Year of Award


Document Type


Degree Type

Master of Science (MS)

Degree Name

Environmental Studies

Department or School/College

Environmental Studies Program

Committee Chair

Daniel Spencer

Commitee Members

Fletcher Brown, Laurie Yung


Environmental Behavior, Environmental Education, Environmental Ethics, Outdoor Education, Qualitative


University of Montana


In light of the environmental crisis facing the world, the need for citizens to behave in an environmentally responsible manner is critical to finding lasting solutions. After conducting and analyzing 20 in-depth interviews with alumni of the Wild Rockies Field Institute (WRFI), this study found that despite elevated pre-course levels of environmentally responsible behavior most participants reported an increased level of post course environmental behavior change. Post-course impacts ranged from a change of, or further investment in academic and career goals, lifestyle choices, empowerment, ethical development and political activity. Participants reported these outcomes were influenced by a variety of course factors such as course instructors, student group, guest speakers, and time for reflection in the outdoors. Over all, participants of WRFI reported significant changes in their environmental awareness as well as an increased propensity to act on their intentions. This study helps demonstrate how behavior change theory works on the ground and highlight significant factors that make for successful (or unsuccessful) outcomes.



© Copyright 2010 Theodore Rosenberger Morrison