The need for ‘representative task design’ in evaluating efficacy of skills tests in sport : a comment on Russell, Benton and Kingsley (2010)

Vilar, Luis, Araujo, Duarte, Davids, Keith, & Renshaw, Ian (2012) The need for ‘representative task design’ in evaluating efficacy of skills tests in sport : a comment on Russell, Benton and Kingsley (2010). Journal of Sports Sciences, 30(16), pp. 1727-1730.

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Russell, Benton and Kingsley (2010) recently suggested a new association football test comprising three different tasks for the evaluation of players' passing, dribbling and shooting skills. Their stated intention was to enhance ‘ecological validity’ of current association football skills tests allowing generalisation of results from the new protocols to performance constraints that were ‘representative’ of experiences during competitive game situations. However, in this comment we raise some concerns with their use of the term ‘ecological validity’ to allude to aspects of ‘representative task design’. We propose that in their paper the authors confused understanding of environmental properties, performance achievement and generalisability of the test and its outcomes. Here, we argue that the tests designed by Russell and colleagues did not include critical sources of environmental information, such as the active role of opponents, which players typically use to organise their actions during performance. Static tasks which are not representative of the competitive performance environment may lead to different emerging patterns of movement organisation and performance outcomes, failing to effectively evaluate skills performance in sport.

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12 citations in Scopus
9 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 58596
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: performance evaluation tests, representative task design,, skill performance, perception-action coupling,
DOI: 10.1080/02640414.2012.679674
ISSN: 1466-447X
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > PSYCHOLOGY AND COGNITIVE SCIENCES (170000) > PSYCHOLOGY (170100) > Sport and Exercise Psychology (170114)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Exercise & Nutrition Sciences
Deposited On: 24 Mar 2013 23:13
Last Modified: 12 Jun 2013 15:39

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