Air-quality: a comparison of conceptions and attitudes across the continents

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Boyes, E, Myers, G, Skamp, KR, Stanisstreet, M & Yeung, S 2007, 'Air-quality: a comparison of conceptions and attitudes across the continents', Compare, vol. 37, no. 4, pp. 425-445.

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A closed-form questionnaire was used to explore the ideas of school students about the composition of air, the causes and consequences of air pollution and the extent to which the students would accept various courses of action to reduce air pollution. Items for the questionnaire were derived from the results of interviews and an earlier open-form questionnaire. More than 3000 students aged 11 to 17 years and from Australia, Hong Kong and the UK were surveyed. There was a degree of similarity between students from the different countries in their knowledge about air composition and air pollution. In terms of attitudes, however, there were differences in students' opinions about the acceptability of actions to improve air quality. Path analysis of the data appeared to show that Hong Kong students are more amenable to education as an instrument to influence their attitudes. For the other countries, the acceptability of actions for environmental protection was related to the degree of concern about air quality.