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Female and male teachers’ pro-environmental behaviour, conceptions and attitudes towards nature and the environment do not differ: Ecofeminism put to the test

Journal article
Authors Birgitta Mc Ewen
Pierre Clément
Niklas M Gericke
Eva Nyberg
Mats Hagman
Jan Landström
Published in Asia-Pacific Forum on Science Learning and Teaching
Volume 16
Issue 1
ISSN 1609-4913
Publication year 2015
Published at Department of Pedagogical, Curricular and Professional Studies
Language en
Keywords Attitudes; Ecofeminism; Education; Pro-environmental behaviour; Sustainable development; Teachers
Subject categories Educational Sciences

Abstract

Teachers’ pro-environmental behaviour, conceptions and attitudes towards nature and the environment were investigated using 47 questions from the BIOHEAD-Citizen questionnaire. The sample included 1,109 pre- and in-service teachers from Sweden and France. Analyses showed only few significant differences between female and male teachers. Forty-one questions were further analysed in terms of ecofeminism. Ecofeminism claims that women and men’s conceptions and attitudes towards nature and the environment differ, in the sense that women show higher awareness of environmental issues than men. Our study finds quite poor support for this claim and therefore challenges ecofeminism. This may have implications for environmental education and the perspectives of sustainable development at schools, as our results indicate that there is no reason to fear that male teachers are less engaged with environmental education than female teachers.

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