Measuring Emotional Connection to Nature and Connection to Place/Community | eePRO @ NAAEE

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Measuring Emotional Connection to Nature and Connection to Place/Community

I’m a member of a team of researchers and practitioners designing a quick, easy to use manual focused on assessing program outcomes for small non-profits delivering programs aimed at connecting children to the natural world. Often times small organizations do not have the staff, money, or resources to manage this process. Although there are ample resources focusing on outcome assessment, we are focusing on emotional and connection to place/community-oriented outcomes. As part of this process, we are gathering any current tools that organizations may be using to measure participants’ emotional connection to nature following an environmental program at a camp, after school program, overnight program, or day program. In particular we are focused on the following outcomes:

Fascination with natural world
Curiosity about natural world
Joy in natural world
Comfort in natural world
Love of natural world
Connection to Place
Connection to Community

If anyone is part of an environmental education organization that is measuring these outcomes, would you be willing to share your measurement tools? We think this will be beneficial to others assessing these important outcomes. We look forward to sharing the manual with you all very shortly. Thank you!


Thank you for working to make this important information available and open access.

Riveredge Nature Center received a grant from the Wisconsin Environmental Education Board (WEEB) in 2015 and 2016 to contract an external evaluator to work with us to create a plan to evaluate several outcomes related to nature connection, confidence learning/teaching outdoors, and both curiosity and enthusiasm for learning in nature. These outcomes, among others, align with a variety of several family/community, adventure, and onsite school programs that the organization provides. I am attaching an evaluation implementation plan that we used to capture our onsite programs (which includes school, homeschool, and nature-based 4K) programs. The document has links to the actual survey instruments. If you have any questions I am happy to talk more!