Interactions & Environmental Attitudes: A Statistical Analysis of How Experiences Determine Outlook Towards Goucher’s Woods
Links to Fileshttps://blogs.goucher.edu/verge/interactions-environmental-attitudes-a-statistical-analysis-of-how-experiences-determine-outlook-towards-gouchers-woods/
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Type of Work24 pages
DepartmentCenter for Natural Sciences - Environmental Studies
RightsCollection may be protected under Title 17 of the U.S. Copyright Law. To obtain information or permission to publish or reproduce, please contact the Goucher Special Collections & Archives at 410-337-6347 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
SubjectsResearch -- Periodicals.
This analytical essay sprung from a classwide project during the Fall of 2017. Along with several other Environmental Studies majors, I conducted an online survey of Goucher College students regarding their attitudes towards the Goucher Woods via the platform Qualtrics. The course itself, ES311: Biosphere & Society, focused on teaching data-driven skills in an environmental context, which led us to our topic of choice; we wanted to better understand how the woods on our campus affect students’ attitudes towards ‘nature’. After spending a few weeks writing and testing the questions, we released the survey for about two weeks, and then dedicated another month of the semester towards analyzing the results with every statistical test we could cover. Very often, environmental attitudes are attributed to gender or race, which while informative, I thought excludes other factors while also forcing binaries and perhaps misguidedly attributing behaviors to certain groups. For this reason, I elected to perform my analysis on the frequency of interaction that students have with the woods, and thus if more frequent interactions influence deeper understanding of regulatory benefits or greater appreciation of aesthetic/cultural benefits of the woods. The final product of this analysis was written as my final experience for the course, and I really enjoyed learning how to use different statistical tests such as Lambda, Cramer’s V, and Chi-Square. From question concepts and programming the instrument to analyzing the results in SPSS and writing this paper, I was an integral component of this project, and I felt that I grew as both a data analyst and writer during the course of this endeavor.