William G Anderson “Bill” (October 19, 1934-December 31, 2019)

It is with great sadness that we share the passing of William “Bill” G. Anderson, truly a giant in our field. Dr. Anderson taught in Physical Education Curriculum and Instruction at Teachers College at Columbia University in New York City for 40 years, and served as chair of the department for most of those years. He created a work/study program enabling Masters students to teach part time under master teachers during the day at local schools and study at night at Teachers College to refine their craft and/or obtain their teaching certification. This real life experience coupled with concurrently studying pedagogy and curriculum was deeply valued by his students. In the 1970s he established one of the premier PETE doctoral programs of the era. Bill supervised many doctoral students who became leaders in the field. With his doctoral students in 1973 he changed the study of teaching by developing the Teachers College Physical Education Video Data Base Project which was a collection of 30+ videotapes of real live physical education lessons which were used by a number of researchers to conduct in-depth studies of what actually happens in physical education classes. His text Analysis of Teaching and Learning in Physical Education was an elegant compilation of the systematic tools developed to study different aspects of teaching by his doctoral students. A second edition (2011) co-authored with Mary Lou Veal focused on resulting tools for teachers and pre-service teachers to use in studying and reflecting on their own teaching.

An emphasis on establishing school/university partnerships for the purpose of improving educational practice led Bill to establish The Physical Education Program Development Center in 1980 (Anderson, 1988). This collaborative venture involving Teachers College and six affiliated school districts in Westchester County, NY demonstrated Bill’s commitment to teacher ownership of program development efforts and the involvement of University personnel as facilitators of those efforts. The work of the ‘Center’ continued for more than ten years.

But, most of all, Bill Anderson was loved by his students and colleagues. He was a quiet, gentle man who modeled kindness and thoughtfulness and helped us to be the very best versions of ourselves.

In lieu of flowers the family has asked for comments and stories from students and faculty who knew Bill Anderson, the professor, that can be shared with his grandchildren so they know of the impact he had on the field of physical education and on his many students.

Stories or thoughts can be emailed to raylabill@gmail.com
or sent to Rayla Anderson 4 Arcadia Drive New City, NY 10956-5913
(Please also copy Lambdin@utexas.edu so we can create an archive memory book for Teachers College and the profession.