Undergraduate students' ideas about nature and human-nature relationships: An empirical analysis of environmental worldviews

Journal article


Liu, Shu-Chiu and Lin, Huann-shyang. (2014). Undergraduate students' ideas about nature and human-nature relationships: An empirical analysis of environmental worldviews. Environmental Education Research. 20(3), pp. 412 - 429. https://doi.org/10.1080/13504622.2013.816266
AuthorsLiu, Shu-Chiu and Lin, Huann-shyang
Abstract

The aim of the study was to gain insight into undergraduate students’ environmental worldviews by exploring their ideas about nature and human–nature relationships. Participants were 29 students from a university in Taiwan. Interviews were employed as the dominant method, while a questionnaire survey was also used to support the sample selection and enhance the understanding of the interview data. Interview responses were analyzed using a phenomenographic approach and revealed a variation of students’ ideas. One key finding was that although the students were generally pro-ecological, their ideas about nature and human–nature relationships seemed to be often a mixture of worldview tendencies typically as follows: (1) humankind is part of nature and subject to natural laws, and thus cannot possibly destroy nature; (2) humankind plays a dominator role in nature, but can be ‘replaced’ by other species; and (3) humankind should take responsibility for nature in order to secure sufficient natural resources and a livable environment for all species, especially humans. Moreover, the students described and explained nature predominantly from a scientific perspective. The educational implications of the findings and limitations of the study are also discussed.

Keywordsenvironmental worldviews; undergraduate students; ideas about nature; ideas about human–nature relationships
Year2014
JournalEnvironmental Education Research
Journal citation20 (3), pp. 412 - 429
PublisherRoutledge
ISSN1350-4622
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.1080/13504622.2013.816266
Scopus EID2-s2.0-84898424654
Page range412 - 429
Research GroupSchool of Education
Publisher's version
File Access Level
Controlled
Place of publicationUnited Kingdom
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