ERIC Number: EJ965050
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 30
Volunteer Guides in Nature Reserves: Exploring Environmental Educators' Perceptions of Teaching, Learning, Place and Self
Evans, Emily; Ching, Cynthia Carter; Ballard, Heidi L.
Environmental Education Research, v18 n3 p391-402 2012
In the following case study, we examine the interplay between self-perception, environmental perception, and the interests and practice of volunteer trail guides who were recruited to provide educational services for visitors to a natural reserve in Northern California. Through semi-structured interviews with 15 guides and observations of training sessions and educational walks, we found that although individual perspectives of volunteers varied regarding the role of an educator for the reserve, guides shared common interests in teaching and learning and in the place itself. Active guides were drawn to the program by an interest in teaching and learning, had a previous relationship to the place, and held an image of themselves that matched their perceived image of a guide. These findings on the relationship of perception and participation support existing research on issues of identity in environmental education, and extend our current understanding of volunteer participation in interpretation and education programs.
Descriptors: Volunteers, Environmental Education, Teacher Attitudes, Teacher Role, Semi Structured Interviews, Observation, Case Studies, Interests, Self Concept, Nonformal Education, Expertise, Ethics, Conservation (Environment)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: California