The authors evaluated the long term effects of Parks as Classrooms, an environmental education program by the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP). This external evaluation was conducted using 20 to 40 minute interviews with fourth grade students who lived near GSMNP, and who one year previously had visited the park for a one day field trip. During the interviews, the students were asked to talk about what they remembered from their GSMNP field trip. The evaluators used phenomenological analysis methods to examine the effects of the field trip as expressed by the participants a year later. Interviews were transcribed and analyzed to identify emergent themes identified by the students. Action, knowledge and attitude themes emerged from the analysis. The results of the evaluation were used by GSMNP to modify their curriculum to better meet their program goals.
An Elementary School Environmental Education Field Trip: Long-Term Effects on Ecological and Environmental Knowledge and Attitude Development
Program Search Terms
Evaluation Search Terms
Field Trip/Guided Tour
Analysis - Qualitative Data:
Content Analysis w/ Categorization of Responses
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Journal of Environmental Education, 38(3), 33-42.
A partial set of evaluation instruments is available in the report