Sandy Brownscombe

Sandy Brownscombe

Office Phone: (540) 432-4368


Main Campus, Harrisonburg

Office Location: UC 136

“As a physical educator I believe in movement education and the Tactical Games Approach. Both approaches have constructivist underpinnings and provide developmentally appropriate learning and assessment opportunities. At EMU tactical games are divided into the following categories: Net games, Territorial games, and Target and Fielding games. Each tactical games lesson includes a tactical problem to be solved, a small-sided game, questions relevant to the first game and the tactical problem, a practice task(s), a second small-sided game and concluding questions. Students learn the concepts and the skills of the sports in an integrated fashion and a tactical games lesson meets the characteristics of a good game identified by Hastie (2010) in Student-designed games: Strategies for promoting creativity, cooperation, and skill development:

  • Contribute to skill development;
  • Be safe;
  • Include, not eliminate, students from participation (elimination makes almost no pedagogical sense when one considers that the most likely students to be eliminated are those who have the least skill and in fact need the most practice);
  • Have high participation rates; and
  • Be structured so that all children are successful and are being challenged. (p. 6)

If you need a reason for having sweet dreams, think of your best student. If you need a reason to get out of bed in the morning, think of your worst one Author Unknown"

Sandy Brownscombe is a professor in the physical education program. Sandy earned her Ed.D. from Argosy University/Sarasota, where her dissertation focused on how second and third-year teachers develop and demonstrate caring in their classrooms. She has been a member of the EMU faculty since 1978 teaching both physical education and education courses and also coached field hockey, women’s basketball, and men’s volleyball and is a member of the EMU Athletics Hall of Honor. From 2000-2015 Sandy served as EMU’s representative on the Mid-Valley Clinical Faculty Consortium for Teacher Education Steering Committee before she returned to chair the physical education and recreation department from August 2015 to June of 2017.


  • Ed. D. in K-12 Curriculum and Instruction, Argosy University/Sarasota, May 2004, Dissertation Title: Infusing An Ethic Of Care In A P-12 Learning Community: A Case Study Of Second And Third-Year Teachers
  • Master of Science in Physical Education, Washington State University, August 1978
  • Bachelor of Arts, University of Northern Colorado, June 1973, Nk-12 Endorsement in Health and Physical Education


Brownscombe, S. L., (1978). The ability to perceive varying line colors and widths on gymnasium floors. Athletic Purchasing and Facilities, 2(6), 48-49.

Scholarly Presentations and Abstracts

  • Brownscombe, S., PETE Network Roundtable, VAHPERD Annual Convention, Richmond, VA, November 13, 2016.

Church, Community and Professional Service

  • Vice Chair of Church Council, Park View Mennonite Church, Harrisonburg, VA.
  • Chair of the College/University Section Virginia Association for Health, Physical Education, Recreation and Dance (VAHPERD)

Honors, Awards and Grants

  • Inductions into the Eastern Mennonite University Athletic Hall of Honor, Harrisonburg, VA, Individual Induction October 9, 2004. 1980 Field Hockey Team Induction October 13, 2012. “EMU Hall of Honor”:
  • 2008 Shenandoah Valley Virginia Chapter Phi Delta Kappa Distinguished Service in Education Award

Professional Memberships

  • Society of Health and Physical Educators (SHAPE America)
  • Virginia Association for Health Physical Education Recreation and Dance (VAHPERD)
  • International Physical Literacy Association
  • Association of Teacher Educators (ATE)

Professional Conferences Attended

  • ATE Summer Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, August 4-8, 2017
  • VAHPERD Annual Convention, Richmond, VA, November 12-13, 2016
  • SHAPE Southern District Convention, Williamsburg, VA, February 11-13, 2016

EMU Service

  • Chair of Physical Education and Recreation Department, 2015-2017
  • Committee on Teacher Education, 1979-2017
  • Undergraduate Council, 2015-2017

Printable Curriculum Vitae