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ERIC Number: EJ1017863
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2013
Pages: 15
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-1324-1486
Understanding Groups in Outdoor Adventure Education through Social Network Analysis
Jostad, Jeremy; Sibthorp, Jim; Paisley, Karen
Australian Journal of Outdoor Education, v17 n1 p17-31 2013
Relationships are a critical component to the experience of an outdoor adventure education (OAE) program, therefore, more fruitful ways of investigating groups is needed. Social network analysis (SNA) is an effective tool to study the relationship structure of small groups. This paper provides an explanation of SNA and shows how it was used by the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) to understand the relationship patterns among different course compositions with students receiving and not receiving scholarships (course compositions included two students, 50% of students, and all students receiving scholarship). Data were collected from three 30-day courses at three different time points throughout the course and were based on two dimensions of cohesion (social and task). The findings suggest that the most homogeneous group (in regard to scholarship recipients) possessed greater social cohesion and the least homogenous group possessed greater task cohesion. Social network analysis should be used more frequently in OAE because it offers a flexible approach to understand groups and group processes.
Outdoor Council of Australia. 150 Caxton Street, Milton, Queensland 4064, Australia. Tel: +61-7-3369-9455; Fax: +61-7-3369-9355; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A