Research in Outdoor Education




This article reports results of a study that investigated the relationship between leadership style and group cohesion in outdoor education. Two surveys were used with 359 participants, aged 13-15, who participated in a 4-day canoe trip on the Lower Colorado River. Results showed a statistically significant correlation between leadership and group cohesion, suggesting that (a) an understanding of a variety of leadership styles gives leaders the ability to shift their style according to each situation, (b) it is important for leaders to think about when to use different leadership styles, (c) awareness will make for more effective leaders, (d) leaders should avoid relying on a single style and trying to use it in all situations, and (e) an ability to use multiple leadership styles makes leaders more confident in their ability to facilitate group cohesion.