University Presentation Showcase: Graduate Poster Gallery



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Recreation and Park Administration-Graduate Studies


Recreation and Park Administration




Michael J. Bradley

Mentor Department

Recreation and Park Administration


In a collaborative effort with Eastern Kentucky University (EKU), many middle schools enjoy full day field trips to the Maywoods Environmental and Educational Laboratory (Maywoods) in Central Kentucky for environmental education programming and other environmental experience. Maywoods is an EKU owned and operated facility, primarily operated by faculty and staff within EKU’s Division of Natural Areas. Researchers in the Department of Recreation and Park Administration, working with the Division of Natural Areas, developed this research study to assess 1any changes in the perception of environmental education by participants, 2general effectiveness of the environmental education programs at Maywoods, and 3data collection mechanisms and methodology used in environmental education research.

The study took place during the Fall 2013 and Spring 2014 semesters, and participants were 7th grade middle schools students from the Garrard and Lincoln County School districts in Central Kentucky. There were 215 participants for the pre-test and 89 participants for the post-test. The researchers administered the pre-test five days before, and the post-test five days after, participation in the environmental educational activities at Maywoods. The surveys were administered in the science classes of each middle school, with most students taking the common paper and pencil survey, with randomly selected students taking the same survey on a tablet computer. The survey used was a slightly altered version of Larson’s (2008) The Environmental Attitude Awareness Survey. The surveys included environmental questions such as interest in nature, importance of nature, endangered ecosystems, and environmental stewardship. The environmental education programming at Maywoods was found to be beneficial.