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Environmental learning and higher education: A study of learning environments using place-based and constructive pedagogies

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(Project) M.Ed.
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This project aims to examine environmental learning in higher education through the study of learning environments of three post-secondary environmental education courses that are characterized by place-based and constructive pedagogies. In addition the project attempts to validate a questionnaire to evaluate environmental education programs and their respective learning environments. The PLACES questionnaire has two versions: 1) Actual and 2) Preferred. The Actual-PLACES questionnaire has the students reflect on their experiences in an actual learning environment, while the Preferred-PLACES has the students contemplate what their ideal, or preferred, learning environment would look like. Current trends in learning environment research have noted that preferred and actual learning environments had a much closer fit in interdisciplinary, outdoor-based learning environments than single disciplined, classroom-based learning environments. The results from this project agree with the current trends in learning environment research, and validate the reliability of the PLACES questionnaire in assessing learning environments.
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