Using Nature as a Hands-On Method for Teaching Psychological Research Methods
Jaclynn V. Sullivan, Allie M. Dunkel

Making research tangible is highly impactful in the teaching and learning of research methods in psychology. Using nature as the context and content for learning may be a novel, accessible, andeffectiveway ofteaching the research process.We explored the viability and impact of applied nature-focused coursework on students’ understanding of research curriculum. During the term, twenty-nine students in two capstone coursesmet weekly and discussed relevant sustainability research and the outdoor course collected environmental data while walking outside.Students were given a research methods pretest/ posttest as well as article reviews to assess mastery of research throughout the term. We found significant improvement in students’ research mastery in bothcourses from the beginning to the end of the term, suggesting nature-related research as an effective avenue for teaching these concepts. Additionally, the outdoor course significantly outperformed the indoor course. We discussusing hands-on activitiesgrounded in nature exploration as innovative and effective teaching methods for research methods.

Full Text: PDF     DOI: 10.15640/jpbs.v10n1a1