Geography fieldwork, fieldwork value and learning styles

A. Dunphy, G. Spellman

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticlepeer-review


Fieldwork is considered central to an education as a physical geographer. However, there are doubts whether all students benefit from it equally. A preferred way of learning may have an influence upon its perceived value. Attitude surveys were administered to 1191 2nd- and 3rd-year physical geography undergraduates across 16 British universities. The survey assessed individuals' perception of the “value” of fieldwork and also their preferred learning style (using Kolb's LSI). A total of 421 returns (35%) were analysed using multivariate analysis. Seven groups of students emerge with respect to the value they place on fieldwork. There was an overall positive view, especially with respect to the social aspects. However the hypothesis that learning style affects the value of fieldwork appears unfounded in this instance.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)19-28
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Research in Geographical and Environmental Education
Issue number1
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 Mar 2009


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