Term of Award

Spring 1998

Degree Name

Master of Recreation Administration

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (restricted to Georgia Southern)

Committee Chair

Pamela Thomason

Committee Member 1

Mark Morgan

Committee Member 2

Henry Eisenhart

Committee Member 3

Larry Mutter

Abstract

An experimental design was employed to determine the effect of a direct contact snake education program, and the gender of the interpreter, on the attitudes of children toward snakes. Subjects for this study were selected at random from the sample population of children, grades four through six, who took part in a snake education program at the Georgia Southern University museum in May and June of 1993. The study consisted of a control group posttest only design. Each subject filled out a five question, nine point Likert Scale questionnaire regarding attitudes toward snakes. The control group was given the questionnaire prior to the program. The treatment group was administered the questionnaire after the program. The program consisted of a slide show on snakes followed by exposure to a live snake with the opportunity to touch the snake. The data was analyzed using two ways Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) and T-test for independent samples. Research was based primarily on four hypotheses: 1) Children exposed to the program experience no significant change in their attitudes towards snakes; and 2) Interpreter gender will not significantly effect the difference in attitude change between same gender subjects. Results found that the educational program did improve attitudes of the children toward snakes. Furthermore, results found that there was no relationship between interpreter gender and attitudinal change in same gender subjects.

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