Undergraduate University Students’ Knowledge, Attitude and Behavior towards Biodiversity
The purpose of this study was to assess biodiversity literacy, which includes the dimensions of biodiversity knowledge, attitudes, and behavior among Hawassa University undergraduate university students. The descriptive research method was used for the study. Results show that a majority of the students were unable to recognize fundamental concepts of biodiversity, which in turn may challenge sustainable biodiversity conservation in Ethiopia. In basic biodiversity tests, biology majors scored slightly higher than geography (mean score of 61 to 53 and standard deviation 10.7 to 9.01 respectively). In addition, the findings of the study indicate that there was a weak relationship between students’ level of knowledge and attitudes (r=40) and knowledge and environmental practices (r=24). Similarly, a study between attitudes and behaviors at p<0.05, indicated a moderate correlation of r=49. Analyses of gender effect reveal that female students’ environmental participatory behavior was higher than their male counterparts were. Results further pointed out that students living in the rural area scored significantly higher than the urban counterparts on environmentally responsible action. The mismatch between environmental attitudes and environmentally responsible behaviors suggests, among others, a call for redressing of teaching methodologies that would help students to see their behavior more critically.
Keywords: biodiversity, biodiversity knowledge, biodiversity attitude, biodiversity behavior, environmental education
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