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College of Education

Faculty and Staff

Ali S. Brian, Ph.D.

Title: Associate Professor
Department: Physical Education
College of Education
Phone: 803-777-3101
Office: Blatt PE Center 218F 

Ali S. Brian, Ph.D.


Ali Brian is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Physical Education. Her teaching includes Adapted Physical Education, Elementary Physical Education Methods, Motor Development, Assessment and Instrumentation and Research Methods. Helping young children and adolescents with and without disabilities learn to be competent movers and to improve their perceptions of movement competence is something that Brian is passionate about. As a consultant with the Institute of Movement Studies for Individuals with Visual Impairments, Brian has traveled throughout the world assessing and evaluating the perceived and actual motor competence, physical activity, and health-related fitness levels of individuals with visual impairments in order to develop targeted intervention strategies. Additionally, as an investigator with the Yvonne and Schuyler Moore Child Development Research Center and as a member of the Research Consortium of Children and Families, her research also focuses upon developing targeted intervention strategies for children enrolled in Head Start Early Learning and Knowledge Centers as well as rural, title one early childhood centers. Brian’s work has been published in Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport, Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, PLoS ONE, Journal of Science and Medicine and Sport, Journal of Motor Learning and Development, and others. Brian has over 90 national and international presentations regarding Adapted Physical Education, Physical Education, Motor Development, and Physical Activity.


Ph.D., Kinesiology with an emphasis in Physical Education Teacher Education with concentrations in motor development and adapted physical education, Ohio State University

M.S., University of Dayton

B.S., Notre Dame College

Research and Expertise

Brian’s research interests are promoting perceived and actual motor skill development of preschool children with and without disabilities in socio-economically disadvantaged environments through various universally-designed intervention strategies that include providing professional development, coaching, and support for teachers and parents. In addition to her recent work with Head Start Early Learning and Knowledge Centers and rural, title I early childhood centers, Brian’s current research also includes physical education teacher- and parent-assisted perceived and gross motor skill intervention strategies for children with visual impairments and blindness.  Finally, Brian’s research also explores and assesses underlying mechanisms of physical activity, obesity, and physical literacy including associations among gross motor competence, perceived motor competence and physical activity for young children with and without disabilities (including visual impairments and blindness).

Selected Publications

Invited Book Chapters
Brian, A.,
Haibach, P., & Lieberman, L. J. (2017). Promoting motor skills for children with visual impairments in inclusive settings: An international perspective. In M. Giese (Ed.), The missing link: Inclusive Physical Education out of the International Perspective from Adapted Physical Education, 288-298, Weinheim, Germany: Beltz.

Brian, A., & Goodway, J. D. (in press). Kinesthetic learning. In B. Frey (Ed.), The SAGE Encyclopedia of Educational Research, Measurement, and Evaluation, Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Goodway, J. D., Brian, A., Bardid, F., & STaunton, S. (in press). Gross motor delay in children with intellectual and developmental disabilities. In E. Braaten (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Intellectual and Developmental Disorders, Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Brian, A., & Lehwald, H. (2017). Softball. In P. Ward & H. Lehwald (Eds.). Effective physical education content and instruction: An evidence-based and teacher-tested approach, Champaign, IL: Human Kinetics.

Goodway, J. D., Brian, A., Chang, S. & Park, S. (2014). Methodological approaches to evaluate motor skill development, physical activity, health-related fitness, and perceived motor competence in young children. In Saracho (Ed.), Handbook of Research Methods in Early Childhood Education, 349-391, Charlotte, NC: Information Age.


Journal Articles
Brian, A.,
& Taunton, S. (in revision). Effectiveness of intervention varies on instructor and pedagogical strategy. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy.

Brian, A., Taunton, S., Lieberman, L., Haibach-Beach, P., Foley, J., & Santarossa, S. (in revision). The validity and reliability of the Test of Gross Motor Development-3 for children with visual impairments. Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly.

Lieberman, L., Brian, A., & Grenier, M. (in revision). The Lieberman-Brian Inclusion Rating Scale for Physical Education: A Delphi investigation, European Physical Education Review

Taunton, S, Brian, A., & True, L. (in revision). Universally designed motor skill intervention for children with and without disabilities. Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities

Brian, A., Goodway, J., Logan, J., & Sutherland, S. (in revision). SKIPing with Head Start teachers: Influence of T-SKIP on object control skills. Research Quarterly for Exercise and Sport,

Haegele, J., Brian, A., & Lieberman, L. (in press). Social Cognitive Theory determinants of physical activity among adults with visual impairments. Journal of Developmental and Physical Disabilities

Brian, A., Bardid, F., Barnett, L., Deconinck, F., & Goodway, J. D., & Lenoir, M. (in press). Cross-cultural differences between Belgian and American youth in perceived and actual motor skills. Journal of Motor Learning and Development

Brian, A., Haegele, J., Nesbitt, D., Lieberman, L., Bostick, L., Taunton, S., & Stodden, D. (in press). Perceptions of motor competence for children with and without visual impairments. Journal of Visual Impairments and Blindness

Taunton, S., Brian, A., & Monsma, E. V. (in press). Developing intrinsic motivation towards beep baseball through physical education, Palaestra, 31(4),

Brian, A., Lieberman, L., Grenier, M., Egan, C., & Taunton, S. (in press). 50 million strong for all: Universally designed CSPAP. Journal of Physical Education, Health, Recreation, and Dance.

Haegele, J., Brian, A., & Wolf, D. (2017). Accuracy of the Fitbit Zip for measuring steps for adolescents with visual impairments. Adapted Physical Activity Quarterly, 34, 195-200.

De Meester, A., Stodden, D. F., Goodway, J. D., True, L., Brian, A., Ferkel, R., Goodway, J. D., & Haerens, L. (2017). Identification of a motor competence proficiency barrier for meeting physical activity guidelines. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport, advance online publication, doi: 10.1016/j.jsams.2017.05.007.

True, L., Brian, A., Goodway, J. D., & Stodden, D. (2017). Relationships among product and process-oriented measures of motor skill competence and perceived competence in boys and girls. Journal of Motor Learning and Development, advance online publication, doi: 10.1123/jmld.2016-0042

Brian, A., Bostick, L., Taunton, S., & Pennell, A. (2017). Construct validity and reliability for the Test of Perceived Motor Competence for Children with Visual Impairments. British Journal of Visual Impairment, 35(2), 113-119.

Brian, A., & Haegele, J. (2017). Gopher FITstep pro accuracy when measuring steps and moderate-to-vigorous physical activity. Acta Gymnica, Advance Online Publication. doi: 10.5507/ag.2017.006

Brian, A., Goodway, J. D., Logan, J. A., & Sutherland, S. (2017). SKIPing with teachers: An early years motor skill intervention. Physical Education and Sport Pedagogy, 22(3), 270-282. doi: 10.1080/17408989.2016.1176133.

Palmer, K., & Brian, A. (2016). Test of Gross Motor Development-2 scores differ between expert and novice coders. Journal of Motor Learning and Development, 4(2), 142-151.

De Meester, A., Stodden, D., Brian, A., True, L., Cardon, G., Tallir, I. & Haerens, L. (2016). Associations among elementary school children’s actual motor competence, perceived motor competence, physical activity and BMI: a cross-sectional study. PlosOne, 1(10), doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0164600

Brian, A., Haegele, J., Lieberman, L., & Bostick, L. (2016). The content and face validity for the Test of Perceived Motor Competence for children with visual impairments: A Delphi investigation. British Journal of Visual Impairments. 34(3), 238-247. doi: 10.1177/0264619616658072

Brian, A., Haegele, J., & Bostick, L. (2016). Perceived motor competence of children with visual impairments: A pilot study. British Journal of Visual Impairment. 34(2), 151-155. doi: 10.1177/0264619616628575

Haegele, J., Brian, A., & Goodway, J. D. (2015). Fundamental motor skills and school-aged individuals with visual impairments: A review and directions for future research. Review Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, doi: 10.1007/s40489-015-0055-8

Barnett, L., Hardy, L., Brian, A., & Robertson, S. (2015). The development and validation of a golf swing and putt skill assessment for children. Journal of Sports Science and Medicine. 14, 147-154. 

Brian, A., & Haegele, J. (2014). Including students with visual impairments: Softball. Journal of Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. 85(3), 39-45.

Brian, A., Ward, P., Goodway, J., & Sutherland, S. (2014). Modifying softball for maximizing learning outcomes in physical education. Journal of Physical Education, Recreation and Dance. 85(2), 32-37.


Editor Reviewed Articles
Haegele, J., Brian, A., Sutherland, S & Hogan, L. (2014). Teaching rounders in physical education and including students with visual impairments. PE Matters, 9(2), 22-24.


Invited Editor Reviewed Articles
Goodway, J., Brian, A., Chang, S. H., Famelia, R., & Tsuda, E. (2013). Promoting physical literacy through the early years. ICSSPE Bulletin - Journal of Sport Science and Physical Education, 65.

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