ERIC Number: ED368566
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Mar
Reference Count: 0
The Effects of an Interdisciplinary Curriculum Unit on the Environmental Decision-Making of Secondary School Students.
McConney, Amanda W.; And Others
In the first phase of this study an interdisciplinary curriculum unit was developed centered on the concept of sustainable development in tropical rainforests. The centerpiece of the interdisciplinary unit was the investigation of a simulated environmental problem which required students to develop and then decide on a solution, having weighed a spectrum of possibilities previously explored in class activities and discussions. In the second phase of the study, nine science teachers implemented the curriculum unit in their classrooms after attending a two-day training workshop. Teachers first administered environmental decision-making pretests to their students who had been randomly assigned in intact classes to experimental (interdisciplinary rainforest curriculum unit) and control (conventional curriculum) groups. On completion of the three-week unit, environmental decision-making posttests were completed by both experimental and control students. Inferential results implied that students exposed to the interdisciplinary curriculum unit offered more supporting statements for their environmental decisions as compared to control students. It was evident that females used more alternative reasoning categories than their male counterparts when reaching an environmental decision. These results support the use of interdisciplinary curricula for enriching the environmental decision-making of secondary students. (Author)
Descriptors: Critical Thinking, Curriculum Development, Curriculum Evaluation, Decision Making, Decision Making Skills, Ecology, Environmental Education, High School Students, High Schools, Integrated Curriculum, Interdisciplinary Approach, Problem Solving, Science Education, Sex Differences, Skill Development, Units of Study
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Environmental Education Research; Environmental Problems; Science Education Research; Sustainable Development; Tropical Rain Forests
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Association for Research in Science Teaching (67th, Anaheim, CA, March 26-29, 1994).