Date of Award

Spring 5-5-2014

Document Type


First Advisor

Caroline Kobek Pezzarossi

Second Advisor

Daniel Koo


There may exist a relationship between the type of environment one is raised in, amount of exposure to the outdoors as a child and later connectedness to nature as an adult. This study attempts to identify childhood experiences, which may have an influence on adult tendency toward specific patterns of attachment, belief, behavior, and emotions in relation to the natural world. Results show no significant relationship between childhood environment and preference of indoor or outdoor activities in this study sample. However, frequency of exposure through field trips has been found to have a significant impact on connectedness to nature. The implication of this research is it can be used in encouraging maximum exposure to the outdoor environment not only when people are children, but in adulthood as well. Limitations of this study include a relatively small sample size as well as a sample of convenience and issues of internal reliability of the measurements. Future research could study the link between a person's feelings of connectedness to nature and their mental or physical health; include more demographic data; expand the sample to include deaf, hard of hearing, and hearing participants; and further divide rural, suburban and urban environments into sub-categories.



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