Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Education (Ph.D)


Administrative and Instructional Leadership

First Advisor

Erin Fahle

Second Advisor

Katherine Aquino

Third Advisor

Anthony Annunziato


Many studies have shown the mental, physical, and academic benefits of environmental education to students. Equally important, environmental education can develop our students into more environmentally minded citizens. However, we are learning that most students are not receiving accurate environmental information while in school, which may impact their attitudes toward the environment and subsequent actions to protect it. Understanding current college-aged students' (Generation Z's) attitudes toward the environment are critical as they are next in line to make political and business decisions that will affect our planet. Using the New Ecological Paradigm Scale (NEP), 1,556 community college students were surveyed to determine their attitudes toward the environment. This dissertation analyzed these secondary data to understand whether NEP scores vary by student age (traditional, non-traditional), gender (male, female), and race (White, Hispanic, Black, Asian American, Native American). Data were also analyzed to determine if differences in attitudes exist among students enrolled in various science and non-science courses. If individual groups of students have lower NEP scores, it will allow the school to adjust their curriculum to increase and improve environmental content delivered either as a standalone or in an interdisciplinary manner with other courses.