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ERIC Number: EJ789197
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2008
Pages: 6
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 13
ISSN: ISSN-1053-8259
A Means-End Investigation of Outcomes Associated with Outward Bound and NOLS Programs
Goldenberg, Marni; Pronsolino, Dan
Journal of Experiential Education, v30 n3 p271-276 Spr 2008
This study compares outcomes associated with participation in Outward Bound (OB) and National Outdoor Leadership Schools (NOLS) courses in the United States. OB and NOLS (two of the largest providers of outdoor adventure education [OAE] courses) combined saw more than 30,000 students in 2006 (NOLS, n.d.; Outward Bound, n.d.). Comparing these two respected outdoor adventure education programs may assist programmers and leaders to adapt programming to specific needs and achieve specific outcomes. The study was conducted in the summer of 2006 and used means-end theory to analyze the 510 subjects' responses. Data were collected from 162 OB students and 348 NOLS students. Data from this study suggest that a significant component of both OB and NOLS programs are related to the group experience. Data also suggest that OB and NOLS participants vary slightly in the means-end chains (attributes, consequences, and values) they produce, but the attributes, consequences, and values achieved are nearly identical. The results from this study indicated many similarities in the outcomes between NOLS and OB. Strenuous activities had a strong link to group interactions and bonding through shared challenges faced by the group, leading the researchers to conclude that the most important aspect of programming is fostering the group experience through group challenges.
Association for Experiential Education. 3775 Iris Avenue Suite 4, Boulder, CO 80301. Tel: 866-522-8337; Fax: 303-440-9581; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A