Centre‐based and expedition‐based (wilderness) adventure experiential learning regarding personal effectiveness: an explorative enquiry
Ellis, Susanna Maria
Meyer, Charle du Plessis
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The purpose of this study is to compare a centre‐based adventure programme (CBAP) with an expedition‐based wilderness programme (EBWP) with regard to personal effectiveness. In comparing these two programmes, this study made use of a crossover research design with data collection according to DE Vos. Participants were 28 third‐year students (14 men and 14 women), aged 20 to 23 ( x = 21.6 ± 0.7) from the Northwest University (Potchefstroom Campus) in South Africa. Both interviews and questionnaires (n = 28) were used to gather comprehensive data. Results indicated medium‐(d = 0.5) to‐practically significant (d ≥ 0.8) changes in most of the ROPELOC (Review of Personal Effectiveness and Locus of Control) variables. Each programme offered unique benefits. The EBWP resulted mainly in improvements in terms of the personal aspects of the ROPELOC, whereas the CBAP mainly delivered in terms of its social aspects. Even though both programmes seem to be beneficial for the facilitation of personal effectiveness, each programme should be selected according to the envisaged outcomes and intervention criteria. For the improvement of personal effectiveness, the EBWP seems to be of relatively more value – mainly on account of the impact of the wilderness environment. This translates into unique experiences of solitude, privacy and freedom of choice, spiritual upliftment, and restoration.