Title of Presentation: An Overview of Three Aquatic Education Programs in Missouri.
Authors: Janice Schnake Greene, Associate Professor of Biology, Southwest Missouri State University, 901 S. National Avenue, Springfield, MO 65804 (417) 836-5306, JaniceGreene@mail.smsu.edu;
Gregg Krumme, Department of Biology, Southwest Missouri State University, 901 S. National Avenue, Springfield, MO 65804, (417) 836-5126; Brian Roddiger, Department of Biology, Southwest Missouri State University, 901 S. National Avenue, Springfield, MO 65804, (417) 836-5126
Presenters: Janice Schnake Greene, Associate Professor of Biology, Southwest Missouri State University
A/V Needs: digital projector and laptop or slide projector
Abstract: Missouri has been active in conservation education for many years. It has 56,000 miles of flowing surface water and several large lakes, therefore, aquatic education is an important part of the overall conservation education program. This presentation will look at three studies dealing with aquatic education. The first study examined 6th and 12th graders' knowledge, attitudes and behaviors related to conservation. Overall, students had a good understanding of aquatic concepts including a watershed, groundwater, riparian zones, and aquatic food chains. However, students did not understand how soil erosion affects aquatic systems or the functions of wetlands. The second study evaluated the Missouri Stream Team Program. The Missouri Department of Conservation, Missouri Department of Natural Resources, and the Conservation Federation of Missouri developed the Stream Team Program to foster education, stewardship, and advocacy. An evaluation of students experienced in Stream Teams and non-experienced students' knowledge and attitudes was conducted in 1997/98. Significant differences in knowledge were found between experienced and non-experienced individuals, grade levels, and schools. Analysis of attitude scores revealed significant differences between groups and between gender. In general, individuals with Stream Team experience scored higher than non-experienced individuals in knowledge and attitudes. The third study is an evaluation of education programs at the Roaring River Trout Hatchery in Cassville, Missouri. Four hundred visitors to the hatchery were surveyed to look at knowledge and attitudes of aquatic resources and perceptions of programs. Results will be discussed.