Graduation Term


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


School of Kinesiology and Recreation

Committee Chair

Mary Henninger


The purpose of this study was to investigate the relationship between student physical activity levels and how they affect self-esteem. The study analyzed the differences in participants’ self-esteem on days they had PE versus days they had Encore class (i.e. journalism, drama, art, global awareness, stem, and music). Participants were 25 students in an intact sixth-grade PE class (10 girls, 15 boys) at a middle school in a suburb of Chicago. Data were collected from two sources, pedometers recording number of steps taken daily and scores on Harter’s Global Self-Worth Scale, a measure of self-esteem. Data were analyzed using SPSS to determine a) average number of steps taken for each participant on PE days, b) number of steps taken by each participant on non-PE days, c) average global self-worth on PE days, d) average global self-worth scores on non-PE days, e) the degree of relationship between the number of steps taken and global self-worth on PE and Encore days, and f) the degree of difference between average steps taken on PE versus non-PE days. Findings indicate that students tend to take more steps on PE days than on Encore days. While students participating in PE do tend to rate their global self-worth slightly higher than when they participate in Encore days, there is no statistically significant relationship between steps taken and global self-worth.


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