Like Tweedledum and Tweedledee? Influence of model similarity on efficacy, acquisition of concepts and performance of skills in cricket among middle school children
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This dissertation probes, through a blending of qualitative and quantitative inquiry, the influence of a model’s ethnic similarity to observers on the attentional; and motivational processes of young observers. It examines their concept and skill acquisition as well as their performance on the demonstrated (novel) motor skill and any differential in efficacy, skill acquisition and performance under similar or dissimilar conditions. This inquiry aims to establish whether viewing a similar model (of ethnicity similar to the observer) boosts self-efficacious feelings, expectancy and therefore confidence to perform and as a consequence, performance. This is then compared with actual performance and recall of concepts. The probe follows the line of scholarship and research literature that has comprehensively examined the significant influences of similar and dissimilar model characteristics on learning of motor skills by observers. This has often focused on gender, age, and model status and skill level. In the similarity studies, the feature of ethnicity has not been given as much focus as it should get. This has mainly been due to the controversy that the specter of ethnicity and race investigation evokes in the American society. Building on previous studies, this dissertation explores the impact of this salient model feature. This feature has not been investigated with as much intensity as compared to the other features such as age, gender, and skill level in literature. And all the later have been found to exert significant influences on acquisition of modeled motor skills.