, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp 59-71

Environmental attitudes of pre-service teachers: A conceptual and methodological dilemma in cross-cultural data collection

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Abstract

Human generated environmental problems are significant issues of global concern. Despite this, varying attitudes towards environments continue to exist across the globe, impacting on environmental decision-making and action at local, national and international levels. This paper probes some of the similarities and differences in environmental attitudes amongst pre-service teachers in Australia, Republic of Maldives and Indonesia. Data were collected using an established environmental attitude questionnaire and individual interviews. The three communities exhibited a similar range of environmental attitudes using the established questionnaire but significant differences emerged when the interview data were analysed phenomenographically. These differences reflect diversity within and across cultural groups that cannot be satisfactorily explained by the theory underpinning the established questionnaire. Consequently, a revised conceptual framework is proposed.