Perceived safety of the learning environment and associated anxiety factors during COVID-19 in Ghana: Evidence from practice-based physical education curriculum
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Eur J Investig Health Psychol Educ. 2022 Jan 1;12(1):28-41. doi: 10.3390/ejihpe12010003.
The COVID-19 outbreak has resulted in a rapid migration to other teaching delivery models and instructional practices in educational institutions. This study examined the perceived safety of the learning environment and associated anxiety factors among physical education students amid COVID-19. Using a cross-sectional design, a deliberately and conveniently selected sample of 638 students at a public university in Ghana completed a self-developed questionnaire. Frequency counts, percentages and ordered logistic regression were used to analyze the data. Study results showed that students perceived the practice class environment as unsafe, with self-reported moderate to high levels of anxiety during their practice classes. The results of the ordered logistic regression revealed that various factors such as age, COVID-19 information platforms, certainty about personal safety, and adequacy of preparedness to handle COVID-19 cases were associated with anxiety. The study concluded that an unsafe hands-on learning environment in physical education increases students’ anxiety levels. Academic departments/units should provide periodic interventions (e.g., positive self-talk, mental rehearsal, cognitive restructuring) and student counseling services amid the ongoing pandemic to help moderate situation-specific anxiety. In addition, key to managing student anxiety is the provision of a safe and supportive school environment, including the provision of adequate personal protective equipment for practical lessons by school authorities.
PMID:35049532 | DOI: 10.3390/ejihpe12010003