOPS, Thomas, Murphy, and Hardy, 1999) is one of the most popular questionnaires in sport psychology to measure athletes’ mental skill use. However, doubts concerning the instrument’s appropriateness for adolescent athletes have limited its use within this population (Lane, Harwood, Terry, & Karageorghis, 2004). Moreover, the stability of the TOPS has yet to be discerned despite it being used to establish pre to post intervention changes in mental skill use. The aim of the present study was to re-examine and validate the TOPS to measure psychological skill use over a season long mental skills training program for adolescent athletes. Following a needs analysis of the target population (Holland, Woodcock, Cumming, & Duda, 2010), 469 British athletes (321 male and 148 female, M age = 15.36 yrs, SD = 1.22) completed a reduced 10 subscale version of the TOPS. The structural validity of a practice and a competition 5-factor model was tested using confirmatory factor analysis (CFA). For practice, goodness of fit indices failed to reach acceptable cut-off limits suggesting a poor model fit (chi^2(160) = 649.89, p > .001, SRMA = .11, TLI = .80, CFI = .83, RMSEA = .08). For competition, only adequate support was found in the case of indices reflecting comparative fit to the baseline model signifying potential for improvement (chi^2(160) = 411.00, p > .001, SRMA = 0.06, TLI = 0.90, CFI = 0.92, RMSEA = 0.06). Both models were respecified and acceptable fit emerged. Gender and competitive level differences in subscale scores were examined. The predictive validity of the modified measure of psychological skill use was determined in terms of competitive trait anxiety and confidence. Finally test-retest reliability was assessed on a subsample of 29 athletes over 3 months. All subscales revealed poor to moderate intraclass correlation coefficients ranging from .25 to .70. Findings are discussed in relation to previous literature exploring the psychometric properties of the TOPS.
    Journal of sport & exercise psychology 06/2010; · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The Athlete Burnout Questionnaire (ABQ; Raedeke & Smith, 2001) has emerged as a valid and reliable theory based tool to measure burnout in adult-aged athletes. However, the psychometric properties of the ABQ have yet to be extensively tested within youth sport populations. The present study tested the validity and reliability of the 15 item ABQ with 445 young British athletes (322 males and 152 females; M age = 15.36, SD 1.23 years). The internal consistency was examined for each of the three subscales, emotional/physical exhaustion (EPE), sport devaluation (SD) and reduced sense of accomplishment (RA), resulting in alpha coefficients of between .78 and .89. Preliminary confirmatory factor analysis indicated the model for the ABQ was an adequate fit (chi^2 = 361.99, RMSEA = .08, SRMR = .06, CFI = .92, TLI = .90). Modification indices suggested that the model could be improved if two items within the reduced accomplishment subscale be allowed to covary. A re-specified model showed a greater model fit (chi^2 = 266.91, RMSEA = .07, SRMR = .05, CFI = .95, TLI = .94) and was utilised in further analysis. Investigations by Raedeke and Smith (2001) and Price and Weiss (2000) suggested that high levels of trait anxiety predispose athletes to the risk of burnout. To establish convergent validity, all athletes also completed the 17 item revised Competitive State Anxiety Inventory (CSAI-2R; Cox, Martens & Russell, 2003). Analysis for the present study indicated Cronbach alpha coefficients of between .61 and .78 for the CSAI-2R. Bivariate correlations indicated that the subscales of the ABQ and CSAI-2R were related. As expected, intensity measures of somatic anxiety (EPE r = .25, p < .01; SD r = .17, p < .01; RA r = .16, p = .01) and cognitive anxiety (EPE r = .22, p < .01; SD r = .10, p < .05; RA r = .14, p < .01) positively correlated and self-confidence negatively correlated (SD r = −0.16, p < .01; RA r = −.16, p < .01) with ABQ subscales. In conclusion, preliminary results indicated the ABQ to be a valid measure of burnout in youth athlete populations.
    Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology 01/2010; 32:S218-S219. · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    Mark J.G. Holland · Charlotte Woodcock · Jennifer Cumming · Joan L. Duda
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    ABSTRACT: Research on the psychological characteristics of elite performers has primarily focused on Olympic and World champions; however, the mental attributes of young developing and talented athletes have received less attention. Addressing this, the current study had two aims: (a) to examine the perceptions held by youth athletes regarding the mental qualities they need to facilitate their development and (b) to investigate the mental techniques used by these athletes. Forty-three male youth rugby players participated in a series of focus groups. Inductive content analysis revealed 11 categories of psychological qualities, including enjoyment, responsibility, adaptability, squad spirit, self-aware learner, determination, confidence, optimal performance state, game sense, attentional focus, and mental toughness. Techniques employed included personal performance strategies, reflection on action, taking advantage of a supportive climate, and team-based strategies. Findings are discussed in relation to their implications for mental skills training program development and evaluation in the case of youth elite team sport athletes.
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    ABSTRACT: The Athlete Burnout Questionnaire (ABQ; Raedeke & Smith, 2001) has emerged as a valid and reliable theory based tool to measure burnout in adult-aged athletes. However, the psychometric properties of the ABQ have yet to be extensively tested within youth sport populations. The present study tested the validity and reliability of the 15 item ABQ with 445 young British athletes (322 males and 152 females; M age = 15.36, SD 1.23 years). The internal consistency was examined for each of the three subscales, emotional/physical exhaustion (EPE), sport devaluation (SD) and reduced sense of accomplishment (RA), resulting in alpha coefficients of between .78 and .89. Preliminary confirmatory factor analysis indicated the model for the ABQ was an adequate fit (chi^2 = 361.99, RMSEA = .08, SRMR = .06, CFI = .92, TLI = .90). Modification indices suggested that the model could be improved if two items within the reduced accomplishment subscale be allowed to covary. A re-specified model showed a greater model fit (chi^2 = 266.91, RMSEA = .07, SRMR = .05, CFI = .95, TLI = .94) and was utilised in further analysis. Investigations by Raedeke and Smith (2001) and Price and Weiss (2000) suggested that high levels of trait anxiety predispose athletes to the risk of burnout. To establish convergent validity, all athletes also completed the 17 item revised Competitive State Anxiety Inventory (CSAI-2R; Cox, Martens & Russell, 2003). Analysis for the present study indicated Cronbach alpha coefficients of between .61 and .78 for the CSAI-2R. Bivariate correlations indicated that the subscales of the ABQ and CSAI-2R were related. As expected, intensity measures of somatic anxiety (EPE r = .25, p < .01; SD r = .17, p < .01; RA r = .16, p = .01) and cognitive anxiety (EPE r = .22, p < .01; SD r = .10, p < .05; RA r = .14, p < .01) positively correlated and self-confidence negatively correlated (SD r = −0.16, p < .01; RA r = −.16, p < .01) with ABQ subscales. In conclusion, preliminary results indicated the ABQ to be a valid measure of burnout in youth athlete populations.
    Journal of sport & exercise psychology 01/2010; · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Grounded in Self Determination Theory (Deci & Ryan, 1985), the Behavioral Regulation in Sport Questionnaire (Lonsdale, Hodge & Rose, 2008) measures 6 motivation regulations (Intrinsic Motivation (IM), Integrated Regulation (IG), Identified Regulation (ID), Introjected Regulation (IJ), Extrinsic Regulation (ER), and Amotivation (AM)) assumed to be relevant to sport participants. The purpose of the current study was to examine the validity and reliability of a 24 item version of the BRSQ (with IM measured as a uni- dimensional concept; Deci & Ryan, 1985) within a youth population. Participants were male (n = 431) and female (n = 152) athletes (M age = 15.4, SD = 1.23) from a range of team and individual sports. Confirmatory factor analysis revealed a poor model fit to the hypothesized factor structure (chi^2 (237) = 902.09, RMSEA = .07, SRMR = .07, CFI = .91, TLI = .89). Modification indices suggested the removal of two items, one from the IG and the IJ subscales. A re-specified model showed improvement (chi^2 (191) = 557.37, RMSEA = .06, SRMR = .06, CFI = .95, TLI = .94) and was adopted for subsequent analyses. Internal reliability was found to be acceptable for all 6 subscales with Cronbach alphas from .74 to .86. Convergent validity was assessed using a subsample of 402 participants who completed the general self subscale of the Self-Description Questionnaire II (Marsh, 1990). As hypothesized (Deci & Ryan, 2000), bivariate correlations showed a small but significant positive association between self-worth and IM (r = .13, p = .01) and small negative associations with ER (r = −.15, p <.01) and AM (r = −.14, p < .01). Finally, 39 participants completed the BRSQ on 2 separate occasions 4 months apart to assess test-retest reliability. Interclass correlations revealed moderate reliabilities with lower test-retest reliability for the AM subscales (IM = .60, IG = .65, ID = .73, IJ = .66, ER = .59, Am = .41). In conclusion, this research offers some support for the psychometric properties of a 22 item BRSQ in the case of youth sport participants.
    Journal of Sport and Exercise Psychology 01/2010; 32:S175-S176. · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    Charlotte Woodcock · Mark J G Holland · Joan L Duda · Jennifer Cumming
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    ABSTRACT: This article may be used for research, teaching, and private study purposes. Any substantial or systematic reproduction, redistribution, reselling, loan, sub-licensing, systematic supply, or distribution in any form to anyone is expressly forbidden. The publisher does not give any warranty express or implied or make any representation that the contents will be complete or accurate or up to date. The accuracy of any instructions, formulae, and drug doses should be independently verified with primary sources. The publisher shall not be liable for any loss, actions, claims, proceedings, demand, or costs or damages whatsoever or howsoever caused arising directly or indirectly in connection with or arising out of the use of this material. ABSTRACTS SYMPOSIA
    Journal of Sports Sciences 01/2008; 26(2):S42. · 2.10 Impact Factor