Reconnecting youth with community and environment: Keys to civic engagement education program success
Kristin Dominique Wisneski, The University of Arizona, United States
The University of Arizona . Awarded
In an increasingly complex world, there is a need for youth to address scientific issues both locally and globally. While interest and proficiency in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) decline, diverse methods to successfully engage, educate, and empower youth based on informal, learner-centric approaches are being tested. The factors potentially contributing to the success of a technology-supported civic engagement program were documented for 20 after school programs using qualitative methods. Using content analysis, the data was coded and tabulated and key variables were constructed. Univariate regression analysis revealed that four out of seventeen potential predictor variables proved to have a significant relationship with program success. The final multivariate regression model for predicting program success included youth-drivenness and total events (R-squared =0.58, p-value=0.0006), suggesting that encouraging participant ownership of the learning process is important to community and environmental problem awareness and the pursuit of solutions through STEM skills.
Wisneski, K.D. Reconnecting youth with community and environment: Keys to civic engagement education program success. Master's thesis, The University of Arizona.
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