Research in Outdoor Education


As the number of inclusive programs grows, an important question arises: What are the out­comes of participation in an inclusive camp or outdoor school where children live, learn, and play with peers of varying abilities. Residential camps and outdoor schools and their research partners are striving to develop effective meth­ods to examine the outcomes for program par­ticipants (Dworken. 2001). Both quantitative and qualitative methods have been used to examine outcomes such as changes in skill levels, self-perceptions, attitudes, social interaction, and infonnant or self-reported growth in various ar­eas of development. Qualitative research may help us describe the scope, depth, and context surrounding those outcomes as well as how par­ticipants' experiences during a program carry over into their functioning in other environments or situations. In the present study, qualitative outcomes of inclusive residential camps and outdoor schools for children with and without disabilities are described.