An examination of anti-doping education initiatives from an educational perspective: Insights and recommendations for improved educational design

An examination of anti-doping education initiatives from an educational perspective : Insights and recommendations for improved educational design / Julian R. Woolf. - (Performance Enhancement & Health 8 (2020) 2-3 (August) 100178)

  • DOI: 10.1016/j.peh.2020.100178


The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) has declared that education is a central focus of their anti-doping strategy. This is evident in the expansion of Article 18 of the 2021 World Anti-Doping Code that focuses on education. Furthermore, at the 2019 World Conference on Doping in Sport, they launched the International Standard for Education. International standards are technical documents that further harmonize anti-doping efforts, to which Code signatories are required to follow for Code compliance. Before this, WADA developed an online platform, ADeL, to consolidates all of its e-learning resources and in August 2019, they hired a Director of Education to lead their education strategy. While these developments are likely applauded by anti-doping advocates, historically the efficacy of anti-doping educational programs to increase athletes’ knowledge of doping has been very poor. The design of education programs has been criticized and even when they meet many of the current recommendations for program design, the results are not favorable. A partial explanation for this is that the design of past education programs has not been informed by principles from education and other related disciplines. This includes a lack of alignment between learning outcomes desired, the education activities performed, and the assessment of learning outcomes. In this monograph, previous educational initiatives are reviewed, and program design critiqued. WADA’s education strategy is examined before recommendations for improved education design are made. This includes greater reliance on education programs that are constructively aligned and provide opportunities for athletes to develop knowledge via retrieval tasks.

Original document


15 September 2020
Woolf, Julian Robert
United States of America
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Anti-Doping policy
International Standard for Education (ISE)
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University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC)
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Scientific article
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3 November 2021
Date of last modification
11 November 2021
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