Considering Efficacy of an Outdoor Environmental Education Program: Facilitating Elementary Students’ Environmental Knowledge, Attitudes, and Behaviours

dc.contributor.authorHarding, Brittanyen
dc.contributor.departmentEducationen
dc.contributor.supervisorKlinger, Don A.en
dc.date2016-06-28 22:38:38.38
dc.date.accessioned2016-06-29T17:40:04Z
dc.date.available2016-06-29T17:40:04Z
dc.date.issued2016-06-29
dc.degree.grantorQueen's University at Kingstonen
dc.descriptionThesis (Master, Education) -- Queen's University, 2016-06-28 22:38:38.38en
dc.description.abstractVarious sources have sought to consider the educational interventions that foster changes in perception of and attitudes toward nature, with the ultimate intent of understanding how education can be used to encourage environmentally responsible behaviours. With these in mind, the current study identified an outdoor environmental education program incorporating these empirically supported interventions, and assessed its ability to influence environmental knowledge, attitudes, and behaviours. Specifically, this study considered the following research questions: 1) To what degree can participation in this outdoor education program foster environmental knowledge and encourage pro-environmental attitudes and self-reported pro-environmental behaviours? 2) How is this effect different among students of different genders, and those who have different prior experiences in nature? Two motivational frameworks guided inquiry in the current study: the Value-Belief-Norm Model of Environmentalism (VBN) and the Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB). The study employed a quantitative survey methodology, combining contemporary data measuring knowledge, attitudes, and behaviours with archived data collected by program staff, reflecting frequency of environmentally responsible behaviour. Further, a single qualitative item was included for which students provided “the first three words that [came] to mind when [they] think of the word nature.” Terms provided before and after the program were compared for differences in theme to detect subtle or underlying changes. Quantitative results indicated no significant change in student knowledge or attitudes through the outdoor environmental education program. However, a significant change in self-reported behaviour was identified from both the contemporary and archived data. This agreement in positive findings across the two data sets, collected using different measures and different participants, lends evidence of the program’s ability to encourage self-reported pro-environmental behaviour. Further, qualitative results showed some change in students’ perceptions of nature through the program, providing direction for future research. These findings suggest that this particular outdoor education program was successful in encouraging students’ self-reported environmentally responsible behaviour. This change was achieved without significant change in knowledge or environmental attitudes, suggesting that external factors not measured in this study might have played a role in affecting behaviour.en
dc.description.degreeM.Ed.en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1974/14616
dc.language.isoengen
dc.relation.ispartofseriesCanadian thesesen
dc.rightsQueen's University's Thesis/Dissertation Non-Exclusive License for Deposit to QSpace and Library and Archives Canadaen
dc.rightsProQuest PhD and Master's Theses International Dissemination Agreementen
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dc.rightsCreative Commons - Attribution - CC BYen
dc.rightsThis publication is made available by the authority of the copyright owner solely for the purpose of private study and research and may not be copied or reproduced except as permitted by the copyright laws without written authority from the copyright owner.en
dc.subjectAttitudeen
dc.subjectWorldviewen
dc.subjectBehaviouren
dc.subjectKnowledgeen
dc.subjectOutdoor Educationen
dc.subjectEnvironmental Responsibityen
dc.subjectEnvironmental Educationen
dc.subjectMotivationen
dc.subjectPro-environmentalen
dc.subjectSocial Normsen
dc.subjectNew Ecological Paradigmen
dc.titleConsidering Efficacy of an Outdoor Environmental Education Program: Facilitating Elementary Students’ Environmental Knowledge, Attitudes, and Behavioursen
dc.typethesisen
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