Adventure education and Outward Bound: Out-of-class experiences that make a lasting difference


John A. Hattie
Herbert W. Marsh
James T. Neill
Garry E. Richards

Review of Educational Research, 67, 43-87, 1997


The purpose of this meta-analysis is to examine the effects of adventure programs on a diverse array of outcomes such as self-concept, locus of control, and leadership. The meta-analysis was based on 1728 effect-sizes, 151 unique samples from 96 studies and the average effect-size at the end of the programs was .34. In a remarkable contrast to most educational research, these short-term or immediate gains were followed by substantial additional gains between the end of the program and follow-up assessments (ES = .17). The effect-sizes varied substantially according the particular program and outcome, and improved as the length of the program and the ages of participants increased. Too little is known, however, about why adventure programs work most effectively.

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