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Abstract

I was interested in whether the inclusion of a service-learning experience would affect students’ attitudes and values about the environment. To investigate this question, I incorporated a service-learning project into the laboratory portion of one of the two sections of my non-majors biology course, and kept the lecture portions of the course identical. Several methods were used to assess the impact of the service-learning experience: the New Ecological Paradigm survey was used to measure changes in students’ attitudes and values about the environment at the beginning and end of the semester, and reflective writing assignments were used throughout the semester qualitatively assess changes. Students’ evaluations of the course and the instructor were also compared. As predicted, participation in a service-learning project was associated with changes in students’ attitudes and values about the environment. Students in the service-learning lab were also more likely to positively rate the course and the instructor.

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