Toward an Interdisciplinary Understanding of Place: Lessons for Environmental EducationReport as inadecuate

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Canadian Journal of Environmental Education, v11 n1 p112-126 2006

Sense of place is lauded as critical to developing an environmentally conscious and responsive citizenry. Calls for place-based education have often arisen from an emotional plea to reconnect to the land, become rooted, and conserve natural places. However, in reality, sense of place encompasses a multidimensional array that is not only biophysical, but also psychological, sociocultural, political, and economic. This paper reviews the sense-of-place literature and argues for an integrated, holistic view of place, particularly as it applies to environmental education. Recognizing these interconnected dimensions encourages environmental education that more effectively, practically, and honestly integrates sense of place with real-world issues of environmental learning, involvement, action, and community-based conservation. (Contains 1 figure and 4 notes.)

Descriptors: Environmental Education, Holistic Approach, Cultural Influences, Social Influences, Political Issues, Interdisciplinary Approach

Lakehead University and Canadian Network for Environmental Education and Communication. Lakehead University Faculty of Education, 955 Oliver Road, Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5E1, Canada. Fax: 807-346-7771; e-mail: cjee[at]; Web site:

Author: Ardoin, Nicole M.


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