Environmental concern: The influence of an introductory science class on environmental perceptions

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An environmental concern scale (ECS) was administered to a group of college students before and after completion of an introductory environmental science class. A significant increase in the level of concern was seen in questions related to overall environmental awareness and personal responsibility. Specifically, concern was raised on questions related to slowing down pollution, preventing animal extinction, and students’ willingness to accept an increase in family expenses to help protect the environment. After completing the course, students also supported providing ample opportunities in all schools to learn about environmental issues. These data provide evidence that a college level environmental education experience can have an impact on environmental concerns and anticipated future behaviors. These data stress the importance and influence of environmental education at the higher educational (college) levels, and indicate such courses may provide opportunities for students in diverse degree programs to reshape their personal environmental ethic.


College students; Environmental responsibility; Environmental science – Study and teaching


Education | Environmental Health and Protection | Environmental Sciences | Science and Mathematics Education


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