Integrating hypermedia into the environmental education setting: Developing a program and evaluating its effect
Tehri Davenport Parker, University of Minnesota, United States
University of Minnesota . Awarded
This study designed, implemented, and evaluated an environmental education hypermedia program for use in a residential environmental education facility. The purpose of the study was to ascertain whether a hypermedia program could increase student knowledge and positive attitudes toward the environment and environmental education. A student/computer interface, based on the theory of social cognition, was developed to direct student interactions with the computer.
A quasi-experimental research design was used. Students were randomly assigned to either the experimental or control group. The experimental group used the hypermedia program to learn about the topic of energy. The control group received the same conceptual information from a teacher/naturalist.
An Environmental Awareness Quiz was administered to measure differences in the students' cognitive understanding of energy issues. Students participated in one on one interviews to discuss their attitudes toward the lesson and the overall environmental education experience. Additionally, members of the experimental group were tape recorded while they used the hypermedia program. These tapes were analyzed to identify aspects of the hypermedia program that promoted student learning.
The findings of this study suggest that computers, and hypermedia programs, can be integrated into residential environmental education facilities, and can assist environmental educators in meeting their goals for students. The study found that the hypermedia program was as effective as the teacher/naturalist for teaching about environmental education material. Students who used the computer reported more positive attitudes toward the lesson on energy, and thought that they had learned more than the control group. Students in the control group stated that they did not learn as much as the computer group. The majority of students had positive attitudes toward the inclusion of computers in the camp setting, and stated that they were a good way to learn about environmental education material. This study also identified lack of social skills as a barrier to social cognition among mixed gender groups using the computer program.
Parker, T.D. Integrating hypermedia into the environmental education setting: Developing a program and evaluating its effect. Ph.D. thesis, University of Minnesota.
Citation reproduced with permission of ProQuest LLC.
For copies of dissertations and theses: (800) 521-0600/(734) 761-4700 or https://dissexpress.umi.com